Oh, Alanna, I so with you on this one.
Maybe that’s why I sometimes come across as impatient in meetings. If I go to a meeting, I go to report on what I’ve done and am planning to do, and talk through concrete next steps with others involved. I have a low tolerance for bs-ing and believe that attending meetings for the sake of attending them is only excusable for starving DC interns who need to mooch off the bagels and donuts.
That said, I think meetings should also serve the purpose of inciting critical debate over projects and policies, the kind of debate that can really only take place with humans talking together in a room. During a recent meeting, I questioned the wisdom of the endeavour under discussion. My colleagues were a bit taken aback. I supported the general idea, but also wanted everyone to think hard about possible negative implications and criticisms, and prepare accordingly.
And with that, I have to prepare for a meeting. : D