Leadership Nudge® 374 – Why should I have a weekly OPS meeting? admin February 9, 2022

Leadership Nudge® 374 – Why should I have a weekly OPS meeting?

Getting your team together for a weekly meeting allows them to share projects and intent with each other, get and give feedback about how certain actions affect other projects, and work together as a team toward organizational goals.

Hey, David Marquet here. 

So I recently started working with a senior executive at a FINTECH company. And I said something like, “So at your weekly OPS meeting . . .” 

And, I mean, assuming that they did with a weekly OPS meeting. And he said we don’t have a weekly OPS meeting, I just meet with all my, my guys my direct reports, once a week individually. And there were five. And I said, “Well, yeah, I think maybe you want to have a weekly get together and he said “Well, why would I want to do that?” 

Which initially struck me as – well, that’s a dumb question. But then I started thinking about it. So, well, what’s my answer to that? And here’s what I think.  

So much of our time, we, as leaders in organizations, our focus is either up or down. Like, what does the boss want? Well, what does the organization want? How do I get my team to do it? 

And this up/down action, when you think about it all throughout the organization, creates stovepipes. Now, I’ve never heard anyone say they want more stove pipes. Everyone tells me, “I want to break down the stove pipes.” 

And we do that by going like this – turning left and right and seeing what our peers are doing. So when you don’t have a weekly ops meeting, you’re just reinforcing those communication paths that are from each of your people up to you. And then so Person A talks to you, and then you talk to person B about what Person A talked about. Now, yeah, they could get together, maybe, but let’s just facilitate that and get them together.  

And the point of that weekly OPS meeting is don’t replicate that – where everyone’s sitting around the table, and each person talks in turn to you. They should be talking to the group. I would always say over and over again, “Don’t look at me, don’t look at me.” I sat at the end of the table as the Captain. And they have to look at each other. This is about you communicating to each other and asking each other questions. And then about, “Hey, what can I do? How can I support?” Talk about how that’s gonna affect your side of things, and so on.  

So the idea is the weekly OPS meeting is a way of exercising what we call horizontal leadership, and reinforcing those kinds of communication paths as opposed to just this kind of a communication path.  

I’m David Marquet. I’d love to know what kind of meeting rhythm you guys have. Is a weekly OPS meeting unnecessary? Is that out of date? We come up with something better than that? Or maybe we have too many meetings.