How to Get a Meeting Back on Track
There is a lot of folklore about Microsoft (MSFT), but I hope this urban legend is true: They say that at Microsoft, at least in certain circles, you don't have to sit through boring meetings. You have to give the presenter 10 minutes. After that, you are free to go if you're bored or if the meeting isn't relevant to your work. Can you imagine how empowering it would be to stand up, smile, and waft out of the room when a meeting goes wrong? If all of us non-Microsofties had that much leeway (and weren't worried about looking bad, making someone else look bad, or hurting our teammates' feelings), we'd be out the door 10 minutes and 30 seconds after half our weekly meetings had begun.
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