S: Since you got us here, maybe you ought to take charge of this meeting.
J: Ok, so I took the liberty of putting together a little agenda. I sent an email to everybody. Did everybody get a copy?
C: Yeah I did. And this looks like a massive project. As you know IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m going to be seguing into the design department. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m only going to be here for another 3 to 4 weeks. So whatever is delegated to me, I think itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s important that you also understand the limitations that I have. If I am going to be doing some of this stuff, whoever is going to take over my position, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m probably going to need extra help, so you guys are probably going to be hung out to dry. So thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s all I wanted to start out with this meeting telling you guys.
J: Well I think 3 or 4 weeks is enough time. I think that the reason you are moving to the design department is because you have a lot of energy and a lot of dedication and that is why you have been assigned to this team. At least thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s what I have been told. I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going to be a problem. We have high expectations.
R: Yeah my mother in law is coming into town so she is moving in. So I got to like, you know Cheng you are the best at what you do. I think that I am definitely going to need a lot of help here. I mean, I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t work overtime. That right off the bat and during lunch I have a couple of things I have to take care of to accommodate for my mother in law moving in.
J: Got it! You got complaints too? You got problems too?
R: ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not a complaint Joe.
S: I have no complaints.
J: We all have lots of work to do. We have been assigned to do this. I went ahead and took the liberty of putting together an agenda, I would like to review it and we can all talk about these things because letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s understand what we are going to do. There are a number of tasks here and we are going to talk about what they are, we are going to talk about the legitimacy of going through there, we are going to talk about how to divvy them up, and how we are going to get it done. We all have mother in laws, we are all moving on. We only have x amount of time to be able to get the work done. Ok? So can we just stick to the focus and get through these things?
R: Go for it.
J: Ok. The first issue is assessing the current hardware and software in all of the 6 offices. For example, if 4 out of the 6 offices use something, I think that is the direction we have to lean.
R: Joe, I think we know what things are, and I think we need to move this meeting on a little quicker.
J: Ok, what do you suggest we do?
R: Well just go through them a little faster because I have to make a couple of phone calls.
J: I appreciate your energy towards moving on to other things but this also deserves some attention. Alright, evaluate the current market options. Hardware and software based solutions. So we have to understand whatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s out there. We have to understand first of all what is being used by the different offices here, and also what is available. Ok, does everyone agree with that?
All: Uh huh.
J: Ok wonderful. Then examine the learning curve for the time lost for the most potential solutions. Meaning that if we are going to change something within the different offices we have to understand what it is going to take, whatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the learning curve, what are the different resources that we are actually going to have to put toward teaching people to be able to use that software?
S: You know that has been tried before?
J: No I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t know that.
S: Yeah well I mean youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re new. So how could you know? I mean it has been tried many times before. I would love to have it done differently, more efficiently than last time because I cannot tell you how many times they have tried to streamline. It just goes down the stream.
J: Well I think that again this project has been hanging out there and a number of people have tried it so the 4 of us are going to get together and figure out how to do it, how to do it right this time.
R: Right on Joe.
J: Right? Ok, great we are having fun guys.
R: How many do we have left to go through?
J: We have one left.
R: Oh ok. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s good.
J: One left ok? So we have to evaluate the workload of the 6 different offices and therefore we need to figure out how we are actually going to implement that software. So have I left something off the list?
S: No, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s very, very efficient. I meanÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
J: Rosa, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sorry, do you think anything has been left off that you would like to add?
R: No, no. I think you have covered it and then some.
C: No, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s crystal clear for me.
J: Ok, so we have got the stuff on the list done. So I guess the first question would be does anybody volunteer to take on any of these items?
C: Well there is just one thing that I am thinking of. Just the timeline. I just, you know, when we do do this, I just want to raise a question of concern. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m thinking of how heavy are the workload and responsibilities that I am going to have to take becauseÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
S: Nobody works faster in this office than you do.
R: Yeah Cheng.
C: I know but when I segway into the design department, who wants to pick up where I left off?
