Congratulations! You have been randomly selected to complete a survey on Job Satisfaction. The following questions have been expertly crafted by a team of professionals and by “team of professionals,” I mean “one person who decided that creating a survey on Job Satisfaction would be a great use of valuable work time to avoid doing anything that resembles real work.”
Please read the following questions carefully then choose the answer that best relates to your current job situation.
1. How would you describe your overall productivity at work?
a. Very productive
b. Somewhat productive
c. Just passing the time until the season premiere of “LOST”
2. Of the following, which describes your general state of mind at work?
a. Busy but happy
b. Busy and stressed
c. One step away from strangling your co-workers with the printer cable
3. On Friday afternoons, you feel:
a. Satisfied with what you accomplished during the week
b. Confident knowing you put forth 100% effort into each and every project
c. An overwhelming sense of dread knowing that, in 48 hours, you’ll return to the living hell that is your job
Let’s see how you did!
If you answered A to any of the questions, you lied.
If you answered B, see A.
If you answered C, you hate your job.
Then again, if you even bothered to answer the questions at all, you hate your job so much that you’ll gladly do anything to pass the time even if it means answering a survey or watching the video on YouTube where a guy, who just mixed Mentos and Diet Coke, gets smashed in the jewels with a Nerf missile.
The good news, Job Hater, is that you are not alone. According to a study that I just made up, 90% of people hate their jobs. I’m sure there are many reasons for this, such as bad bosses, hostile work environment, a paycheck that’s worth only slightly more than the paper it’s printed on, and others. However, for today’s discussion, let’s just focus on one area: meetings.
Meetings are like the Willy Wonka factory of the work world—people go in, but they don’t come out. Unless of course you’re a little boy with half a dozen grandparents, who are all 150 years old, carrying God knows how many diseases, and sleeping together in a small dingy bed whose sheets haven’t been changed since, well, never. If that’s the case, you’ll escape the factory eventually, but not before a lunatic with crazed eyes and a bow tie, who earlier caught you stealing Fizzy Lifting Drinks, explodes into a blind rage that, medically speaking, scares the bejeezus out of you. All in all, the whole ordeal will seem most annoying and time consuming. Just like meetings!
I figure that on any given day, I spend about three hours in meetings. “But Rob,” you ask. “Surely these meetings are productive!” [NOTE: That loud crashing sound was me falling off the chair laughing. That, or you just popped a gasket, in which case you should seek immediate medical attention and also find out what a gasket is.]
Really, “meeting productivity” depends on your personal criteria. For me, if I do a little doodling and write down my grocery list, I’m happy. Others, like the people I work with, expect—no, DEMAND— more from their meetings. They march into each and every meeting striving to attain the ultimate in meeting productivity…The Follow-up Meeting!
BOSS 1: Great meeting, Fred!
BOSS 2: Did we decide on anything?
BOSS 1. Not a thing. I better schedule a follow-up meeting.
BOSS 2: I’ll bring the pastries!
Funny enough, we are not the first to suffer from pointless meetings. According to a leading paleonscientologist, this plight goes as far back as the days of King Tut where, in the Great Pyramid, detailed hieroglyphics depict a man with grey hair, a banjo, and a fake arrow through this head saying, “You want another meeting? Well, excuuuuuuse me!”
So you see, meetings have been around a long time. And as long as there’s been meetings, there’s been the Meeting Weasel. You know who I mean. The dweeb that always sits next to the boss (ensuring optimal butt kissing) and loves making long-winded comments that, in accordance with the Meeting Weasel Code, always come at the most inconvenient of times, namely just as you’re dozing off or right before lunch. You may also remember Meeting Weasel from his other appearances in your life, such as The Guy Sitting Next To You On The Plane Who Won’t Shut Up and The Guy In Your High School Class Who Reminds The Teacher To Collect Homework.
Now in writing this piece, it’s become clear to me that there are still many important meeting-related issues to address. These matters are integral, thought-provoking, and (according to nine out of 10 dentists) critical in the fight against plaque. Tell you what, why don’t we schedule a follow-up article to discuss?
You bring the pastries.