Momentum Podcast: 741
Stop Talking During Meetings
by Alex Charfen
This may be the most counterintuitive advice you’ve heard as ana entrepreneur.
During a discussion at our last event, one of my favorite memories Rachel Rodgers exclaimed “I’m just going to stop talking to meetings!”
Alex Charfen, a business growth coach who helps entrepreneurs grow and scale their businesses, gives practical, tangible, and actionable tips that you can implement into your business right now.
The members of our Grow in Scale group all laughed and thought it was funny that she said that.￼ Rachel is hilarious and she is always joking, but this wasn’t a joke. It was actually serious.
As entrepreneurs, the more we talk in meetings, the more we dominate the conversation, the more we are driving in the more we end up owning.
If we want our team to step up, we have to let them. Part of that includes letting them talk in meetings, express themselves, and acting as a guide rather than taking over the conversation.
Your business has the potential to change the world, and the only way to see that potential become a reality is to implement a strategic plan. If you're ready to learn more, go to predictableplanningsystem.com to get started.
Our entrepreneurial journey doesn't end here! Be sure to check out our Facebook Community filled with entrepreneurs just like you who are getting into momentum and building world-changing empires charfen.com/community
If you are an entrepreneur who is listening in and you can relate, then be sure and head over to momentumplanner.com/mps and gain access to one of the most requested business tools to grow and scale your business in any market condition, even in this one.
Full Audio Transcript
This is the Momentum podcast. Hello. I hope you're well. Good morning. I'm here in Austin, Texas. If you haven't seen any of my videos, we are back from our epic almost four week road trip, but not completely back. I mean, this Airbnb here, not in my normal environment, still trying to get grounded, check back in get my feet, literally get my feet back on the ground. But wanted to check in on this topic that. That's so important, you know, let me set this up for you. So at the last event that we had, you know, we have these these mastermind events with all of the members that we have.
And at those events, I separate and I'm with our group that we call growing scale. But it's really the highest level members we have. Every person in the room has over a three million dollar business. Every person in the room is using our systems. And we were having this discussion about getting your team to step up and getting your team to take initiative. And we were in this discussion of, you know, in order for that to happen as entrepreneurs, if we want somebody to step up, we actually have to get out of the way. If we want somebody to take responsibility, we actually have to give it to them. And Rachel Rogers, who is hilarious and one of my favorite people on the planet, I just saw her on another call yesterday, Rachel, out of kind of in the middle of our conversation, just declared, well, I'm just going to stop talking in meetings.
And everyone on the call started laughing because of the way she said it. And I actually said, hey, guys, I know this is funny, but there's a lot of truth to what Rachel is saying. I'm Alex Charfen, and this is the momentum podcast made for empire builders, game changers, trailblazers, shot takers, record breakers, world makers and creators of all kinds, those among us who can't turn it off and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed with creating momentum so we can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution. Sure, we pay attention to their rules, but only so that we can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will. We don't accept our destiny. We define it. We don't understand defeat because you only lose if you stop. And we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately to the status quo, we are the minority, the few who are willing to hallucinate. There could be a better future. And instead of just daydreaming of what could be, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real.
We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most important people in the world, because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent, positive human evolution and we always will be. In fact, let me share with you an anecdote from probably. Five or six years ago, so there was a time, you know, Cadey and I had a huge real estate project called the Certified Distressed Property Expert, and there was a time for a while after we had the CDB where I was doing a lot of one on one consulting and consulting around business growth and operations and team communication and team building. And I was consulting with I, you know, haven't I don't have permission to share this. So I was consulting with an incredibly talented entrepreneur and he had a business in the medical space and he had a pretty substantial team. And one of the reasons he reached out to me is he's like Alex. You know, I've got this business, it's growing. It's doing well. But I just I have a great team. I love my leadership team. And I always know when when somebody starts telling me how great their team is, they're going to tell me what the issue is, is like. I love my team. It's a great team, but I can't get them to step up. I can't get them to take initiative.
It feels like I'm always doing everything. And so we talked for a while and we set up a contract and we agreed that I would come and and like facility, you know, being being one first. I like to be in it in a meeting and observe and then start facilitating so that when I was consulting, I don't do this anymore. But I went out I went out to his to his business. I was in one of the meetings with his team and it was probably, I don't know, nine minutes into the meeting that I could tell what the problem was. And it was painfully obvious and so clear that the issue he was having was he was taking over everything in the meeting. And here's here's what was happening. Somebody would say something like, hey, we need to do this thing. And then he would say, well, here's how we do it and this is what we need to do. That's OK.
