45 minute meetings

Meetings always expand to fill the available time. Therefore, first be sure that the meeting has a goal and when the goal is achieved, the meeting is done. Second, things often go faster and better when there is a known deadline. To this end we almost always set an end time when scheduling a meeting.

But we usually pick one hour for a meeting’s duration. Then we try to schedule back-to-back meetings and are surprised when everything turns into a flurry of rushing to the next meeting… that meeting that starts at 4, right after the meeting that ended at 4. This never works.

Schedule all your meetings to be 45 minutes. Magic happens.

Everything gets done in the 45 minutes—or if doesn’t, you had far too much packed into your usual one-hour meeting—and you have time for the rest of your life between the meetings.