Thursday, October 15, 2009

There are no winners - only survivors

Everybody has certain times at work when you just have to grin and bear it, right? There are certain days (of the week, of the month, each year) when you just know it's going to be rough - and you've got to tough it out.

Today was one of those days.

The annual budget planning meeting started today at 4 pm. And it ran until a little after 9 pm. So (that's right, you guessed it) everybody worked nearly a full day - and then had to sit through a five-hour meeting. Now, a five-hour meeting would be difficult enough if you were fresh - but after working all day, the prospect of sitting in a meeting for five hours is more than most people can bear.

I'd like to say, before going any further, that: I'm not sure there is necessarily a better way to handle the thing. It's easy enough for me to say that they should start the meeting in the morning, meet until we get through the entire agenda, and then have everyone go back to their normal duties for whatever time remains. But the truth is: we'd probably all get pulled in a million different directions during the course of the meeting if it were taking place during "normal business hours" - so it's not clear that starting earlier would be much of an improvement.

At least, by meeting into the night, there's a kind of natural process which eventually brings the meeting to a close. That is, when everyone is too punchy to go on, you know the meeting is over.

In such an undertaking, there are no winners...only survivors. And I survived - for another year. Here's hoping you make it over the next hurdle, wherever it is that you toil.

Take care.


Middle Aged Woman said...

I hope they at least fed you something good.

~The South Dakota Cowgirl~ said...

Reading this reminds me why I am glad that the plains of South Dakota are my office. Where the only person I have to meet with is Zach, cows and some horses. And while Zach may be a smart ass, the cows and horses, well they don't talk back!

Jess said...

You got FOOD!?! Well, that pretty much rocks. I agree though...ew on meetings. Ew on meetings that go into the night. Ew on five hour meetings in general.

Jim Styro said...

MAW: Yeah, Mexican. That is, Mexican cuisine; they did not butcher people of Mexican descent and prepare them for our evening meal.
If that's what you were thinking.

SDC: But I've heard the plains of South Dakota can get pretty chilly this time of year. Admittedly, an office environment isn't for everyone - but I don't normally mind working indoors.

Jess: I, too, am a BIG fan of food. Particularly, Mexican food. They didn't offer margaritas though. I suppose introducing alcohol into a 5-hour business meeting would be risky, of course. But I probably would have been willing to take the risk.