I went to a mandatory meeting at my job last week. It was the first meeting that I have had to go to since starting at this job and I was filled with giddy anticipation. After all, the owners would be there and who doesn’t want to meet the people that they work for? We were told that it would start precisely at 5:30 and last for about 45 minutes. It was essential that we get there on time because it would definitely start at 5:30. So at 5:50, I was a bit grumpy because it was “time to get this ball rollin’.” Why the fuck did I bust my ass to get there on time on my fucking day off if it didn’t even matter?
Due to my prior experience with mandatory meetings at restaurants, I had already decided to not say a word because there are always plenty of others who have more than enough to say. I have also learned that nothing makes a bit of difference anyway. Managers and owners have all these grand ideas that they want implemented and they try to encourage their staff to work as a team and all that crap. But nothing ever changes. “From now on, the schedule will be made two weeks in advance!” Uh huh, sure. “No more cell phone use allowed!” Right, got it. “Give customers the correct order!” Yeah, that’ll happen. Blah blah blah, in one ear and out my ass.
And then the owners speak. Two guys that never bothered to introduce themselves to me. I still don’t know their names, but I know for a fact that they are really really important people. Because they wear suits. They blabbed about how customer service is their number one priority when we all know their priority is making money. It just is. No need to try to hide it, fellas. Own up to it and I might be willing to push a bit harder for you. But for you to sit up there with your big fancy JC Penny suits and try to convince me that the only reason you are in this business is to make customers happy is a big load of crap.
The meeting was supposed to be over at 6:15. At 6:50, when the meeting was over, I put my coat on and left. Next shift at work was exactly the same. Mandatory meetings are a waste of time. We all know it. The people who call the meetings are the only ones who are under the influence that they matter. They don’t. How about you? What are your thoughts on the big time suck known as “the mandatory meeting?”