How nice, how aligned

by Chris Chambers on February 9, 2012

As a parent of school age children, there is nothing more frustrating than the sudden realization that my kids are now getting their information from sources other than our family. When we were their one and only encyclopedia, things were good. It gave me this sublime sense of control. Even when, and this never, ever happened, I didn’t know the answer to their question and didn’t have Google around to tell me…so I made something up.

It wasn’t like they were fact checking me. Until they were.

Now they get their own information from Google, and their teachers…and their friends and on and on.

What I wouldn’t give to get that control back. If my life were a sitcom, this would be the moment when the screen blurs, and the fuzzy daydream would pop up. It would show me on my monthly conference call with every possible person my kids talk to. And I’d be working my way down a checklist: guns? bad. sharing? good. the sky blue? because of the reflection of the earth’s surface which is predominantly water. Okay, everyone got it? and break.

I know, I know. I can’t do that for my kids. But…I wonder if I can do it for a meeting.

Just like the veritable information my kids get from an eclectic crew of people every day, meeting attendees receive a wide range of information throughout a meeting from presenters, management, trainers and keynote speakers.

Meeting stakeholders can sculpt content, PowerPoint slides, templates, curriculum and design…but the human elements and content deliverers are a bit of a wild card. How nice would it be if all of these human pieces of the meeting could work synchronously.

I’m not suggesting that we have the presenters and speakers and trainers give the same information, let’s just make sure it’s aligned. We don’t want them to severely contradict each other, or the main message of the conference — but, we do want them to give many different perspectives. We don’t want them to talk about the same things, (for instance, if, when talking about a company’s that show true teamwork, they all reference Nike, it’s not so good) — but we do want them to touch back to the topic at hand.

Can it be done?

Could my sitcom-like conference call become a reality. It doesn’t seem that hard. Just get everyone on a quick call, allow each to give highlights and listen to the stakeholders give a topline on meeting and content directives. Maybe it isn’t even a call…just a sharing of decks? Bottomline: get them together somehow so that everyone is in the know: who speaks before, who speaks after…etc.

All in the name of meeting cohesion, clarity and stellar attendee experience, as we send them out into the world…on their own.

Image credit: richevenhouse

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