If you’ve been an in-house lawyer long enough you know that one thing as inevitable as taxes, death, and another Fast and the Furious movie is meetings. Lots and lots of meetings. Meetings you set, meetings you’re invited to, meetings with the boss, meetings as the boss, status meetings, “kick-off” meetings, post-mortem meetings, meetings with law firms, meetings about all the damn meetings you’re having, meetings… well, you get the point. Some days you look at your calendar and it’s back-to-back-to-back-to-back meetings. There is barely time to go to the bathroom, let alone get something to eat or just catch your breath (or Heaven forbid do some work). Worst of all, sometimes you’re sitting in a meeting asking yourself “why the hell am I here?” or “what’s the point of this meeting?” If you’ve had enough of the Alcatraz I call “Meeting Hell,” then read on. Time for a jailbreak.
I’ve been around for a while and I’ve hosted a lot of meetings and I’ve attended a lot of meetings. I’ve also found ways to get out of meetings or, if not, make them more productive and less painful. This edition of “Ten Thing” discusses my tips for escaping Meeting Hell. So, step into my cell and let’s have a chat. And keep it down, the warden has ears everywhere: