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Wasting Time


Wasting Time

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TravisDBA
TravisDBA
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Actually, I have known people, with children particularly, that actually come to work because it is less noisy and less interuptions than being at home. Again, it all depends upon your situation. You can't just apply stuff like this across the board for everyone, but I can bet if you give this option to some rather than others because they can do it, there will be crap over it from the ones choosing coming to the office, for whatever reason. This kind of stuff tends to cause more dissension and strife among people at the workplace than it causes overall benefit, in my experience anyway.. :-D

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"
dogramone
dogramone
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I have a very strict self rule on working from home, I won't. Two key reasons. Firstly as a project manager I feel I need to alwaays be available to help resolve issues. Much easier to co-ordinate things from the office where 60% of the people and resources reside. Secondly I like the seperation I get by keeping home for fun and work for work. Sure work can be fun but home is where I refresh and re-charge. I'm also known as a bit of a ludite and "old school".



Jeff Moden
Jeff Moden
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dogramone (10/11/2012)
Firstly as a project manager I feel I need to alwaays be available to help resolve issues.


dogramone for President!

This is the first time in a very long time where I've seen a Project Manager speak about being a resource and enabler rather than just a "controller".

--Jeff Moden

RBAR is pronounced ree-bar and is a Modenism for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
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Stephanie J Brown
Stephanie J Brown
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I'm constantly amazed by how many people think meetings are a waste of time.

The whole point of having a meeting is to exchange information - whether it's a staff meeting, a brainstorming meeting, a "how do we recover from this disaster" meeting, or a Scrum meeting.

If you are in a meeting and find yourself daydreaming or becoming sleepy, it might be for one of the following reasons, and you might be able to do something about it.

- you aren't paying attention. The people who invited you thought your input would be valuable, or that there is information you need to know. It's up to you to determine what your role is - ask questions, even if only to jot them on paper. Find ways to stay engaged without disrupting others (i.e. no under-the-breath running commentary unless that's normal at your workplace ;-) )

- the meeting really is that boring. (For instance, a sales pitch for the latest in vapor-ware.) If it's putting you to sleep, it's likely having that effect on others in the room. Take pity on them an yourself and raise the red flag (gently) to the presenter. Let them know what would work better: "It would really help me if you could show how your product can <insert your need here>."

- if it's a regularly scheduled meeting (staff, Scrum, etc) and it's always that uncomfortable, try a little one-on-one with the facilitator or manager and make suggestions for improvement. Challenge yourself - what would you change if you were running the meeting to make it More Productive?

- you only have a small part in a very long meeting. This may occur because you are a subject matter expert and need to be on hand in case a question should arise. Here's where telecommuters or distributed team members have an advantage; just announce that while you are "listening with one ear" you really won't be following the conversation closely - you'll be multi-tasking and working during the meeting. If they need your input someone needs to get your attention by calling your name - they can ask the question once you respond. (Yes, I telecommute and this has worked very well for me in this type of meeting.)

- you don't belong in the meeting. This doesn't happen very often in my experience (your reality may differ), but if it does, raise your hand (virtual or physical) and excuse yourself. "I'm sorry, this meeting doesn't seem to pertain to me. Do I really need to be here? I have other projects that could use my attention right now..."

I'm sure everyone can think of other examples and solutions to the dreaded non-productive meeting - and that's the kind we should all avoid. Productive meetings, on the other hand, contain great value and should be cherished, IMHO.


Here there be dragons...,

Steph Brown
call.copse
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I am not a PM dogramone but I completely agree with you and for exactly the same reasons - essentially a compartmentalist outlook. Or just mentalist. Also, I'm crap at working from home and easily distracted :-)

I've found meeting time seems to increase (and effectiveness decrease) with size of business. We just have short focussed meetings here in a smallish shop. I can see though that as we have grown there are more opportunities to get your ear chewed by those enjoying the sound of their own voices.
Eric M Russell
Eric M Russell
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Fortunately where I work we have few corporate or department wide meetings where attendance is required, maybe we'll get that once a month or every three months. There is a weekly team meeting that is kept to the point. It's good for everyone on the team to know what everyone else is working on, because you never know when a team member may leave or step in front of a bus, and then you'll be tasked with taking over their project tasks. Aside from that, there may be a half dozen other meetings, but they are collabortive in nature, typically about some specific issue or change in the requirements, and last no more than 1/2 hour.
I'd hate to work for an organization where people feel compelled to sleep through meetings, and I'd hate to work with team members who don't care enough to stay awake when something important regarding the project is being discussed.


"The universe is complicated and for the most part beyond your control, but your life is only as complicated as you choose it to be."
TravisDBA
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dogramone (10/11/2012)
I have a very strict self rule on working from home, I won't. Two key reasons. Firstly as a project manager I feel I need to alwaays be available to help resolve issues. Much easier to co-ordinate things from the office where 60% of the people and resources reside. Secondly I like the seperation I get by keeping home for fun and work for work. Sure work can be fun but home is where I refresh and re-charge. I'm also known as a bit of a ludite and "old school".



Believe me you are not alone. Many managers still feel that way today. This is why working remotely from home is not, and will not be widely accepted in the marketplace anytime soon. Many managers today still feel that working in your robe is not working. It's a strange perception, I know, but I know many that feel that way. They are two totally different environments and as you stated, should be kept that way for a reason. :-D

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"
Miles Neale
Miles Neale
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Meetings can be good. However, they need to be short, to the point, make decisions, and not be rambling sessions where everyone gets their say three or four times, a round table, a role call vote and then table it till the next meeting when the same thing happens.

And then there are those wonderful meeting where two do not agree and it is not taken off line but worked out over the next hour and a half with 15 people in the room. And in the end the resolution is that the two agree to disagree and really it is only semantics, and it does not really matter.

But a good short to the point meeting works. And it works very well if there are not too many of them.

M.

Not all gray hairs are Dinosaurs!
TravisDBA
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Miles Neale (10/12/2012)
Meetings can be good. However, they need to be short, to the point, make decisions, and not be rambling sessions where everyone gets their say three or four times, a round table, a role call vote and then table it till the next meeting when the same thing happens.

And then there are those wonderful meeting where two do not agree and it is not taken off line but worked out over the next hour and a half with 15 people in the room. And in the end the resolution is that the two agree to disagree and really it is only semantics, and it does not really matter.

But a good short to the point meeting works. And it works very well if there are not too many of them.

M.




Miles, there are many people in the government sector that do nothing but attend meetings. They don't produce a darn thing and they are still there. It's no small wonder why the government is in the state that it is in today. We have a wide-spread saying in the government sector: "You have 20% of your department doing 80% of the work.". :-D

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"
Eric M Russell
Eric M Russell
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TravisDBA (10/12/2012)
Miles Neale (10/12/2012)
Meetings can be good. However, they need to be short, to the point, make decisions, and not be rambling sessions where everyone gets their say three or four times, a round table, a role call vote and then table it till the next meeting when the same thing happens.

And then there are those wonderful meeting where two do not agree and it is not taken off line but worked out over the next hour and a half with 15 people in the room. And in the end the resolution is that the two agree to disagree and really it is only semantics, and it does not really matter.

But a good short to the point meeting works. And it works very well if there are not too many of them.

M.




Miles, there are many people in the government sector that do nothing but attend meetings. They don't produce a darn thing and they are still there. It's no small wonder why the government is in the state that it is in today. We have a wide-spread saying in the government sector: "You have 20% of your department doing 80% of the work.". :-D

When it comes to Congress passing new laws and regulations, I wish they were less productive.


"The universe is complicated and for the most part beyond your control, but your life is only as complicated as you choose it to be."
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