5 Rules for Leading Excellent Meetings with Your Team Every Day

Jan 25, 2021 by Elise Keith in leadership & facilitation, meeting design (7 minute read)

Successful businesses do the things that others know they should do …. but generally don’t.

~ Ari Weinzwig's 7th Natural Law of Business

So let's talk about those things you need to do to run great everyday business meetings with your teams. And yes, I'm going to share some guidelines you may already know.

Hopefully, you'll be inspired to follow them.

It's worth the effort. The leaders we've met who follow these "rules" enjoy more productivity, more loyalty, more engagement, better decision making, and less BS drama between team members than everyone else. And frankly, none of this is actually that hard to do.

Here are five rules for team meetings that I share with my business clients, and that I wish someone had taught me when I started my business.

Read More...

Topics: leadership & facilitation, meeting design

Hindsight is 2020: How to Run a Year-in-Review Team Retrospective

Dec 30, 2020 by Enrico Teotti in meeting design (12 minute read)

What happened? So what does that mean? Now what should we do going forward? 

In a retrospective meeting, you and your team work to answer these three questions together. When you’re reviewing a short event that just happened, your retrospective meeting might be very short as you all simply work to answer these questions directly. 

When you’re looking at something as long as a year or something involving lots of complex interrelated parts, it doesn’t work to just ask “So, what happened in 2020?” That’s more likely to encourage day drinking than useful insights. 

For something as 2020 as 2020, you’ll need to put a bit more structure in place if you want a useful result.

Introducing Enrico Teotti

That’s why we're thrilled to introduce you all to Enrico Teotti. Enrico hosts the This is Retrospective Facilitation podcast and is an active leader in the agile facilitation and coaching community.

As his holiday gift to us all, Enrico put together a meeting template we can use to try and make some useful sense out of 2020 with our teams. Check it out!

~ Team Lucid

Running an End-of-Year Retrospective

How was your year?

In this short post I'll describe one way to run an annual retrospective so you and your group can reflect on what happened this past year, discuss what you make of it, and begin to decide what the next wise actions to take next year might be.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

How to Find the Most Productive Meeting Schedule for a Team Like Yours

Aug 4, 2020 by Elise Keith in leadership & facilitation, meeting design (11 minute read)

Too much time wasted in unproductive meetings. This remains a top contender on the list of workplace complaints, as it has been for at least 700 years.


Some folks wrestling with this complaint assume that the solution is to simply reduce the amount of time spent in meetings, ideally through the elimination of as many meetings as possible. This is a tidy, easily measured approach, which can yield a quick claim to victory.

Read More...

Topics: leadership & facilitation, meeting design

How to Run a Strategic Pivot Meeting with Your Team

May 6, 2020 by Elise Keith in meeting design (7 minute read)

How is your organization going to survive and thrive in the emerging economy?


That's the question on everyone's mind right now.

Later when we look back, it will seem so clear. Our grandchildren will shake their heads and say:

"If I was alive back then, I totally would have...."

And then the smug little darlings will fill in the blank with whatever proves to be so very obvious in hindsight. Whatever that is, it's not so obvious now.

All we have are clues. Historic events that share some of the same patterns. Bits and pieces of evidence that, if we could just summon enough inner Sherlock, we could see a perfectly correct, elementary solution.

We have a fogged-over, dirty window of opportunity. We can't see what's on the other side of this window, and we're racing towards the future at full speed.

We have no choice but to move forward into this uncertainty. We can't wait for the answers, because if we do, we'll miss the opportunity to be a part of creating those answers.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

Tips for Taking In-Person Training and Workshops Online

Apr 7, 2020 by Elise Keith in meeting technology, leadership & facilitation, remote work, meeting design (10 minute read)

If you're a trainer, workshop facilitator, faith-community leader, event planner, or consultant, you convene groups for a living.


You've probably designed your work assuming you'll be in the same room with the group you're serving.

Now, like everyone else, you need to figure out how to deliver your services online.

