Office meetings are certainly not an uncommon thing. In fact, they are seen across the nation as a perfect way to waste most employees’ time. Eighty-nine percent (89%) of meetings are called by people who do no work but instead delegate overwhelming tasks to those persons who are paid less to do more, in order to make the person who called the meeting look good.
In the arena of corporate America, meetings are just another way to prove your worth to your superiors. They want to find out which employee is the strongest of the breed, as well as the most capable and/or most gullible.
I have one question for those superior managers: “Are you kidding me???” Between files, faxes, phone calls, invoices, reimbursements, allocation balances, inventories, memos, emails, help-desking, planning, problem-solving, painting on a fake smile to sustain remotely adequate customer service presence and the gracious 15 minutes of lunch between all the fiascos of the day, who the hell has time to stop to let their boss stroke their ego with empty words that doesn’t fill the void of a much needed monetary bonus? I’ll tell you who. People who spend eight hours a day checking in with spouses, playing solitaire and freecell on their computers, frequent facebookers, twitterers, hang-ten internet surfers, and all those who put their John Hancock on a paycheck.
Ironcially, once you’ve been dragged into a meeting kicking and screaming with stenopad in hand, you find that from the tireless minutes that have rolled away like sweat beads on the ends of a hairy areola, the pages of your notes are as blank as the expression of your face when you learned that your day would be interrupted with yet another hour’s worth of useless discussion, incomplete updates and additions to the load of work that already has you weighed down.
To those folks who hate meetings all together, aka every bottom feeder office employee on the planet, there is never a good time to have one simply because the only thing meetings are good for is:
- To give up time that you already know you don’t have; or
- To talk to people about things you don’t know, care about or understand; or
- Spot checking employees who aren’t busy at all; or
- Stealing the spotlight from employees who do all the work [but rarely get the credit]; or
- Catching up on all things unrelated to anything having to do with the reason for the meeting being called in the first place; or
- Making superior officers look good when deep down everyone knows they didn’t do a damn thing at all.
Alas, though you may fuss, cuss, gripe, snipe, hoop and holler, love ‘em or hate ‘em, meetings are a part of the protocol that comes with any job. The boss calls them and the employees answer like all trained pets do. And everyone knows the boss is never wrong! If anyone has a problem with that, might I suggest putting it in a memo and discussing it at the next meeting? The hard part is going to be sitting through the agenda until it’s time to discuss your issue. Lucky for you 90% of any effort is getting started.
Quote of the week: “Meetings are an addictive, highly self-indulgent activity that corporations and other large organizations habitually engage in only because they cannot masturbate.”