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  • Writer's pictureTünde Lukacs

Babbling Bob Derailing Your Meetings: Easy Fixes

Updated: Dec 20, 2023

Do you have a Babbling Bob disrupting your meetings? Babbling Bob loves to talk. He constantly steers the conversation off course. You just don't get to the end of the topics, because of him. It's especially tough when he is a more senior person. No one wants to step on toes, but keeping meetings on track is key. Here’s how to handle it without causing a stir.

Attendees of a meeting are frustrated because Babbling Bob doesn't stop talking
Babbling Bob is the main reason why the meeting is off-course

🚀 Set speaking guidelines.

Start by setting clear rules for talking. Say something like, "Let's keep our comments brief to include everyone's thoughts." It's a gentle way to remind everyone, including Babbling Bob, to share the floor.

📍 Use 'round-robin' speaking. Plan to go around the table, giving everyone a turn. Set the time for each person. This approach makes sure everyone gets a chance to speak and limits Bob's opportunity to dominate.

📢 Direct questions to others. If Bob starts to take over, tactfully cut in with a question to someone else. Try, "Interesting point, Bob. Emma, how do you see this?" It's a smooth way to redistribute the conversation.

🪝 Give these strategies a try in your next meeting. They're great for managing those long-winded talkers and keeping your meeting balanced and productive. You might find the discussion becomes more inclusive and focused. Care to share? 💭

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