Meeting Etiquette (Rules of Engagement)


I’ve found that managing your time is the most important and most effective thing you can do in your day to maintain productivity. If you’re like me having endless unnecessary interruptions means you can’t get into “the zone” and have periods of deep concentration required to actually do useful work. Endless flipping from task to task and meeting to meeting, then ending up with nothing done.

Defining “rules of engagement” or “meeting etiquette” can help with this to minimise the amount of time that is wasted in (unnecessary) meetings, but also ensure large useful blocks of time that can be dedicated to “deep work” which is where progress can be made.

Main Points

  • No more than 1 Hour of routine IMT Meetings per day and only within the window: 09:00-10:00.
  • No meetings in the afternoon (i.e. from 12:30onwards) unless specifically part of an in-flight Epic or activity we are working on (i.e. exploratory or supplier meetings will need to fall in the mornings.)
  • From 12:30 onwards everyday is reserved for “deep work” activities.

External or Supplier Meetings

  • Exploratory, external (i.e. other teams) or Supplier Meetings availability slot 10:00-12:30 each week day only.

Meeting Quality

  • Any meeting requests that do not have an Agenda and/or Chair defined will be rejected.
  • A meeting needs to have a Agenda, and defined the Outcome of the meeting, e.g. “by the end of the meeting we will have a decision on X”, or “by the end of the meeting we’ll discussed and have an agreed next step on Y”, or perhaps “we’ll have worked together to do this particular task”.
  • The Chair of any meeting will need to ensure that the agenda is being kept to and the outcome (of the meeting) is delivered.
  • Any meetings I feel are too long for the specified will be rejected with more suitable time proposed.
  • When the agenda and outcome have been achieved or I feel there is no further need for me to be in the meeting, I will leave the meeting.
  • My and my team’s calendar are shared, when booking a meeting you are expected to review people’s availability before inviting them, if a person is already booked into a meeting or activity, then your meeting invite will be rejected, although the individual may suggest a different time or provide some windows of availability they have. – i.e. you will not expect that your clashing invite “trumps” what they have already booked or planned.
  • Work activities will always take priority over a meeting, if an individual cannot attend a meeting due to a pressing (operational) issue you may find they are unable to attend at short notice, as the meeting requester it would be up you to seek a replacement person if applicable i.e. it is not up to the invited individual to do this for you.

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