Blake Snow

content advisor, recognized journalist, bodacious writer-for-hire

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Tagged meetings

Want to make better decisions? Do these 10 things

Courtesy Miramax

Courtesy Miramax

Smart people don’t make better decisions because they’re smart. They make better decisions, research shows, because they habitually do the following:

1. Remove unimportant decisions. If a decision doesn’t have an impact on your work, relationships, or spirit, then remove it from consideration. For example, many CEOs, heads of states, or creative people wear the same thing every day. Steve Jobs wore blue jeans and a black turtleneck everyday. Mark Zuckerberg only wears blue jeans and a gray t-shirt. Similarly, the leader of the free world only wears blue or gray suits, “Because I have too many other decisions to make,” the president recently told Vanity Fair. “I’m trying to pare down decisions,” he added. “I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing.”

For those of us without a personal chef, deciding what kinds of food to eat is a very important decision. But removing or outsourcing unimportant decisions to other people helps us make more meaningful decisions. One of the ways I achieve this is by removing TV from my life, limiting the number of sportsball games I watch, and restricting the number of news sources I read to only three per day. Doing so introduces more social encounters, analog experiences, and thought-provoking literature into my life, which make me a better writer (instead of regurgitator).  Continue reading…

Routine meetings DON’T bring routine results [update]

Fact: I believe 75% of all in-person meetings are unnecessary. That said, an anonymous individual published a comment yesterday on an older post of mine in which I criticized unnecessary meetings. This is what s/he said:

“Routine meetings bring routine results.”

I respectfully disagree, though I appreciate the commenter for challenging my stated beliefs. So in his/her same spirit (or assuming I misunderstood their definition of “meetings”), I give to you Smooth Harold’s oversimplified expressions on what brings routine results. And I quote (myself)…

Routine productivity brings routine results.
Routine accountability brings routine results.
Routine management brings routine results.
Routine practice brings routine results.
Routine humility brings routine results.
Routine planning brings routine results.
Routine work (that meets your goals, not busy work) brings routine results.

Don’t confuse a majority of your meeting time with getting work done (GTD). Skip or rethink most of your meetings in favor of weekly email updates that ask, “What’s been done?” “What will be done?” and “Is there anything stopping you from getting your work done?” Even ask yourself that. Then once a month have a phone call or in-person meeting to follow up with the weekly ones. This concept alone has gotten me “results” over the last four years when dealing with others, meeting deadlines, and increasing productivity so I can focus on relevant tasks that meet my financial objectives.

At the same time, I’m a big believer in the human element. That is meeting often as friends, co-workers, clients, associates, and colleagues. Earmark copious amounts of your time to enjoy one another’s company without exception. Just don’t call it work.

UPDATE: As Jordan so kindly pointed out in the comments, I may have misinterpreted my anonymous commenters quote, that is routine in a negative light. After consulting a dictionary, I’m not sure if I exposed my lack of diction prowess or if routine can be used in a positive way as I did above. Whatever the case, hopefully something can be derived out of what was said above…