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Constructive and Effective Participation

Bored? Always arguing? Confused?
How are YOU contributing to company meetings?

Despite all the advances in communication technology, there is still no substitute for a group of people getting together. We need meetings.

When they work properly, they make our organizations run smoother and our teams function more effectively.

Of course, when meetings go badly it’s a different story. All those taking part in a meeting must prepare properly, be punctual, and make a positive contribution; as well as avoid and cope with destructive behaviour. Going to a Meeting clarifies These important roles for the attendee, so that everyone can get the most out of meetings.

Going To A Meeting is a humorous two-part series hosted by John Cleese. The Series is based on a group of middle managers in a large hospital.

PART 1: "Messing Up A Meeting" - 17 Minutes

Messing up a meeting, focuses on Jeremy preparing to go to a regular meeting with his colleagues. Unfortunately ’preparing’ doesn’t describe what we see him doing. ’Grabbing a few papers and turning up late’ would be more accurate. The narrator, John Cleese, tries to warn him that this isn’t good enough, but he is in too much of a hurry to listen. The meeting, inevitably, is a disaster for him. On his return, Cleese explains what he ought to have done and he gets another chance. The results of doing his homework properly produce an entirely different outcome.

Jeremy’s problems are not over though. First, he irritates the chair by talking when he has nothing to say and refusing to stick to the agenda. Then he gets into a blazing row with a colleague by disagreeing with him in entirely the wrong way. In both cases, Cleese shows him what he has done wrong and how to change his behaviour for the better by keeping it simple, cool and courteous.

Messing Up A Meeting shows how to avoid common mistakes, how to prepare, how to get points across and win arguments. And how to not look like a fool in front of the boss!

Key Messages

  • Do your homework - research the facts, present your case professionally and prepare for objections
  • Keep it short - stick to the point, stick to the agenda and if you’ve got nothing to say, keep quiet
  • Keep it cool and courteous - use questions, not contradiction, show you’ve been listening, respect other’s arguments, admit your weak points and others’ strong ones

PART 2: "Meeting Menaces" 21 Minutes

Meeting Menaces contains five short sequences, introduced by John Cleese. These show how to cope with colleagues whose behaviour stops meetings from getting results. Jeremy fails to handle the destructive behaviour of each of the menaces and the meeting they are all attending becomes a farce.

The Meeting Menaces

  • The waffler is guilty of going on and on, wasting time and contributing nothing to the meeting.
  • The turf warrior is only interested in defending the interests and reputation of her department.
  • The assassin has no ideas of his own, so prefers to shoot down others.
  • The dominatorwould rather steamroller over other opinions.
  • The interrupter jumps in when others are speaking just because he thinks what he has to say is more important than anyone else.

However, following guidance from Cleese, Jeremy learns the techniques for handling each menace correctly and gets the meeting back on track.

The Benefits:

  • Staff will learn how to get the best out of going to meetings
  • Quality of meetings will improve
  • Better meetings will build teams and improve performance
  • Demonstrates how easy it can be to handle the various personalities you encounter in the meeting arena
  • By avoiding conflict between participants, meetings will become far more effective
  • Suitable for anybody who attends meetings
  • Very memorable program

’A good investment for refreshing the managers of today and training those of the future.’
Jan Golding, Training magazine

Program Includes

  • DVD Part 1 (20 mins)
  • DVD Part 2 (20 mins)
  • CD-ROM containing:
    - Leader’s Guide
    - Participant Worksheets
    - PowerPoint Presentation
    - Self-study Workbook

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Yes, we do still include a popcorn package with each DVD purchase. It’s our way of saying "thank you" for being our customer!

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