Echoing Quiet author Susan Cain's point that the loudest people don't have the best ideas and can, in fact, hamstring the ideas generation process.
"Vocal, overconfident team members have a disproportionate influence while shy contributors lose faith in their own proposals," Jarrett writes, drawing from a Swiss and Hungarian study.
The solution: make sure everyone involved notes their ideas and prediction before the discussion--and influencing--begins.
When teams fail on projects, companies will make inquiries to find out what went wrong. Jarrett writes that the downfall is often caused by project groups growing isolated and inward-looking, a symptom of the "unrealistic optimism that often bedevils creative teams."
To tackle this, Jarrett suggests a bit of healthy incredulity from decisions researcher Gary Klein: air out reservations with a "pre-mortem," a thought experiment where members forecast that their project fell apart in the future--and then backtrack to the present to find out why.
If you're having meetings, research suggests that you need them to be crisp. Jarrett notes a 2011 study that found that 367 American employees across industries didn't care so much about how long a meeting lasted, but whether it started and ended on time.
And when in a week should you have a meeting? According to a 2009 analysis by scheduling service When Is Good, people's flexibility peaks at 3 p.m. on Tuesdays.
So we'll see you in the conference room then. Hope you have your pre-mortem ready.
[Image: Flickr user Patrick Hoesly]