When I see a laptop in a meeting I assume you’re cruising for porn.
Okay, that’s little extreme. I know you’re probably not cruising for porn, but I think it. You’re probably doing email, or writing a report, or something half-assed productive, maybe. But you’re not paying attention to the meeting. And that pisses me off.
If you’re not contributing to the meeting and not paying attention, then you’re wasting your, my, and the organization’s time. And the time of everybody else in the meeting. Because we have to go back and repeat things just for you when you should have paid attention.
Your message to everybody in the meeting is “I have to be here, but I have more important things to do. So f*** all of you, I’m going to do the more important stuff in front of you now.” And that’s the generous interpretation that assumes you’re doing something work-related. Probably because you can’t manage your time well enough to get it done before the deadline.
So, to summarize, when you bring a lap-top to a meeting, and you’re not the assigned scribe or doing real-time research in support of the meeting, then I’m going to assume one or more of the following:
- You can’t get your work done in the allotted time
- You don’t respect me or the people who you’re meeting with
- You think this meeting is a waste of your time (which may be true, so then why are you there?)
- You waste company resources – your salary – by showing up to company meeting and not contributing anything because you’re too busy playing on your machine
- The work you’re doing is of inferior quality (I believe multi-tasking is evil, but that’s a separate topic)
Please don’t do it. If other people in the room don’t think you’re listening, you’re not. You’re just damaging your relationships with them.
Bernie works with small, medium (and sometimes) large companies, start-ups, and volunteer organizations to help them set a vision that is executable, effective, and to surround themselves with people who will help them succeed. I believe the workplace is a place to thrive, not just survive. Call me if you want help transforming your business.