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What do you do with found time?

On each of several days recently, I had multiple unrelated last minute cancelations of zoom meetings.

In one day I had three such cancelations. In each case less than ten minutes before the meeting for reasons that were known the day before. In one case was more ten minutes after the meeting was supposed to have started.

I am not asking how we can teach such people to be considerate. I won’t even do something subtle like tagging them on this post.

Instead, I am asking what people do with the windfall of time when this happens.

Do you just pick up the next chunk of work?

Do you try specifically to do something related to the meeting that didn’t happen?

Do you declare it mini-vacation?

Do complain and gossip about it?

Does the time get lost on social media?

Or do you write a blog article?

Inquiring minds want to know, starting with mine.

Today’s gratitude and baby animal picture goes out to people who properly give advanced notice about changes of plan.

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  1. Hello. So, I USED to do all the bad things on that list. And then I learnt better.

    Most times nowadays I might do any of or a combination depending on where my schedule is.

    For the most part though I start with writing a missive to the missing party with a summary of at least my half of the conversation. Then the ‘meeting’ can at least happen in a more flexible manner. I will also include an invitation to reschedule if it’s that sort of relationship or remind them of our next scheduled one if not.

    Then, depending on when in the day that was supposed to be, I might take an early lunch/quick break before moving onto other work which might be anything including writing a blog.

    I do agree that when you have set your mind to one event + it falls through last minute (whatever that might be) it can definitely leave one kind of swimming for what to replace that with. Normally for work things a walk or step away from it for a moment is enough to switch gears + move onto whatever next. But yes, it can be disorientating.

    Like you, I always appreciate notification prior of a cancellation. I am pretty easy going + recognise that other things happen + try not to take it personally. Repeat offenders mind, and I have to ask if they are really that into whatever it was we are supposed to be doing together…

Written by Russell Brand

Russell has started three successful companies, one of which helped agencies of the federal government become very early adopters of open source software, long before that term was coined. His first project saved The American taxpayer 250 million dollars. In his work within federal agency, he was often called, “the arbiter of truth,” facilitating historically hostile groups and factions to effectively work together towards common goals


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