In my book, if you show up to a sales meeting at the agreed time, you’re showing up late.
It’s for good reason that Old Taskmaster’s watch is set five minutes ahead of time. For that matter, every clock in Taskmaster Towers has been set to run five minutes fast – even the timer on the microwave.
There really is nothing more infuriating for punctual people than for an agreed time for a meeting to come and pass, only to receive a panicked phone call saying “Sorry I’m running late, I’m stuck in a traffic jam”. What a cop out.
The roads were regularly congested for years before they even stepped into their car. In fact, unless they drive a vintage Vauxhall from 1953, the traffic jam may well have been there even before their car was built. And no one has ever accused Australia’s public transport systems of being punctual.
Of course, the flipside for punctual people is that we’re often the annoying ones who turn up to a meeting 10 minutes early, only to find out there’s nothing to read in the office reception except for a pile of yellowing back issues of New Idea from 1987.
These otherwise wasted moments are also the perfect opportunity to do something at least somewhat productive, like read a good business biography. Let’s face it, a good business biography is more likely to keep your sanity intact than the “latest” 20-year-old dirt on Debbie Gibson, Phil Collins and Cyndi Lauper.
The added bonus to fitting in some somewhat-productive business reading is that you look busy. This, in turn, makes it easy for you to fob off people who do annoying things. Annoying things like showing up late for meetings.
So get yourself a decent eBook reader or tablet computer – it doesn’t have to be an iPad, a black and white Kindle will do – and load it up with at least half a dozen business books you can read when you have some down time.
Get it done – today!