Stop "Running Late"

Stop “running late”

Three times this week someone was “late” to a meeting I was either running or attending. My placement in the meeting hierarchy is irrelevant but the tardiness isn’t.

It’s 2015. Every single one of us has a smartphone and many of us have if not a warable piece of smart technology — at least a watch. With all of us on facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Linkedin, Instagram, or YikYak — I wonder why more people can’t let you know they are running late.

Is it because you feel your time is more important than our time? Or that your attendance in that meeting is optional? Or maybe you just hate meetings?

Let’s tackle these one at a time. First, your time isn’t more important than anyone else’s time. In fact, time might be our most valued resource. So, if you are running behind pick up the phone and text, snap, tweet, or email someone to let them know. We don’t want to wait on you any more than you want to wait on us — but if you notify someone ahead of the meeting we could arrange accordingly.

If you are invited to a meeting, your attendance isn’t optional — that is why you were invited. Common courtesy would dictate that you treat that invitation with respect and show up, early preferably, but at least on time so that we can attend to business and get back to making things happen in the real world.

Which brings me to the last one, you hate meetings. No shit. We all do because most meetings either run too long OR…don’t start on time. I find the best way to manage meetings is to make them short and always start on time. But we can’t do that if you aren’t there.

If you’re not early, you’re late.

If everyone made this their mantra…think of how less we would have to meet and how much more we might get done instead of the time we waste, waiting for you.

Eric HultgrenComment