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Get Productive: Agendas Always

Boy Scouts are always preparedBe prepared for every conversation and every situation.

Have you ever tried to listen to the radio station and it wasn’t quite tuned in correctly – the static noise is so distracting! Communicating without clear agendas are like badly tuned radio stations.

I was reading about Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell who established the Boy Scouts Association in Britain in 1908. When it was set up in USA it became Boy Scouts America one of the largest youth organizations in the country, the motto was ‘always be prepared’.

Agendas are a vital component of a meeting. We all know an agenda in a meeting helps create a more productive meeting however have you considered having agendas in other areas of your life?

When you answer the phone you could say ‘G’Day, what’s on your agenda for our phone call today?” – this allows your caller to quickly get to the point and no time is wasted in small talk. We find this technique has helped hundreds of clients increase the effectiveness of their phone time.

Next time you meet with your mentor ensure you have an agenda prepared to maximize your time with them. When I was being mentored early in my speaking career I always had an agenda so if fortunate to have even five minutes of my mentors time I had a question for him. It made all those small amounts of time very valuable.

Understand other people’s agendas – sometimes communications fails because we are focused only on our agenda and oblivious to the other agendas in the conversation.  A simple question to ask people when you meet is ‘are there any other agendas I need to be aware of?’ – this helps raise any hidden or undisclosed agendas to accelerate the conversation.

We’d love to hear your ideas on how you use agendas productively, share your ideas with us here on our blog.

P.S. If you want to increase the team’s meeting effectiveness or phone time consider this great eBook on managing Your Work as a resource for your team.

About Neen James

Neen James, MBA CSP, is the President/CEO of Neen James Communications, LLC. An international productivity expert and native born Aussie, Neen delivers engaging keynotes that have educated, and entertained audiences with real-world strategies that apply in all roles, whether at work or in life. Neen also provides one-on-one consulting and mentoring to women on a variety of business issues and topics. To find out more about Neen, visit her at http://www.neenjames.com/.

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