S: You have been transferring to that department for a long time; you have the time to do something like this.
J: Simon, sorry to interrupt. But you know what, first letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s understand the tasks at hand, and then we can figure out how long itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going to take. LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not worry about it just yet.
S: That makes sense.
J: Because you know what, we might find something that you just love to do. Ok, of these items. There might be something fantastic. So letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not worry.
R: I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t commit too much of my time. I mean I am having a lot of trouble with Jose.
J: Ok, I understand that so letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just try to break it down even simpler alright?
C: The thing that IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m most interested in is putting the calls out to the other field offices and we can have those reports come back into me and we can start developing those into a streamline report.
J: Fantastic so that is basically item B on the list. Rosa, is there anything on the list that you would be interested in doing?
R: IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m embarrassed to say but I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t download the list from the email.
J: Just so, in generalÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
R: Can I look at the list please? Just there is so much going on in my life now Joe.
J: Well let me make it simple for you.
R: Ok please.
J: WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re just going to assess the current hardware and software. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s something that we can even just send out a memo to the current employees and ask you know, whatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s working and what isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t working.
S: YouÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re going to get an opinion from every employee? Are you kidding?
J: Well I think we can send out an email that says which software you use most, which is useful and which isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t.
S: You know what you are going to get back? Solitaire.
R: Is that what you teach them?
S: I walk around I see them, you know, half the people sitting around talking to their mother in laws.
C: ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s my opinion that I think that Rosa is probably the best person for the account management and cost assessment.
S: Yeah I agree with that. Yeah absolutely.
C: Because she does cost assessment more than any of us.
R: Great guys.
J: ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s what I was thinking. So right now, Rosa, it might change but right now, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m just going to put your name next to that one.
R: But I am going to be knocking on your desk. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t worry about it.
S: Yeah you can knock on my desk anytime. If IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m not there, just keep knocking.
R: Because you are too busy playing solitaire right?
S: I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play solitaire.
J: So I will tell you what. LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just back up and say for a moment. I will go ahead and assess the current hardware and software used in all 6 offices.
S: I got to get out of here.
J: Hang on, we are almost done Simon.
S: I have to get out of here.
R: Can I just, look before we finishÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
S: No look I have to get out of there. I have another meeting down the hall.
R: But look wait, if I need help you are going to help me right? Because I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do this by myself.
J: So Simon, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll tell you what.
S: Can we do this another time? I got to go; IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m really pressed for time.
J: No problem, I will assign you to a couple of things.
R: Yeah I think itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a good idea that we stop now.
S: WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll talk later.
R: Ok. Oh Joe.
C: Yeah well I know what IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m supposed to do.
J: Coming into this meeting I thought that we had an agenda. This agenda, everybody had a copy of it, they should have had a copy of it, and they should have reviewed it. I showed up to the meeting and realized that only Cheng had a copy of the agenda and Rosa and Simon did not. There is a couple of things that I believe if you go to any meeting: number one, you have to show up, at least we got that; number two you have to show up on time, at least we got that; number three there needs to be an agenda and you have to review the agenda; and number four when you leave the meeting you should understand what the next steps are. Like I said, Rosa and Simon did not even know what the agenda was. They spent more time, most of the people spent more time complaining or talking about what they couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do or why they couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do it, as opposed to focusing on the tasks at hand. In retrospect I think I would have taken the personalities into consideration a little bit more, and therefore would have been a little more proactive and anticipate the situations that may have happened in the meeting. Therefore make it more productive, make it more effective, and definitely make it more efficient because everyone has other things to do. I think how I would have done that is to think through who, in my mind would be appropriate for which tasks ahead of time, and laid it out on the table. And then gotten their reactions and if they wanted to change it, then we could, and if not then we would implement that and move forward. If you work any place, I think that you should be committed and dedicated and passionate about what you do. If you are just having a job, I think that one should consider making pizzas or pumping gas or something rather than working in a professional environment where you have to work in a team and actually produce things and get things done.