Leadership Tip: How To Have Shorter Staff Meetings

By Dick Loizeaux

Does your staff begrudge time spent at staff meeting because they would rather be catching up on their ministry work? Do staff meetings go longer than you would like and seem to include wasted time? 

There is a cure: Multiple meetings with different purposes. Why? Because people are more efficient and productive with several small meetings than one long meeting.

In “Death By Meetings” Patrick Lencioni recommends considering 4 different kinds of meetings:

The Daily Check-In: 5-15 minute stand-up meetings primarily for giving quick updates, synching calendars, and aligning behind key priorities. Consider it the huddle before the pay.

The Weekly Tactical Meeting: 45-90 minutes to review weekly activities and resolve obstacles against top church priorities. Not for strategic discussions, vision casting, or teambuilding.

The Monthly Strategic Meeting: Here is where you can go 2-4 hours, dealing with critical issues affecting long term success, cast vision, discuss strategy, and do some teambuilding.

The Quarterly Off-Site Review: Vision, strategy, teambuilding, spiritual renewal.

The way you personally should conduct meetings will depend on the size of your staff, your style of leadership, and your church culture. But in general, more meetings and shorter meetings will usually be more effective. Studies show that our high-tech fast paced culture is moving away from sit-down meetings that last for a couple of hours to shorter (15 minute) stand up meetings. The reason is that it keeps the meeting more focused, reduces distractions, avoids soapboxes and rabbit trails, and shortens reports.

Why not experiment with different formats and see what works for you?

For another perspective on staff meetings by Thom Rainer, click here.  


Leadership, Dick Loizeaux