In the ideal meeting, all attendees participate, contributing diverse points of view and thinking together to reach new insights. But few meetings live up to this ideal, in large part because not everyone is able to effectively contribute. We recently asked employees at a large global bank a question: “When you have a contribution to make in a meeting, how often are you able to do so?” Only 35% said they felt able to make a contribution all the time.
There are three segments of the workforce who are routinely overlooked: introverts, remote workers, and women. As a leader, chances are you’re not actively silencing these voices – it’s more likely that hidden biases at play. Let’s look at these biases and what you can do to mitigate their influence.
How to Respond When You’re Put on the Spot in a Meeting
- Paul Axtell
How to Design an Agenda for an Effective Meeting
- Roger Schwarz
Do You Really Need to Hold That Meeting?
- Elizabeth Grace Saunders
Extroverted thinkers are happy to get new information in a meeting and to start making sense of it by talking through it. But introverted thinkers make their best contributions when they’ve had time to process relevant data and space to choose words carefully and share thoughtful conclusions. So while the extroverted thinkers are buzzing away, the introverted thinkers are quiet, still processing the information. Extroverts often misinterpret this silence as disagreement, disengagement, or lack of subject matter expertise, and often don’t make the effort to bring the introverts into the conversation.