Productivity Paranoia And The 3X Meeting Clip

Managers’ heads are about to explode, dude.

Ted Bauer

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I believe that graphic above is from a Microsoft report. Since the beginning of COVID, they have authored numerous “future of work” reports, some of which are valid and some of which are BS. You have to remember that Microsoft sells enterprise software, so they try to make you panic about things that enterprise software can supposedly solve. In this instance above, they are saying: “Everyone calls so many meetings! Oh God! So you should sign up for Teams and call less meetings.” Anyone that has ever worked in a big company, or even a mid-sized company, knows that this doesn’t work. When you get new tools, old-school employees ignore them (“I had to email my boss to check Slack…”) and/or everyone feels like “balls are being dropped,” so they call more meetings. Then the elephant in the room is hybrid vs. remote vs. in-person and managers being scared of productivity decline — because, back in 2015, most managers “managed” from a place of “Oh, Amy is in her chair. That’s good.” Now “management” is a little more involved, and most people can’t handle that.

This 3x meeting clip thing is awful, though — although anyone with a brain saw it coming down the pike. Once “management” became more about actual interaction and less about simply monitoring the physical presence of employees, we would invariably have more meetings — because, I mean, how else are you gonna know someone is “green-light” unless you force them to sit on video or in a conference room and talk about things?

The only real “solution” to this moment is better managers. The high-level corporate solution is, of course, “bring more people back to work.” That’s not the real answer, as flexibility is increasingly important to employees in a time…

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Ted Bauer

Mostly write about work, leadership, friendship, masculinity, male infertility, and some other stuff along the way. It's a pleasure to be here.