You're working fast and feeling a lot of pressure to have an answer for your clients now. You also want to keep your existing contracts intact as much as possible. It was hard enough to get these sessions scheduled in the first place, so you really don't want to have that discussion again.

Unfortunately, this desire to keep the transition from in-person to virtual as simple and direct as possible is driving many experts to make some poor choices. They're also missing some big opportunities.

Here are three of the most important mistakes we see experts make when they first redesign in-person events for online delivery, and some tips about what to do instead.

Read More...

Topics: meeting technology, leadership & facilitation, remote work, meeting design

Survey Results: How often do teams meet during a crisis? (Updated July 2020)

Apr 6, 2020 by Elise Keith in meeting design (4 minute read)

How often should your team meet, and how has that changed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic/economic upheaval? We collected data from teams around the globe to find out! 

Research Background

This isn't a question researchers can easily answer, because the answer depends on so many factors.

When we've looked at this question in the past, we had to rely on the published advice of business consultants and process experts, most of which was designed for teams meeting as part of their business-as-usual operations.  

In our own research, we've talked with groups that meet just once per year because they must; it's mandated by law. Otherwise they wouldn't bother. We also spoke with one retired general who once had his teams run After Action Review meetings every 30 minutes during an especially intense training drill.

Finally, we know that in times of emergency, the group in charge of a coordinated emergency response will keep their communication channels open all day. Think of the war rooms you see in movies, or mission command, and you'll know what we're talking about.

These observations suggest that when you need to get people working together in a complex, rapidly evolving situation, you should meet a lot. We've recommended daily meetings at a minimum under these circumstances.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

Meeting in Times of Rapid Change and Crisis

Apr 3, 2020 by Elise Keith in meeting design (21 minute read)

On April 1, 2020, we hosted a webinar with principals at the Mission Critical Teams Institute. We explored the communication practices business teams can learn from mission critical teams (firefighters, military, medical, and others who handle emergencies for a living) as we all work to adapt in times of rapid change.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

5 Important Meetings For Distributed Customer Support Teams

Feb 3, 2020 by Mercer Smith-Looper in meeting design (7 minute read)

Introducing Mercer Smith-Looper
Mercer is the Head of Support at Appcues, where she manages an all-remote team of customer support representatives. In this article, Mercer describes the meetings she's found to be most helpful for keeping her team aligned, happy, and productive.
— Team Lucid

Running a remote team can be challenging. It’s easy for remote teammates to lose focus, or to feel ignored and unappreciated. Wouldn’t you if you rarely saw or spoke with the people on your team? 

That's why remote work experts like Lisette Sutherland from Collaboration Superpowers advocate for more intentional communication with remote team members. Remote teams often meet more, not less, than their co-located counterparts.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

How Coda's Meeting Operating System Ensures Every Conversation Has a Home

Dec 16, 2019 by Elise Keith in meeting design (9 minute read)

This blog is full of advice for running a great meeting. Of course, teams don't run just one meeting. Teams run lots and lots of meetings.

Now, if you have oodles of spare time, you can design each and every one of your team's meetings from scratch using the advice you'll find here. No one has those oodles, however, which is why—despite the ready availability of all this super practical how-to goodness–lots of folks just make stuff up.

Other teams find a better way. They design their meetings up front, then codify these designs into a Meeting Operating System that makes it easy for them to run those meetings over and over again.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design

The Story Behind Our Meeting Flow Model for Pilot Programs

Dec 9, 2019 by Elise Keith in meeting design, case studies, strategy (12 minute read)

It doesn't matter what kind of team you work on or what you're trying to do - if you can't get that team to all agree and do their part, you fail.

Teamwork is the practice of agreeing on a shared goal and then dividing the work required to achieve that goal amongst the team members. To get that agreement and coordinate all that doing, you've got to communicate.

We're coming up on our 10th anniversary here at Lucid, and over all those years, we've done our fair share of failing. One of our more painful failures came about through a failure to effectively communicate.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design, case studies, strategy