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Ending Meetings with Commitment

With Zoom, it's so easy hop from one meeting to the next. We present and get presented with ideas all day long. It's no wonder when the floor opens up for questions, the room falls silent. Silence is often taken as agreement. "No one is outright challenging me, so we must be good!" 

Even when presented with an idea that team members are wary of, no one raises their hand. They are unsure and rather not get their hands dirty. This is mistaken as consensus and initiatives move forward with unmotivated squads. 

To avoid this trap, companies like Intel and Amazon use "Disagree & Commit", where each person need to proactively declare their commitment before proceeding, if they don't, explain why.

The goal is not consensus. This is impractical for any healthy team where diverse opinions are encouraged. The point is to create an environment where all the relevant information is shared, getting us closer to the truth. 

Not everyone will fully agree with the final decision, and that's okay. We just need to get to a point where the reasoning is sound enough where everyone can comfortably commit. This could be done by scaling down the decision, tweaking details, approaching it as an experiment, and so on. 

Done mindfully, this speeds up decision making and improves engagement. Creating a stronger foundation for action. 


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