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In the past, business meetings were treated like formal events. They were scheduled days or weeks in advance, often on a recurring basis (e.g. every second Tuesday), and had a defined start time and end time. Typically, these meetings had a named meeting host who managed the session and guided the team through a pre-published agenda.
Although formal meetings are not likely to go extinct in the near future, less formal, unscripted, impromptu “teaming sessions” will, and for many have already become, daily business.
But teaming sessions work differently. While traditional meetings include a defined hierarchy with the leader (and his direct reports or co-presenters) sitting at the head of the table, teaming sessions are leaderless. Instead, like a meeting of the Knights of the Round Table, everyone is (in theory) an equal participant and is equally important. For these sessions, the ideal seating arrangement is a round or oval table as this fosters a feeling of democracy and equality. In such a teaming session, the participants huddle around the table and work together to achieve a common goal.