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  • Writer's pictureJeff Matthews

Meetings about Meetings?

For particularly crucial meetings, Intel has a special team of six full-time facilitators who guide participants through intensive sessions in a 5,000-square-foot building in Oregon.—Wall Street Journal So this is what it’s come to at one of America’s great companies: meetings to get ready for meetings?

The facilitators can tap a database of techniques ranging from good icebreakers, to how to evaluate competitive threats.

“Good icebreakers?” What—like, “Business is so bad at Intel…”?

I mean no disrespect here: I’m writing these words on a computer powered by a microprocessor made by Intel (at least I think it’s Intel—although given the recent market share losses to AMD, who knows), and my life has benefited immensely from the computer revolution.

But a 5,000 square-foot building to get ready for meetings?

And they can draw on an armory of tailor-made equipment, including hand-held voting pads for quick, anonymous polling of the meeting members, rolling 6-foot-by-6-foot white boards that can double as space dividers and a 42-foot-long white board. I admit, I’m not a big Meeting Guy—maybe because the smartest guy I ever worked for had his staff meetings right in his office, at his desk.

And since he worked at a specially-made stand-up desk, we all stood while we talked. No coffee, no doughnuts, no icebreakers or 42-foot white boards or hand-held voting pads. We talked about whatever we had to talk about and then left.

Of course, we weren’t running a huge multinational manufacturing enterprise. Still, after reading today’s Journal, it makes me wonder: I always thought the guy who started Dilbert worked at the phone company, not Intel…

Jeff Matthews I Am Not Making This Up

© 2005 Jeff Matthews

The content contained in this blog represents the opinions of Mr. Matthews. Mr. Matthews also acts as an advisor and clients advised by Mr. Matthews may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog based upon Mr. Matthews’ recommendations.

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