In today’s article, we will look at regular jour fixes and how you can organise them so that your participants leave the meeting energised and motivated.
You don’t think that’s possible?
We feel you.
We have also spent too much of our lives in meetings that have left us anything but energised and motivated.
Interactive Workshops and Training Courses vs. Jour Fixes
Making larger workshops and trainings courses (that last a day, or at least a few hours) interactive, incorporating group exercises, an energiser here and there, is a little easier. There is usually more time. And we want to tap into the creative potential of the group. Since there is something to work out together or something to learn.
This is more difficult with internal jour fixes, working group meetings, etc., which take place regularly and often last only an hour. Mostly they are “only” about passing on information. Making joint decisions.
But shouldn’t we make sure that these meetings also promote creativity, joy and team spirit? We have therefore brought you a few principles that you can follow so that your participants don’t nod off.
5 tips for energising Jour Fixes
1. Define clear goals and non-goals at least once
Sure, if you meet regularly and for the same purpose over and over again, then there is no need to have a flipchart with the goals and non-goals hanging in the room every time.
But at least ONCE they need to be clarified.
Is the meeting about sharing and finding out as much as possible about what’s going on with the colleague in the next room? Or do you only need the highlights that are relevant to everyone and instead more time to discuss certain upcoming topics?
The objectives – the WHY – the purpose of a meeting should be clear to all participants, otherwise frustration can quickly arise.
For example, when it comes to exchanging the most important highlights so that everyone has an overview and then colleague X talks about his project for 15 minutes and boss Y listens to him enthusiastically because she is so interested in the topic, while everyone else switches off after 3 minutes.
2. One person moderates
This brings us to the next important point.
In every meeting, no matter how small and short, there needs to be one person responsible for moderation.
In jour fixes, this is often the supervisor or someone with expertise in the content. This is where the danger of the above example lies: if I am interested in the content, I sometimes lose sight of the goal (in our example: highlights, NOT details!). It is the task of the moderator to keep an eye on this, to remain neutral and to manage time.
In our team meetings, we change the moderator from time to time, so that everyone gets a turn and, in the best case, someone moderates who may be less involved in the current discussion. It is also a nice opportunity for other staff members to practise moderating.
3. ALWAYS take time for a check in
We really can’t emphasise that often enough.
Especially in times of the pandemic, regular meetings are often the only time when everyone from the team gets together. You should definitely use at least a small part of this time for interpersonal issues. Sure, that’s always the first thing to fall away when there’s a lot to do. And it may seem redundant in a regular jour fixe. But why actually?
Here a few ideas:
If it has to be quick, for example, everyone can raise their hands at the same time and indicate their mood with their fingers from 0-5. If you come up with a 0 or 1, you can ask in an appreciative way if there is something the group should know before you start. But no answer is okay, too. Nevertheless, the group knows the current mood and can, in the best case, adapt to it a little.
Alternatively, you can also work with a mood barometer, which is more anonymous. At the start of the week, each employee puts a sticker on the barometer where they would currently assign themselves. In the meeting, changes or individual situations can be addressed. The mood barometer can also be varied, e.g. into two categories: 1. “How high is the workload?” and 2. “How are you doing with it?” – because a high workload does not always mean a bad mood.
Even at the regular jour fixe there can be a nice closing. This costs you a few minutes, but usually leaves your participants with a better feeling than simply saying “All clear? Okay, bye then!” .
Questions could be:“What is the highlight of today’s meeting for you? What was your biggest aha moment? What was the most interesting contribution?” .
It is not necessary to announce something important in terms of content, the next TO DOs, or the like. Quite the opposite – it may just as well be a good tip, something, that inspired me, the funny joke from colleague X. It is your task as a moderator to create a safe space so that your colleagues do not feel pressured to produce something particularly clever at the end.
5. Your own mindset
Last, but NEVER least: every single person in your meeting contributes with their own mindset to how the meeting goes. You can only control this so much.
But you can create the right conditions (see tips 1-4) and definitely work on your own mindset (tip 5).
We wish you every success with this! Feel free to tell us in the comments how you make regular meetings more interactive and energising!
All the best,
Your BusinessMind Team