What time is “on time” for a meeting?

Ms Manners,


If you have an appointment at someone’s office when should you arrive?


Personally I find it quite distracting if someone arrives for a meeting 10 or minutes early.

I plan my day around a number of appointments and often only have a short amount of time between them.


As a result I like to utilise the time before the meeting to review any relevant information and get my mindset correct for that meeting. When they come earlier it throws me off.


I fear it is too rude to have them wait for the designated time and as a result I go see them earlier.


When I go to someone’s office I will arrive just before the allotted time. If I am early I wait in the lobby or car before announcing myself.


Your thoughts?





Great question Nick. Time management is such a crucial part of our work day and it can really get messed up when that spanner gets thrown in (ie a meeting early bird).


The idea is to get to the meeting early enough to show you respect their time and not to have them waiting for you but not too early to put them under pressure.


Generally I would say five minutes is perfect. It’s just early enough for them to say “Ah, they are early” in a pleasant tone.


Being 10-15 minutes early may get a response such as “Ah, they are early” but in an unpleasant and annoyed tone.


They’re the same words but can have a very different start to your meeting.


It is going to be a great start to your business relationship if you are already respecting your association and their time.


Enjoy your new confidence and the game of etiquette.


Kind Regards,

Ms. Manners


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