The Difference Between Family Meetings and Huddles

Family meetings and huddles are both great ways to define and reinforce your family values. But realize that they are two separate entities and should be approached differently.

Huddles are about what happened the day before and what is on tap for today. Meetings are when everyone gets to talk about everything that’s going on in their lives and how they can and should live your family’s values. In either case, it’s a time to learn from mistakes and to teach as a cohesive family.

Effective family meetings and huddles are less about agendas and more about creating an environment for a positive conversation. They don’t have to be businesslike. Yes, at times, these meetings will be a place for serious discussion, but, in the end, they must be something the children enjoy; they must be positive experiences.

Remember, they’re conversations, not lectures.


Family Meetings and Huddles

Remember, communication involves both speaking and listening. It’s critically important that you, as a parent, get off your soapbox. Children don’t learn from lectures. They learn when you listen, understand their perspectives, and engage in conversations that build trust. Listening builds trust.

Not just you, but everyone needs to learn to listen. This is a life skill and tool that parents can teach by being the example, which means not reacting but listening and asking questions so that each child has a chance to learn through their experiences. And, of course, it means putting down your devices as well.

There are many ways to practice family meetings or huddles. The best one for you and your family is the one you actually implement and carry out. We have found that the easiest path to happiness in our family is to do something intentionally and consistently.

And without technology.

Ready to start holding your own family meetings and huddles? Download these worksheets to help keep everyone on the same page.

Author: Dale W. Vernon
Dale, a business and investment advisor and professed imperfect father of three children, is co-author of How Imperfect Parents Lead Great Families. He is a frequent speaker about the importance of establishing family values, creating a culture of communication in your home and being an intentional parent that understands the importance of being the best example you can for your children.
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