The Simple Tricks Leaders Employ for Getting Things Done Despite Spending Long Hours in Meetings

Use these tricks employed by leaders around the world to keep up their productivity and tick off all the items on their to-do list despite being cooped up in meetings all day, every day.


Have you ever had those days where it seems like you spent all your time rushing from one meeting to the other and never got the chance to finish your own work? I used to be like that until my mentor shared the simple tricks he used to squeeze other tasks in-between meetings and ensure that he stayed on top of his to-do list. With his tricks, and a few others that I've picked up along the way, I now find it easy to juggle my own work along with other collaborative work that requires me to be in lengthy meetings and brainstorming sessions with others. 

1) Get Ahead 

Why put off till tomorrow what you can do today? If you know that tomorrow is going to be another long day of meetings and you have some time today, utilize that to prepare for the meeting or get some minor tasks done. You can also review what tasks are due on the day after the meeting and get a head-start on those as well. 

2) Block off chunks of time 

Blocking off time in your schedule is a good way to ensure you get some work done. You can block anywhere between 45 minutes to three hours daily to motor through your tasks while still upholding your commitment to attend meetings. 

3) Create a List

At times you will find that you have a couple of minutes before your next meeting starts. Instead of scrolling through your social media feed like many of us are guilty of, your time is better spent working your way down the list of minor tasks that you can do in 5 minutes or less. 

4) Multi-task wisely

Multi-tasking often gets a bad rap because many people that multi-tasking doesn't allow you to give your full attention to either tasks that you are taking on. However if you combine a task that you can do without much focus with a task that requires a great deal of your attention, you can multitask without a hitch. For e.g. you can have your lunch during a meeting to avoid wasting time on it later or conduct a one-on-one discussion as you walk in the nearby park in order to get some exercise while doing your work. 

Also Read: The Secret to Conducting One-on-Ones that Actually Matter & Help your Employees 

5) Arrive Early or Leave Late

If you have a day full of meetings coming up, you might want to consider coming in early or staying a little later than usual in order to get things done. Being the early bird has its benefits - your colleagues and boss aren't in yet so you can get a distraction free environment to work in. 

Leaders have to stay on top of their game at all times. This requires them to be able to get things done even while collaborating, coaching and mentoring others. Use these tips to keep up your productivity even as you attend meetings after meetings. 

Questions for Reflection

How else do you ensure you do not lag behind on the tasks you are assigned while attending meetings?

Do you use any tools or frameworks to manage your productivity?

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Chaitra K

With a background in Literature and Psychology, and an MBA in Human Resources Management, Chaitra is responsible for the design and production of NKoach’s courses, workshops and corporate training programs. Her mission is to help people discover their passion and become better versions of themselves.

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