Since you have taken the time out of your schedule to read a review on the book DEATH BY MEETING, by Patrick Lenconi, chances are you have wasted countless hours in unproductive meetings and are seeking ways to make your meetings better. This book will help. However, if you are looking for a reason to reduce the amount of time spent in meetings, you may not like what the author has to say.
The book is laid out as a parable. Casey McDaniel is the CEO and founder of Yip Software. When Casey decides to take his company public, he quickly learns his own future hinges on his ability to make his meetings much more productive. Enter Will Peterson, a hard charging young executive seeking to enter the movie industry, who agrees to take a temporary assignment with Yip as Casey’s administrative assistant. After Will sits through a painfully unproductive meeting, he makes it his mission to re-vamp the Yip executive meetings.
As a student of the film industry, Will identifies the correlation between what makes a great movie and how to apply those same strategies to meetings. He identifies the various types of film viewing, from sit-coms to docudramas to full length feature films and even mini-series and how they each differ. He then charts how to apply his theories to the staff meetings at Yip.
Lenconi’s book has been around a few years now and has become a standard for producing better meetings, and with good reason. Lenconi totally destroys the idea of set agendas for most meetings, which makes perfect sense for anything other scheduled training meetings with specific topics to be covered. He also, as I mentioned earlier, proposes not less meetings, but more of the differing types of meetings from the daily morning huddle to weekly tactical, monthly strategy and finally quarterly off-site meetings.
Of course there is no “one size fits all” but no matter what industry you are in, you are sure to find ways to make your meetings far more productive than they currently are. You will certainly take away some great ideas from this book.
Monty Rainey is a District Manager working in the self storage industry since 1996 and currently overseeing 21 stores in the Austin & San Antonio, TX area. He is also a leadership coach and public speaker. For a free consultation, please contact Monty at 830-743-2139 or visit his website at
- Meetings – weapons of mass interruption (keithhoward.ca)