Death By Meetings – Root Cause Analysis

I stumbled across an interesting Seth Godin post on the problem with meetings. He offers up 9 suggestions on making meetings better. But it doesn’t attack the underlying cause of meeting overload.

The larger problem with corporate cultureis the insidious issue of people just not doing their job. So meetingsare required to direct people in real time on what they need to do,what they need to be thinking about and what the end game should be.Gone are the days of self-initiative. Goodbye to the self starter.
Meetings are now to make sure people do what they are supposed to do.Then you meet again to make sure they’ve done what they said they woulddo. People need to be led by the hand, spoon fed the purpose of theirtasks. Even told what their feedback and engagement should include.

If you a teleworker, may the religious being of your choice takemercy on your soul, because now you’re tethered to a headset for thebetter part of the day, participating in even more meetings to combatthe fact that you’re a teleworker.

Sure, it’s good to talk about projects in real time, it’s nice to bein sync. There are a plethora of IT tools that manage both of theseactivities much better than what can be accomplished in an hour (or 2hour) meeting. Unfortunately there’s still an underlying fear of collaborationtools, and some folks are just plain too lazy to learn and experimentwith them. Hey – I’m in the lazy boat too on some activities.

My OutlookPersonal folder is 2.8 GB. It’s how I store stuff and stay organized.It’s an admitted critical flaw of mine. I’d love to port my work andprojects over to an interface that is shareable and collaborative. Mycompany provides some fairly reasonable tools to achieve this — but I’mspending too many hours in meetings to find any free time to embracesome of these IT initiatives We’ve got wikis, we’ve got a sharepoint server. Heck – we’ve even reached out and embraced blogging!

You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting upon an outstanding Web 2.0application that can simplify collaboration, project management anddeliverables, but corporations are sometimes nervous about employees outsourcing their own IT solutions

Still. In the grand scheme of things, it’s just easier to have a meeting.

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