There is a statistical rumor going around the offices that claims some distractions and interruptions disturb the average office worker every couple of minutes. The vast majority of people find their time simply nubbled away by other co-workers, who just drop in our cubicles or cut our way in the hall asking, “Hey, got a minute?”
An impromptu meeting is a meeting that you didn’t plan or organize in advance. In some situations, you can find yourself in a meeting without even knowing it. However, not all impromptu meetings are wisely invested resources (time, employees, etc.)
Managers, executives, and in charge people learn how to handle this popping up problem on the go when it’s not important and what to do when you find yourself in an impromptu meeting without even knowing that.
How An Impromptu Meeting Should Be Used
Impromptu, as in “surprise!” Typically you are tight on time or have no time to prepare, but you have to wing it. It is the same as an unexpected elevator speech.
However, take a moment to plan. Give yourself a couple of minutes. Think about who you should invite, how much time you will need, what and how you want to achieve it. Do you need to give people some time for questions and your answers after making a statement, announcement, and so on?
One of the best uses of an impromptu meeting is when you need to pull a group of people together at the last moment, presenting a number of challenges or announcing something important.
Handling Impromptu Meetings
Unfortunately, not all got a minute, and at the last minute, meeting situations are necessary and unavoidable, like when it comes to big business tasks and sudden important meetings. Although drop-ins are a valid way of communication, just like phone messages and emails, with the extra benefit of talking face to face, sometimes they are simply a waste of time. When you have the time, they certainly can be useful and help you with your job.
But what to do when these small interruptions wander too far afield or become excessively long, just pure social session? You need to nip them in the bud but in a gentle way. But how to do that?
This is a great illustrative example of how to do it. One young manager politely told a person who daily complained about something: “Look, I really do enjoy working with you every day, but if you are that much unhappy, why don’t you consider finding another job?
Her response immediately opened the employee’s eyes to reality, and he understood what he was doing. Social interaction may be good for a team, but sometimes negativity can greatly influence productivity, and you just can’t afford timewasters when you are on a tight deadline.
Best Practice For Conducting An Impromptu Meeting
Although impromptu meetings give us a headache, and we keep complaining about them, their face-to-face side remains the best of the best way to truly communicate. However, try to stick to the business topic and what’s important. Otherwise, the story can quickly go off the subject and eat away your precious time.
All in all, preparation is the key. Always have something ready to present or a gentle, subtle excuse when people disturb you.