How the word “role” might save you five hours every week!

7th May 2024

We get lots of meetings invites.

And, often, we just rock-up – even if we know they’ll be rubbish.

But it’s a meeting invitation. Not a court summons. We don’t have to go!

So, how do we decide which ones to accept?

The easiest way to do this is to use the word “role”…

Simply contact the Owner, and ask what role they want you to play in their meeting:

  • If they aren’t clear what your role is, say that – since you don’t have a role – you don’t want to dilute their meeting, so ‘it’s best that I don’t attend’
  • If they say your only role is to help with agenda item #4, (1) ask to put this item at the start, and (2) say that – since you aren’t relevant to the rest of the agenda – you’ll then leave the meeting
  • If they say you do have a role throughout the meeting… well, you now know what your role is! So, you can prepare better, and will be more valuable in the meeting

I explained this technique to one of my clients recently. And it helped him save five hours per week!

He declined four one-hour meetings where he had no role; and changed the agenda of three other meetings, so he could attend for his bit, then disappear early.

Five hours saved! Just for using the word “role”!

Who is the first Meeting Owner you’ll speak with today, to see how much time the word “role” might save you?

Action Point

  • Review your diary
  • For every meeting, contact the Owner and ask them what’s your role
  • If you don’t have a role in some/all of the meeting, decline some/all of it!

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