Some people justify their salary by having meetings. But are the meetings effective?

Today I had an interesting meeting with a senior business person with experience across a lot of businesses as a consultant and as a leader within. We were talking about my favourite subject – meetings (yes, it’s sad isn’t it) and he made a comment that I had not heard quite so directly before.

He said he knows of many senior people in organisations who, in his opinion, seem to justify their salary by having meetings. He went on to opine that it’s as if they feel that working alone in their office is not regarded as productive work and that they must be seen to be busy in a meeting for people to think they are valuable. And so, they call meetings to show people that they are in fact busy, and therefore productive.

It’s a mindset. These people believe that meetings are their work, whereas, in my experience, the most productive people usually believe that meetings are an interruption to their real work. The real work happens when they are in their office using the talents for which they were employed – and that’s rarely their ability to call meetings!

Meetings are essential in every organisation. The key is to eliminate the ones that are of little or no value, and make the ones that are necessary, highly effective. Effective meetings are the key, not the number of meetings.

I’m really interested in your opinion about people you may have come across who have meetings to justify their job and their salary. Please comment or email me if you have had an experience you are willing to share.

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