This is part of my Series on Entrepreneurial Culture.
Like most entrepreneurs I know I am big on keeping things moving and dislike long, drawn-out meetings. For me, the best pitches and/or meetings are short and to the point- sort of like a hurry-up offense in football.
The worst kind of meetings for me are where everyone goes around in a circle and gives their background for 40 minutes. We’ve all been in these I’m sure. No one gets carried-out on a stretcher necessarily but I'm sure there is some cumulative psychological damage building up for some. This format may actually be ok for groups of 2-3 people, but beyond that it gets incredibly unwieldy and time inevitably runs out before we can get to the business at hand.
Another strange meeting experience is the sort where almost everyone around the table is focused on their respective laptops for the duration. Evidently, this has now led to the phenomenon of "topless meetings", aka no laptops allowed: http://bit.ly/I2pcm
I love it when after folks exchange initial greetings we all quickly get down to the business at hand. Interestingly, we'll often end up having time left over to get to know each other better.