Mark Zuckerberg declared 2023 the “year of efficiency” following a first round of layoffs in November of 2022. Facebook is on to its second round of layoffs bringing the total to 21,000. Microsoft, Google, Amazon, and Salesforce have all had similar significant layoffs. Hiring on LinkedIn dropped by 23% in January 2023 compared to 2022 indicating a broad slow down in white-collar hiring beyond the mega tech firms.
Less hiring almost never means there is less work to do. Companies are asking their employees to do more with less. Company leaders seem to be feeling the pressure, and not always handling it well. Two company leaders recently found the wrong kind of notoriety under this pressure. One told their employees to “leave pity city” when discussing smaller bonuses and another praised a team member who sold the family dog after a return to office mandate. We love dogs by the way.
So, has 2023 delivered the answer to efficiency? Cut staff, hire less, toughen up, and come into the office. We believe the real work in finding efficiency is just starting.
Half of all meetings are a waste of time
A meeting is just an assembly of people for discussion. Taking shots at meetings is not new or novel. Ample comic strips, memes, statistics, articles, and books depict the wasted time most employees face at the hand of unnecessary or unstructured bad meetings. Bad meetings hurt efficiency in two ways: they take time away from productive work and they leave team members confused and frustrated. A survey of 182 senior managers reported in a 2017 HBR article summarizes the problem with these figures:
- 65% said meetings keep them from completing their own work.
- 71% said meetings are unproductive and inefficient.
- 64% said meetings come at the expense of deep thinking.
- 62% said meetings miss opportunities to bring the team closer together.
These figures should not be at all surprising given that at any organizational level, only around 20% of leaders receive any training on how to run a meeting. How can already stretched teams find a way to fix meeting productivity on top of their existing responsibilities?
Experienced facilitators turn unproductive meetings into efficiency boosting workshops
A trained facilitation professional transforms meetings into a workshop which both eliminates the waste of a bad meeting and creates real collaboration and productivity. Each team member attending a workshop is better positioned for success leaving a well run workshop. Facilitators make this happen by:
- Creating an agenda
- Removing nearly all biases
- Assuring all participants have a say
- Building consensus
- Reducing overall time to making decisions
Every organization will face significant challenges in 2023, the ‘year of efficiency.’ When your organization runs into a huge deal opportunity, a must-go-well project, or a crisis to solve, workshops will set the team on the right path.
Some organizations will find efficiency in 2023, others won’t
Don’t rely on the status quo or the one team member who’s ‘heard of facilitation, watched a video, and read one book.’ An experienced, full-time, independent facilitator will add significant value. It might be a challenge justifying consulting expenses in a year where budgets are tight. The reality is, facilitated workshops enhance collaboration within your teams and help your organization find real efficiency in 2023.