Don't steal my time

2015-01-22

How often are we called to a meeting which turns out be a complete waste of time? It is mostly repetitive, poorly prepared and lacking a correct agenda. Do we really have to say yes every time there is a pling in our meeting calendar?

There is an exciting way to solve all this. Kinnarps has had a look at David Grady, a charismatic, American lecturer and psychologist who is on a global crusade to combat bad meetings. In short, he wants us to take back control of our calendars.In a brilliant TED.com presentation, which has soon been seen half a million times, Grady has an intelligent and equally humouristic go at all the time-wasting activities in our workplaces."If someone steals your office chair, you follow them and ask for it back. You don't let them get away with it, but a terrible meeting is actually worse. He says for instance that a chair can be replaced but any time wasted is gone forever.Grady wants us to think about meeting culture. How can it be that we don't place greater demands on our meetings before we on a whim agree to take part. Sometimes we hardly know any of the other meeting participants not to mention why we are there at all. This is a symptom Grady calls "Mindless Accept Syndrome".A good meeting can really make a difference. However our workplaces would be much better off if when we get a meeting invitation with insufficient details that we decline in a respectful manner and instead call up the person who wants us to attend the meeting and ask them to explain the reason for it. By changing our own behaviour we might be able to change that of others is one of Grady's intelligent opinions. Do watch Grady's presentation on TED.com – these few minutes will save you hours down the line.