I get to see a lot of meeting behavior. A few rules I use for meetings:
- End the meeting at 5 minutes before the hour. Most people have another meeting starting on the hour, and this gives them a shot at transportation and bio-break time.
- Ask people to turn off phones, laptops, etc directly. If I’m teaching a workshop, I cannot know if the person doing email or texting is making the right decision. I don’t bother to ask. I have asked people to move out of the way if their equipment is in the way of the people working on the simulations. If you are in a meeting and someone else’s behavior is bugging you, talk to that person directly.
- Keep a parking lot of issues to get back to, and get back to them.
- Track ongoing action items. Especially if you’re dealing with managers who have too many context switches to enumerate, make it easy for them to see all their action items in one place.
I have a few other rants on other workplace etiquette, such as cell phone conversations in the bathroom (Please, put the phone down. Shut it. Don’t forget to wash your hands when you’re done. Ugh).
Many of my rules arise from the idea that just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.