Don’t Sugarcoat the Briefing – It helps to be transparent when you brief your team before a deployment, a go-live or at the start of a shift to help set realistic expectations up front. I also recommend having an outline or agenda for each presenter to follow. For example, in the All-Hazards Incident Management Operational Period Briefing the Planning Section Chief sets up the meeting and facilitates the presentations.
Guess how it kicks off? “Please silence your cell phones. Hold all sidebar conversations to a minimum. We’ll get started with this Operational Period Briefing in x# minutes“. Sound familiar? You bet! It’s a simple, but effective way to remind everyone that we need to be able to hear the presenters and to please cut down on the chit chat. After all, out in the world we may be briefing responders that are preparing to search through rubble, canvas a hurricane torn area or more.
For project teams setting the tone up front is also helpful. Kick off a meeting with, “Hello everyone. We’re going to get started in x# minutes. Please mute your microphone when not talking so that others can hear.” or something of the like.
- Operational Period Briefing agenda from FEMA at https://emilms.fema.gov/is_0200c/groups/141.html
- Planning “P” meeting agendas from the U.S. Coast Guard at https://homeport.uscg.mil/Lists/Content/Attachments/2926/0-Agendas-All-New_5-14.pdf
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Stay safe, wash your hands and Godspeed,
Kevin Pannell, PMP, Creator & Host, ‘People, Process, Progress’ podcast
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