Have Your People Call My People…

And, we’ll take a meeting, and do lunch. This famous Hollywood refrain has been said so many times as to become cliché. I guess I’m writing about it today, simply because the subject of meetings has come to the forefront, of if nothing else, my purview. Either that or a lot of other people have been writing, talking, blogging, etc. about them lately, and I figured that you, my three readers, would like my take.

I’m reminded of a story I heard once, when I was deeply ensconced in the tech sector, about a meeting that took place. Or rather, didn’t. Several attendees showed up, and waited for the meeting to start. And then, they waited some more. Finally, about ten minutes in, my friend spoke up, and asked, who’s leading this meeting? And he got the classic scene from well, any movie wherein no one wanted to take responsibility that was seated around the big conference table.

He proclaimed it, a Dilbert Meeting, and if you don’t read Dilbert everyday, you should be. Tell Scott Adams I said hello. In any case, my friend ultimately took control, and got something accomplished, and he realized later that a meeting had been scheduled by some generic meeting software that our company was using, if not properly. Turns out there was a similar meeting scheduled a month previous, and the secretary that posted it made it a monthly occurrence.

I had a conversation the other day, well, two days ago, actually, about meetings that exist simply to schedule other meetings. My friend stated that he’s advanced his division beyond that, so that actual work gets done. He wouldn’t explain to me how this works, however, my guess is that there’s only one person in his division that schedules meetings, and they’re responsible for the itinerary and who shows up, and who may or may not be asked to contribute.

In my industry, not to be confused with, the business as we’ve previously discussed, it’s become almost a habit to have a meeting, eat, and discuss what took place at the meeting. In essence, having two consecutive meetings for the price of one. There’s got to be a better way. Until such time as there aren’t meetings to discuss what took place at other meetings, and actual work gets done, in this specific case, getting a movie project greenlit, it would seem that this endless process of wasting time will continue.

I don’t have a good suggestion for making this process of salary justification stop, either. Yet another reason why I think Hollywood is broken, and will continue to be so, until there are fewer decision makers, and more people around to implement those decisions.

Adjust your expectations accordingly.

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