Blog

JP Morgan’s CEO, Jamie Dimon, Doesn’t Mince Words   Especially when it comes to his feelings about meetings and their impact on business productivity.   In an article from TheStreet*, Mr Dimon is quoted as saying that “internal meetings can be a giant waste of time and money.” Taken at face value, few would disagree.   Digging deeper, Dimon sheds light on his claim by citing key ways to avoid meeting pitfalls – number one is to determine whether a meeting...

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Women in the Boardroom   In the spirit of International Women’s Day, we’d like to highlight an often overlooked dynamic taking place in meetings across corporate America.   It’s been widely acknowledged that there is a lack of female presence in many boardrooms. And even when there are women at the table, their voices may go unheard. Or worse their ideas are commandeered by a male colleague in the room who gets the credit and praise for having thought...

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Map Day group planning has been a tried and true project management technique for decades, primarily because it focuses on deliverables and establishing accountability between the teams responsible for them. Map Day involves getting all contributors to a project into a room for a day to create a high-level plan together.   For example, a senior project manager at a large, global 2000 company needed to launch a project that required several teams to get it done....

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How can you hear from everyone in a 5-minute meeting?   Have you heard of the 5-minute meeting? Company leaders in this Wall Street Journal story share their strategies for paring down meetings to mere minutes with outstanding, time-saving results. We are big fans of efficient meetings, but we recognize that there are introverts, non-native speakers, and others who may need more time to think before they share their ideas. Then there are the extroverts, the brainstormers,...

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Building Real Intelligence in an AI World   Artificial Intelligence is your new best friend. Chatbots—the human-ish voices and messages that guide you through some of your online activities—are multiplying. And now, companies are looking for ways to give them greater responsibility in the work world. In a recent Forbes article, Jeanne Meister reports that nearly 100 percent of HR leaders agree that chatbots will play a big role in enhancing employee experience in the future. Mundane...

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Meetings Your Team Will Thank You For   Meetings are the cornerstone of organizations. We need them to spark the conversations that help us collaborate, innovate and thrive. We’ve all been a part of great meetings that energized us and gave us the input we needed to move our projects and ideas forward. In this spirit, we've compiled the top six tips to organizing and leading meetings that your colleagues will thank you for!   1. Start on time...

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  Are your meetings lost in transcription?   How many times have you attended an in-person or remote meeting where great ideas were generated -- but you never saw the meeting notes? And what about the sessions where ideas flourished on flip charts and sticky notes, only to languish there for eternity? The reason? The person responsible for transcribing the meeting notes couldn’t read the handwriting, couldn’t make sense of the order, or simply couldn’t get to it.   Research...

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Five Tips for Making Long Distance Relationships Work (At Work)   Every once in a while, a big company makes the news when it calls its remote workforce back to a physical office. In May, that big company was IBM, who after years of promoting remote work decided it was time to bring some of its teams back to home base.   But remote work is still going strong in other companies. According to Global Workplace Analytics, about 3.7...

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Did IBM just make another 1980’s style, game-changing decision?   In today’s anytime, anywhere, cloud-based workforce, we have to wonder what IBM was really thinking when they recently recalled every remote worker* to a bricks and mortar office. While most companies are focusing on making remote working work, IBM has chosen a different path. However, judging by the 4000+ responses on LinkedIn, this path places the tech giant in a very controversial, if not dangerous, position. This...

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GoWall Turns Meeting Mayhem into Meeting Magic   Imagine you’ve got 1 hour scheduled for your meeting,10 attendees participating and 10 topics to discuss, define and prioritize. Two people are delayed so the meeting starts 5 minutes late. It takes another 5 minutes for introductions and to set the context for the meeting. And you need 3 minutes to introduce each of the 10 topics.   This leaves you with 20 minutes to get the meaningful feedback you need...

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The "Two Pizza Meeting Rule" -- It's Not About the Pizza   We’ve been hearing a lot about pizza lately and its relationship to meeting efficiency. Eg: Jeff Bezos’ nearly legendary statement about what constitutes a perfect size meeting for optimal efficiency. Also known as the ‘Two Pizza Rule:’ never invite more participants than two pizzas can feed.   But what if meeting efficiency has little to do with size and much more to do with better managing the...

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5 Tips to Help You Make Virtual Meetings Work   In a recent survey we conducted, 73% of respondents said they participated in mostly virtual or a combination of virtual and face-to-face meetings. And over 50% were disappointed that participants came to the meetings unprepared. For most companies, virtual meetings are integral to doing business. When run well, they can foster collaboration and increase engagement while building trust and morale among teams. When run poorly, they can...

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Bridge the Virtual Divide with Focused Conversations   Reducing office space and travel expenses is a great way for entrepreneurial businesses to save time and money. But the downside can be a lack of collaboration and esprit de corps among members of the team. This presents a considerable challenge as we know the number of companies doing business virtually is growing exponentially. According to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, the number of work-at-home employees has grown by 115% since 2005, nearly...

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Effectively Engaging Non-native Speakers Our business environments today are melting pots of rich, diverse knowledge. Tapping into this collective intelligence is often the goal and frequently the purpose of meetings. However when bringing together non-native speakers and teams with diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, there can be gaps in understanding. “Speaking the same language isn’t always as easy as it sounds,” making effective collaboration “one of the most persistent challenges in international business,” according to Pamela...

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After years of analyzing Millennials’ every move, HR, recruiting and other business functions are shifting their microscope on Generation Z, the group born from 1996 to 2010 that is finishing high school and entering the workforce.   Hannah Payne, a UCLA student and actress who made an appearance in Netflix’ “13 Reasons Why,” described her generation as “the first true digital natives,” a group that “takes in information instantaneously and loses interest just as fast.”   The finger-snap attention...

