The positive (?) correlation between consulting success and meeting count

If you saw my post from December 6, I mentioned that I have a scheduling conflict at the time of Jay Clouse’s Friday, December 17 Annual Planning Workshop. In my time zone, the workshop takes place between 7:00 am and 9:00 am, and I have a meeting during part of that time.

Come to think of it, I also have a meeting conflict at that time on Thursday, December 16.

And on Monday, December 20.

And a bunch of other days.

On Monday, December 6, I started a (non-identity) proposal consulting contract that will require a significant number of hours until the proposal is submitted on approximately Tuesday, January 25.

This is by far the biggest consulting contract that I have ever landed. I’d throw a party for myself, but I’m pretty busy. Between this proposal consulting contract, my other continuing consulting work, end of year health care enrollment. and other tasks, I can’t exactly party all the time.

No this, isn’t a selfie. For one, I’ve never owned leather pants. Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14872497

The “significant hours” that I’m spending on this particular proposal are roughly equivalent to the hours that I spent every week as an employee before I started consulting.

Actually, it’s not exactly the same as being an employee. For example, there won’t be a holiday party this month attached to this consulting gig. (Although because of budget cuts, my former employer had stopped the annual holiday parties anyway.)

This proposal contract has one big similarity to my former employee lifestyle.

A ton of meetings.

Now I’ve had meetings for my other consulting gigs, but for most projects there’s only one or two meetings for the entire project.

I’m only a week into this consulting gig, and I’m already averaging three meetings per day.

Not representative of my meetings, which take place online rather than in an oval shaped office. By Series: Reagan White House Photographs, 1/20/1981 – 1/20/1989Collection: White House Photographic Collection, 1/20/1981 – 1/20/1989 – https://catalog.archives.gov/id/12013683, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=92513242

None of these thrice-daily meetings lasts longer than an hour, and I bet that some of you have many more than three meetings per day. But the meeting time does add up.

Luckily I organize a number of these meetings myself, so I can ensure that my meetings never last longer than an hour.

(I don’t like meetings. The best person to arrange a meeting is a person who doesn’t like meetings. Such a person will get the meeting business done as soon as possible, before people fall asleep or run away screaming in agony.)

And the two people who (so far) have arranged the remainder of my meetings for this proposal project feel the same way.

Now I can’t guarantee that all of the meetings for this proposal will be short and sweet, and in fact expect that the meetings between Christmas and New Year’s may be longer than an hour. (Yes, meetings between Christmas and New Year’s. It’s proposal work.)

But at least the meetings keep me out of trouble.

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