What's next? And he he he was so dominant in the meeting that he didn't let anybody else have a presence, have have initiative, take Initiative B there. He literally dominated the conversation throughout the entire meeting that I was in. So about an hour, I saw the problem almost immediately. And afterwards we were talking and I said, you know, here's here's the challenge that you have, is that if you if you if your team doesn't step off, your team's not stepping up. If your team's not taking initiative, if your team isn't doing what you want them to, there's a lot of different reasons this could happen. Oh, there's my daughter Ragan. She didn't know I was on a Facebook live. There's a lot more in a Airbnb, so I was going to happen. He didn't he didn't understand that. Here's what was happening. So he wasn't leaving any room for his team to actually step up to participate.
If there was a question, he answered it. If there was a pause, if there was a pause in the conversation, he filled the pause in the conversation. I'm like, you know, you're not even letting ideas naturally develop here. You're dominating the meeting so much. You're taking over the meeting so much that here's what happened. By the end of his meeting, he owned almost everything. And I don't mean he walked away actually owning it. Here's what I mean, is he walked away, having commented and modified and questioned and challenged so much that he modified and changed everything in the meeting. And here's what happens when we're talking too much in meetings, especially as the CEO, especially as the person in charge. What happens is when we talk, no one else is talking.
When we talk, we become the most important person at the table. When we talk, we always have the highest authority. And when we talk, we always have the highest influence. So if if when we talk, no one else can talk. We're the most important. We have the highest authority. We have the highest influence. We own everything that happens in that meeting. And so here's what I've seen happen and what happened in the meeting that I was in in this medical company when when I was sitting there is what I know. Is he. No matter what his team was thinking coming into the meeting, there was a different outcome going out of the meeting and maybe some of them matched up, maybe what he influence matched up with somebody wanted with what somebody wanted to do or wanted to discuss. But there's no way it could have happened across the board unless they got lucky. And it certainly was going to happen inconsistently, consistently, because when he was talking, he lowered his team's initiative. If you're the one talking all the time, you're not giving them space to actually step up. When he was talking, he was actually distracting from and confusing ideas.
When he was talking, he was actually shutting out the other people at the table. And when he was talking, he commanded all the attention and authority and we often influence. We often over influence when we talk too much in meetings, and so that declaration that Rachel made in our last event when she said, I'm just going to stop talking at meetings, we actually had a long discussion about it. And, you know, I brought it together and said, you know, hey, we all really need to, like, pay attention to this very funny comment, but very real issue of as the entrepreneur. If we're the one who's talking in meetings, we're taking over. And so here's another way to look at it. The less you talk, the more they will the less you take over, the more they they will they will contribute, the less you take initiative, the more space you're leaving for them to take initiative. If you show up to a meeting with all the energy and command, to take it over, to run it, to tell everybody what to do, no question everything to to to have your voice heard you looking at that on the reverse, you take those opportunities away from your team members. So if you're an entrepreneur with a team, consider stop talking in minutes. And I don't mean completely. But here's here's one of the meditations that I use going into a meeting. I just had a big meeting with my team yesterday. We set up all of our productivity for the month of August. I did ask a few questions, but the meditation that I have when I'm in a meeting is can somebody else answer this? Is somebody else going to ask the question, is it really necessary for me to interrupt right now? Is this something that's really making me uncomfortable or is this something I just kind of feel like I need to say? And here's what I found.
The more I allow my team to step up, the less that I interrupt and drive and try and take over. And the more space I create, the more I met with my team taking up that space, driving, taking initiative, showing up like we need them to and making the decisions we need to move our company forward. This is a big lesson for us as entrepreneurs, because in the early days of our company, if we don't talk in meetings, nobody's there. Like when one is just us, we have to do a lot of the talking. When we have a few contractors and we're just getting started, we still have to be driving everything. And it is so hard to drop that behavioral change of driving everything and letting other people do it. So sometimes a physiological cue like this, like literally telling yourself, do not talk in this meeting unless it's absolutely necessary, will help you create the space where your team can step up, take initiative and achieve the goals you and your team want to achieve. Thanks for being here with me this morning. If this meant something to you, please tag somebody who who needs it or share this with the world. I would really appreciate it. And if you're an entrepreneur who's building a team and you want help with building that team and having the process and the structure and the routine that helps a team create momentum and move forward indefinitely, like if you want to have a team where you call your shots and your team gets out in front of you and helps you get there, that's where we help entrepreneurs do go to billionaire co dotcom is just billionaire co COCOM. Answer a few questions for my team. You will be able to see our billionaire code, which is the nine levels it takes, go from zero to 100 million dollars as an entrepreneur.
And if you like, you can also set up a call with my team to talk about how we can help you grow and scale consistently. So remember, next time you go into a meeting, if you have a team, if you've hired people to step up for you, if you've hired people to take initiative and answer questions, stop doing it yourself, create the space for them to do it and transfer that responsibility. And you will find your business growing faster and you will find you have a lot less anxiety. Thanks, everybody. I appreciate you being here this morning.