Happy Monday, fellow managers and leaders! Ready to have a productive and impactful week? ✅

In today’s issue, we’re covering…

Let’s get into it! ✨


🆕 Listen to these 3 interviews to become a Supermanager

  1. Authentic’ is Better than ‘Decisive’: Why Great Leaders Meet Uncertainty with Curiosity with Steven Goldbach and Geoff Tuff (Chief Strategy Officer and Principal of Consulting at Deloitte). 
  2. Change Yourself, Change Your Team: The Underrated Leadership Principles All Good Managers Follow with Peter Anderton (Executive Coach).
  3. Are You a Lateral or Vertical Thinker? Why Thinking Outside the Box is a Leader’s Superpower with Paul Sloane (author of The Innovative Leader).

14 Strategies to Shorten Meetings at Work (7 min read)

TLDR: There’s a common misconception that all meetings have to run for a full hour, or be longer than 30 minutes 🙄. We’re here to help you adopt a new mindset: the length of your meeting should be determined by the number of things that need to be discussed. Here are 3 tips to shorten meetings at work and gain time back in your calendar:

  1. Share background materials before the meeting: During an interview with Colin Bryar (former Vice President of Amazon) we learned that narratives are key when it comes to decision making. Writing a well-thought-out, concise narrative that is circulated prior to the meeting is much more effective than presenting a PowerPoint that only leads to zoned-out meeting attendees.
  2. Use the parking lot method: If a certain line of conversation begins to wander away from the meeting agenda, evoke your right as the meeting host to move the talking point to the “parking lot” and revisit it at a more appropriate time. 
  3. Start at an unusual time: If you’re looking to host shorter meetings, try switching things up and kicking things off at an unusual time like 2:40pm, for example. 

What other strategy has worked for you when it comes to shortening meetings at work? Let us know by tagging @fellowapp on Twitter 🙂 


🤝 How to Manage Someone Older Than You (6 min read)

TLDR: As a manager, you have to juggle different personalities, career paths, and communication styles. At some point in your career, you’ll likely find yourself managing someone older than you. And while a couple of years isn’t a big deal, managing someone 10+ years older than you may be uncharted territory. Here are 3 out of 10 tips to consider when hiring someone older than you:

  1. Find ways to unblock them: You don’t want any of your direct reports to feel like you’re there to micromanage and tell them exactly what to do. Instead, focus on unblocking the experienced employee by connecting the dots between multiple areas of the team. 

    “A good manager, just like a good coach, will help her team focus on the problems that matter most. I may not have been capable of producing the same quality of design work as my most experienced reports, but because I was overseeing multiple areas, I was able to direct my report’s attention to where their skills will be most valuable, including finding opportunities for my senior team members to collaborate with other designers on the team.”
    – Julie Zhuo, author of The Making of a Manager
  2. Be authentic: Have an honest conversation with your direct report and ask them what exactly is the best way to support them in their role.
  3. Welcome feedback: Experienced employees are full of knowledge and expertise, so be open to hearing their feedback on work processes. Listen to their insights and take advantage of their way of thinking and what it brings to the table. 

🗣 9 Tips to Confidently Speak Up In Meetings (7 min read)

TLDR: If you’re shy, you just started with a new company, or you still aren’t quite comfortable navigating the remote work world, it can be stressful to know when and how you should speak up in meetings. We’re 3 (out of 9) strategies to speak up more confidently during in-person and remote meetings:

  1. Write talking points in advance: One of the best ways to practice speaking up in meetings is to add to the meeting agenda in advance. If you’re using a meeting agenda software like Fellow, you can prepare talking points before the meeting so everyone attending knows that you have something to discuss!
  2. Stop censoring yourself: Remember that you’ve been invited to the meeting for a reason. Someone knows the value that you bring to the project and wants to hear your thoughts. If you’re ever unsure of what your purpose is of the meeting, ask the host or a close co-worker who is also attending. Knowing how you’re expected to contribute in the meeting is a great way to see the value that you bring to a project. 
  3. Ease into it: A good way to start speaking up in meetings is by backing up the idea of another employee. For example, in a brainstorming session, you can show support or elaborate upon the idea provided by another team member. This contribution shows the meeting host that you are interested in being involved with the project. 

5 Micro-Resolutions to Reignite Your Management Style in 2022 (9 min read)

TLDR: With much work to do and the opportunity of a brand-new year upon us, where exactly should we as leaders and managers start? How do you go about achieving the lofty goal of “becoming a better leader” anyway? Samantha Rae Ayoub (communications executive and opinion writer at Fellow) has found the answer in one word – well, one hyphenated word: Micro-ResolutionsBelow are 3 (out of 5) micro-resolutions to get you inspired:

  1. Have difficult conversations: As a manager you have a duty to your people to have both the easy and the tough conversations. That project isn’t moving forward or was stalled by senior executives? Tell your team. Someone’s performance isn’t up to par? Talk to your employee and find out what’s going on. Someone said something inappropriate in a meeting? Speak to them ASAP and let them know it’s not ok. 
  2. Show up for your team: There is an art to showing up for your team and it certainly does not mean simply being available or saying you have an open-door policy. How you show up is up to you – but putting the effort in and figuring out what your people need from you and how you can best support them can certainly make all the difference. 
  3. Practice self-reflection: Hard work does indeed pay off, but literally no one wants to work for a burned out, frazzled boss who is spinning their wheels. Self-care is deeply personal and different for everyone – maybe it’s getting in a workout, updating your workspace, or carving out some time for a good book. Regardless of how you do it, make self-care a priority this year and be sure to work it into your schedule.

📅 Meeting template of the week

Keep your team inspired, aligned and informed using this daily team huddle template curated by Cameron Herold, COO at Alliance and author of “Meetings Suck”


… and that’s a wrap!  We hope that the content we curated inspires you to continue growing as a leader!

 If you enjoyed this issue, please share the newsletter with a colleague or friend.

Thanks for being part of our community,

Manuela & the Fellow.app team