Anything else?

So often in meetings we claim that we want to hear from folks but actually communicate that we’d like them to stay quiet.

Open-ended questions, silences that last more than five seconds, smiling – people respond to those.

“Anything else?”   That provokes silence.

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2 Responses to Anything else?

  1. Sasha, I agree that “Anything else?” has the effect you describe. Yet I find that a slight mod—”What else?” plus shutting my mouth—works.

  2. Laura Weed says:

    And I’m chuckling because “Anything else?” is the cue I wait for. To me it signals that I can bring up concerns even if they’re on a new topic. I usually reply, “I was hoping we could talk about….” which usually starts a new meeting that I didn’t have to schedule, interrupt my tasks for, and for which people have to speak candidly not having had a chance to prepare too much. We can always schedule a second meeting if more data is necessary, but I never miss a chance to leap at the question, “Anything else?”

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