Are Meetings Worth It?

2009 September 18

Creative Commons License photo credit: Iain Farrell

There it was. Rather, there they were. Usually every day.

I’m talking about meeting requests. They don’t flood my inbox, but they’re there. And they don’t go away unless I do something about them.

The trouble with meeting requests is that you can rarely gauge how much trouble they’re worth. You could say no to just the right contact who could have landed you on Oprah (if you know how to do this, I’d like to meet with you, actually). Or, you could say yes to meeting with someone who just wanted to sell you pet insurance. How can one navigate the muddy meeting waters?

Monica O’Brien, who writes at Twentyset, says this:

I get messages almost daily from people who read my blog and want to meet with me by phone or in-person. As a rule, though, I won’t meet with anyone unless they have interacted with me several times, or they give me a good reason (not just “let’s chat”). I realize this may make me seem snobby or elite, which isn’t my intention.

My intention is to avoid time sucks. I would love to be everyone’s friend, but it isn’t a reality for me at this time. I have work, school, a house, and a family that all need my attention too.

Go read the rest of her article. It’s really about finding the right mentor – and not just about scheduling meetings. But, she does bring to light pertinent realities when it comes to making sure you take the right meetings and ditch the bad ones.

Whether you’re meeting someone new or deciding if it’s worth running over to the other department to meet with someone, how do you decide which meetings to take? We’d love to hear how you avoid time sucks and really capitalize on face-to-face encounters.

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One Response leave one →
  1. 2009 September 26

    If I have a meeting, I at least schedule it during happy hour. I don’t lose any of my workday, and meeting over drinks is way more fun.

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