A summer when the Olympic Games take place always has a bit of extra atmosphere. Who in Holland can forget the 2000 summer Olympics in Sydney when the Netherlands won no less than 12 gold medals, thanks largely to the feats of Pieter van den Hoogenband, Inge de Bruijn and Leontien Van Moorsel? It takes quite a lot to win such a medal. A top athlete’s entire life focuses on training programs and optimum fitness. But good focus is also important in meetings. Did you know that a person’s maximum attention span is only 45 minutes? So for the best meeting results, get inspired by our top Olympic athletes. The following meeting tips will help you make fast meetings a top priority.
Olympic tip 1: Take your stopwatch
Maybe you’ll get a few weird looks from your colleagues if you take a stopwatch to the meeting room but don’t let that put you off! Make sure you have a structured agenda in advance with timings for each item. If the time planned for a particular item is up, allow a further minute for rounding off before proceeding to the next item. You’ll soon see how quickly your personal meeting record will improve by focusing on timing!
Olympic tip 2: Avoid false starts
A lot of top athletes visualize a positive result before starting. Although a false start can be a hitch in this process, they don’t let that hamper them. In the meeting room too, it can be irritating to have to bring a latecomer up to speed after the meeting has started. It immediately takes the momentum out of the meeting. So don’t fill latecomers in during the meeting but keep your final objective in sight.
Olympic tip 3: Keep your energy level high
Top athletes think in terms of things that give them energy and sap energy. They do everything to achieve optimum fitness. Sitting for too long has no part in this. So get up out of your meeting chair a bit more often; it makes you sluggish and it’s simply not good for your health to sit for too long. Ever considered keeping the energy levels of your meetings high by discussing some items standing up? That keeps your colleagues active and more attentive. If you have to meet for longer, take a short break from time to time. After all, don’t Olympic athletes also take short breaks to refresh themselves with a drink?
Olympic tip 4: Top-level gear
The right shoes, aerodynamic clothing... For top athletes, the best gear makes the difference between winning and losing. It’s the same with meetings - an up-to-date meeting tool will boost your meeting speed. And that will certainly be so with a good tool for digital meetings. Participants add their documents online and make any changes. Everything is neatly ordered according to item and you can simply type in any comments you might have. This saves you and your colleagues a huge amount of time!
Olympic tip 5: the 10,000 hours rule
Didn’t you already improve the lap times of your meetings this week by using these tips? Then bear in mind that top athletes have to train very hard to win a medal, as shown by the 10,000 hours rule. According to this philosophy, everyone can reach the top if they train for only 10 years or for 10,000 hours. It won’t take that long before your meeting times are optimized, but practice makes perfect. If you want more tips for meetings, get our tip sheet!