How to Master the Business Meeting

Small groups of people have better ideas and get more done. Making sure meetings are populated only by people who have something to contribute is essential to good business. 

What's the Latest Development?


Having been a close collaborator with Steve Jobs for over decade, Ken Segall learned how to effectively use business meetings to inspire workers and move projects forward. The most important rule of thumb is to only open meetings to those who have something to contribute, not simply to anyone whose work is tangentially related. "There’s no such thing as a 'mercy invitation,'" said Segall, who himself had been thrown out of meetings at his own agency after coming simply because he was invited. "Either you’re critical to the meeting or you’re not. It’s nothing personal, just business."

What's the Big Idea?

Simplicity is the biggest lesson that Segall says he learned from Jobs. Small groups of people have better ideas and get more done.  And when Segall explains that concept to business leaders, he rarely gets pushback. The problem, he says, is that a company's cultural inertia takes the reins and good ideas become subordinate to the phrase "That's not the way we do things here." Segall's other two rules of thumb for meetings are (2) to walk out if it lasts more than 30 minutes and (3) to do something productive the day of a meeting to make up for time you spent there. 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

Big Think Edge
  • The meaning of the word 'confidence' seems obvious. But it's not the same as self-esteem.
  • Confidence isn't just a feeling on your inside. It comes from taking action in the world.
  • Join Big Think Edge today and learn how to achieve more confidence when and where it really matters.

To boost your self-esteem, write about chapters of your life

If you're lacking confidence and feel like you could benefit from an ego boost, try writing your life story.

Personal Growth

In truth, so much of what happens to us in life is random – we are pawns at the mercy of Lady Luck. To take ownership of our experiences and exert a feeling of control over our future, we tell stories about ourselves that weave meaning and continuity into our personal identity.

Keep reading Show less

Futuristic inventions and emerging technologies that will change the world

What do the inventions of the future look like?

(Photo Credit: Rick Guidice/NASA)
Technology & Innovation
  • Self-sustaining space colonies and unlimited fusion energy would bring humanity to a new point in our evolution.
  • Flying cars and robot butlers could be the next paradigm shift in our tech appetite for change.
  • Death and consensus reality might soon become obsolete.
Keep reading Show less

Ashes of cat named Pikachu to be launched into space

A space memorial company plans to launch the ashes of "Pikachu," a well-loved Tabby, into space.

GoFundMe/Steve Munt
Culture & Religion
  • Steve Munt, Pikachu's owner, created a GoFundMe page to raise money for the mission.
  • If all goes according to plan, Pikachu will be the second cat to enter space, the first being a French feline named Felicette.
  • It might seem frivolous, but the cat-lovers commenting on Munt's GoFundMe page would likely disagree.
Keep reading Show less