Sunday, October 24th, 2021

How to Huddle for Results-Oriented Success

By Catherine Rocheleau on Apr 18 2012 • Filed under How-To

How to Huddle for resultsI am sure you have been to more than your fair share of meetings where time ticks by and dialogue rambles and results lag. A meeting like this is not considered your most productive activity of the day I’m sure! I cannot count the number of meetings I have attended and wondered why it was taking so long to move forward.

As a business consultant, I was frequently astounded labour, catering and other costs associated with these meetings. Focus and adhering to the agenda are particularly challenging. Why are meetings so popular and outcomes so poor?

I don’t have a good answer for this, but I do have an alternative I can share with you. Instead of a long, sit-down meeting in the boardroom, schedule a huddle style meeting – in work zones, in the board room or, when necessary, on the fly. I have used this approach for years and it allowed me to keep my finger on the pulse of the team and maintain strong relationships with each member. I gained more insights, shared more and connected more in significantly less time, which allowed me to focus on the strategic activities.

Focus on Actions and Results

Similar to a huddle in a football game before each play, team members come together to clarify what play will be executed. A huddle is a short meeting focused on actions and results. Each team member knows the agenda and is actively involved. As a team leader or business owner, it is your role to be clear on what is to be covered. Team members are responsible for being prepared with their input. Meetings limited to 10 minutes to ensure they are focused and effective.

Work Zone Centered

Huddles are held standing up and therefore can be conducted in the workzone. When people are not taken away from their primary work stations, there is no delay in the start time. Your team can step away from their desk, participate in the huddle and return to their routines in under 10 minutes.

Have a Huddle Start

Establishing huddles at the beginning of the work day offers an efficient and effective way to connect with team members. As the leader you are able to communicate tasks, work assignments and expectations. Your team can provide daily updates, ask for feedback, voice concerns and gain clarification. Everyone can contribute a great idea.

Be Friendly

Huddles do not stand on formality. You may be the manager or business owner, but stepping aside to be one of the team will help you all achieve more in less time, and at a lower cost! A huddle gives you a great opportunity to connect with your team at all levels. This approach also increases engagement and job satisfaction. When team members contribute, compliment them on their input – this offers added benefits for everyone involved.


A daily huddle at the beginning of each day is frequently the best as everyone set time aside and it provides a strong foundation to launch the work day. There are always situations where changes and last minute events require group consultation. These on-the-fly huddles address issues that cannot wait. They are focused and short and may only involve a few key members.

Why Do Huddles Work?

Most importantly, huddles focus on results and outcomes, therefore no time is wasted on long reports, unnecessary unfocused discussions or idle chatter. Huddles involve two way communication and input from every member of the huddle, rather than one way communication from the top often found in traditional meetings. Huddles also get business owners or senior managers to connect with employees and other team members in their work zone, rather than in the comfort of the boardroom.

Are you ready to change from long, unproductive meeting to short, results-oriented huddles?

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