Slash and Burn your calendar – The 200 words project

We’ve heard numerous complaints about “too many meetings.” Meetings, like a snowball rolling down a mountain, develop ever greater inertia, roll down a path of their own – different from their initial purpose – and ensnare increasing numbers of people as a business grows.

To counter this effect, James Reinhart and the team at ThredUp, a clothing marketplace metamorphosing through hyper-growth, slashed and burned their calendars by deleting every standing and recurring meeting in their agendas. During the next few days, the team questioned what meetings should exist, who ought to attend them, and what their agendas and goals should be. In addition, the team pushed to cut meeting times in half from 50 to 25 minutes.

The impact to the company has been dramatic – fewer, shorter, more productive meetings. And, if a 100 person startup eliminates one 1 hour standing meeting each week from every employee’s calendar, they will have unlocked more than an extra man-year of work to allocate – a new “free” employee.

Slashing and burning calendars periodically challenges a company to allocate its most scarce resource, employees’ time, more effectively. By torching all the scheduling chaff that accumulates over time, companies can start fresh and cultivate a schedule to maximize company and employee performance (and happiness). – Tom Tunguz

Source and thanks to: VC Tom Tunguz’s blog