This week's RevGalBlogPals Friday Five is all about...meetings. Do you have a copy of the agenda?
1. What's your view of meetings? Choose one or more, or make up your own:
a) When they're good, they're good. I love the feeling of people working well together on a common goal.
b) I don't seek them out, but I recognize them as a necessary part of life.
c) The only good meeting is a canceled meeting.
2. Do you like some amount of community building or conversation, or are you all business?
I'd say about a 1-to-3 ratio of community building/conversation versus "bidness."
3. How do you feel about leading meetings? Share any particular strengths or weaknesses you have in this area.
I have been told that I lead good meetings because I keep them short, sweet and focused on the agenda. (See question 1.) Which is probably why I don't get asked to lead too many meetings.
4. Have you ever participated in a virtual meeting? (conference call, IM, chat, etc.) What do you think of this format?
I think something is lost with disembodied voices/written comments. On the other hand, I hate driving long distances, so if I had to choose between a face-to-face meeting in some distant metropolitan area or a virtual meeting, I'm going for the virtual meeting. And that way I don't have to dress up, either.
5. Share a story of a memorable meeting you attended.
A previous employer was very big on the management-fad-of-the-month; this was an organization where employees were asked to go to team-building workshops with "trust falls" and blindfolded walks in the woods, and where for awhile staff meetings started feeling like group therapy. I was working in a department of this organization largely staffed by overeducated, underemployed cynics, so these exercises in "Kumbaya" were met with much scorn and derision behind the closed doors of our offices. Anyway, we had been told to come to one staff meeting prepared to share a favorite song on tape, and talk about why it was important to us. The more...um...team-oriented employees chose the sort of songs one might expect -- "Wind Beneath My Wings," other songs of inspiration and fellowship and saccharine orchestral arrangements. In an act of relative chutzpah that surprises me now, I brought a recording of REM's "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)." I explained that it was a tune that helped energize me and put things in perspective when we had busy days with numerous expedited projects. Afterward, one of the Big Bosses came up to me and noted, "I don't know whether to be intrigued or frightened."
Hat tip to Despair.com , a source of hilarious anti-motivational merchandise for the kind of worker who'd choose "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" as an inspirational song for a staff meeting.