I don’t know about you, but at just about the two week mark before a vaca or holiday approaches, it seems like every single colleague comes out of the wood work with immediate attention tasks that, in all reality, could have absolutely been put off. And while everyone deals with holidays differently, some do whatever they can to avoid them and distract themselves from whatever negativity or pain they associate with them, while others tend to look forward to spending time with family they don’t otherwise get to see that often and maybe get a surprise from Santa. Most of all, for me at least, I count down the days to give my loved ones presents that I have literally acquired for the entire year leading up to said holiday. But regardless of our personal vendettas with holidays, there seriously needs to be some sort of guideline when it comes to deciphering what is on the must-do-now list and the I-have-to-prioritize-other-tasks list. And when it comes to spending countless hours in meetings that consume twelve plus hours when a simple call or email or even smoke signal, for that matter, would have sufficed, I do have some tips:
- Limit the time period for each meeting: this is a respectful way to show that this colleague is a priority but not the only one.
- Prep in advance: go the extra mile in anticipation of the meeting so that you can show them something to think about when the meeting ends and so that, in the case that this happens, you won’t be caught off guard.
- Avoid alcohol oriented meal sharing: as tempting as boozy lunches are at the holiday season, don’t do it. 9 times out of 10, they end up in over indulging, telling wayyyyy too much about your personal life, often times things you never wanted to even share, and for some reason, this time of year tends to make many people just a tad over-vulnerable. Stay professional. Wait until the meeting is over. And THEN find the nearest happy hour.