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Technology Has Changed Meeting Dynamics – for the Better   At the recent Tech Crunch Justice conference in San Francisco, LaFawn Davis, Global Head of Culture and Inclusion at Twilio shared this: “Diversity is being invited to the party, inclusion is being asked to dance, belonging is knowing all the songs.” This statement resonates with us at GoWall because it speaks to actions and feelings we have all experienced. And, we can connect it to technology’s ability...

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A global, non-profit organization identified ineffective meetings as the cause of gaping productivity losses, and decided to make a change. Looking deeper, they found one practice that was directly impacting productivity—the use of handwritten “post-it notes” during meetings. Participants would place their notes on a whiteboard, and a meeting leader would group the notes by topic for everyone to view and discuss....

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The Value of Anonymity in Meetings   We all agree that team morale is critical to project success and employee retention, but when was the last time you measured your team’s morale? If you called a meeting right now and asked everyone on your team to rate morale on a scale of 1 to 10, do you think you’d get honest responses?   Maybe. What if you gave them an anonymous option to use? Would you be open to...

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Diverse Thinking Can Produce Revenue-Generating Ideas   As the global economy pushes us toward ever-increasing diversity in the workforce, the practice of inclusion has become a business strategy. Seeking out, listening to and responding to all members of a team is more important than ever, especially as the diversity of our markets also broaden, and can have a direct impact on a company’s bottom line.   How can inclusion translate to revenue for your company?   Here’s a simple example:   One of...

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Innovation Forums Jump-start Flagging Account   Challenge   A national account manager at a Fortune 100 company was looking for new ways to fuel growth in his telecommunications account. To “think outside of the box” he needed access to his company’s distinguished engineering community, the organization’s top executive technical talent that was located worldwide. These were the people who had achieved the highest technical level possible in the company. These executives interacted with the firm’s largest customers to solve their...

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Designing Effective Meetings Starts with the End Game in Mind   In a recent New York Times Business article, author Adam Bryant presented rules for running effective meetings. He wrote about having an agenda, being on time, and finishing with an action plan. We applauded… and we have one more item to add:   The outcome.   A vision of the meeting outcome is more than an agenda—it’s the difference between knowing you want to go to France to see art...

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GoWall is the world’s first meeting app to use interactive “notes on a wall” technology to encourage dialogue and capture ideas from across the table or across the world, delivering 100% engagement and better meeting results.   Palo Alto, CA (April 14, 2017): GoWall, the meeting productivity app, has completed its beta stage and was officially released this month to significantly improve participation, input and morale, while reducing meeting duration by up to 50%. With US-based organizations...

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Uncovering the Liking Phenomenon in Tech   When GoWall added a “Like” feature to its interface in 2017, we were in good company. A few months earlier, Netflix had retired its five-star rating system for the thumbs-up “Like” icon. And everybody knows where the “Like” achieved superstardom—on Facebook’s endless scroll of food pics and perfect vacations.   When users of GoWall asked us to include the “Like” feature, it made perfect sense. During GoWall meetings, participants are posting their...

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Giving People What They Need to Participate   In her 2012 TED talk, Susan Cain, author of QUIET: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, defined a cultural bias that she called “the new group think,” a belief that all creativity comes from a gregarious place. She talked about how more schools and workplaces reflect this bias and, perhaps without realizing it, have mandated extensive group work. But constant togetherness doesn’t work for...

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“Without GoWall, I would not have been able to accomplish what we did in one day”   Challenge   Mark Morgan, a GoWall partner and professional facilitator, conducts strategy and leadership sessions for companies around the world. One of his clients, Proterra, is a leader in the design and manufacture of zero-emission electric buses. Recently, Proterra asked Mark to design and facilitate a session with their senior leadership team to establish the direction of Proterra’s growth strategy for the...

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Do these three things to get – and keep – everyone engaged   Every meeting leader knows what it feels like to hold the undivided attention of every participant in the room. It’s a heady feeling, and a tangible validation that you’ve done something unmistakably right in the planning and execution of your meeting.   But how do you capture 100% participation – and the value of the diverse input you get – every time? Here are three simple yet...

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The CEO of a European app development company wanted to hear his employees’ feedback and ideas about the direction of the company. He used surveys and polls, which only 60 to 70 percent of employees completed. It was a decent return, but he wasn’t hearing from everyone and the ideas weren’t free-flowing. Plus, the surveys required several email reminders, and the CEO had to give everyone at least a week to complete them....

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GoWall’s new website designed with your experience in mind GoWall launched its completely revamped website today, giving the world a graphical, behind-the-scenes view into the unique features and solutions that get people talking during meetings.   GoWall’s new site takes visitors on a visual tour of the app’s WallShareTM technology that borrows from the familiar concept of “notes on a wall.” Every participant has an equal opportunity to share, discuss and contribute ideas. Input from participants is posted...

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A European app development company met every two weeks for retrospective meetings after their Agile sprints. The product manager noticed that the same people did all the talking during the retrospectives, and that created unbalanced participation. It skewed the insights in favor of an outspoken few. This was a real problem, as the product manager needed to hear from everyone – introverts included – for Agile product development to succeed....

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A Fortune 100 company had a critical imperative: Hit an ambitious revenue target to assure growth in the new fiscal year. But challenges mounted, and by the middle of the first quarter, the company had only realized 10 percent of the goal. Key stakeholders were given a nearly impossible directive: Meet for two days, discuss the highly complex issues involved, and deliver a plan to meet the revenue goals. Thirty-one team members from Marketing, Sales,...

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