7 November 2011

How to succeed in Library Management

Part One of an occasional series

How to get your own way at meetings

1.  Never confess your diary has any spare time, except to attend a meeting that is important to you.

2.  Before the meeting never read minutes or documents.  Do not answer requests for information which might be helpful to the committee.

3.  At the meeting, ask anyone presenting any report/ proposal to summarise it for you.  They will probably miss out half of what is important so you can claim afterwards never to have known about it.

4.  When critical issues are discussed it's best to appear interested but occasionally gaze out of the window as if deep in thought.

5. If producing a document yourself, circulate it at the last possible moment. With luck no one will have read it.  Insist it has the full backing of your boss (you can run this past him/her later saying it has been agreed by the committee).  Tell the committee it is crucial that a decision is made immediately.  Chances are you will have it accepted with little scrutiny.

6. If pressed for a decision, suggest setting up a sub-committee/focus group (this will take several months to set up by which time the issue will no longer be relevant), or explain that you will need to discuss the matter further with your boss/colleagues/someone on long-term sick leave. 

7. If decisions go against you, appear blank at future meetings and ask “Did we agree that, I thought we agreed [what you actually wanted]" and hope no one can remember differently.

8. It's always worth trying to fix the minutes in your favour at the next meeting.

9. If asked to evidence any questionable decisions, respond by giving evidence for decisions which are irrelevant but uncontentious.  

10. If all else fails, resign.

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