A few years ago, I ended up becoming the Convenor of my professional group. Now, this wasn’t because of outrageous ambition or a wild desire for power. Nope: it was more along the lines of “somebody has to do it, and you look like you won’t break too much expensive or important stuff”. My predecessor was wonderful: very organised, professional, and efficient. I think I can say I took that as a challenge not to live up to…I am definitely more of a Chaotic Convenor.
This is how I convene a meeting*:
- Fumble about with the paperwork, and realise I didn’t print out the agenda and previous meetings minutes.
- Sheepishly ask if anyone has spare copies/steal another Committee members copy while they aren’t looking, and protest innocence and surprise when the missing papers are discovered.
- Select which pretty colour of gel ink pen to use.
- Ask what I’m meant to do.
- Start going over the minutes of the previous meeting.
- Ask if that’s what I’m meant to be doing.
- Meander off point in an epic manner at any random point.
- Decide it’s time for a snack.
- Sing along to music seeping in from outside.
- Scribble semi-comprehensible notes everywhere.
- Descend into gossip occasionally.
- Ask whereabouts we were in the agenda, because I lost track.
- Be mildly cheeky to the quieter members of the Committee to provoke them into joining in.
- Eventually discuss all the things we needed to discuss.
- Nominate anyone but myself to do the work needing to be done (I am developing this into a fine art).
But you’ll have to arrange the date.
And can you book the room?
Oh, can you also print out some spare copies of the agenda?
Wait a minute: what day was it again?
* This may, or may not be an entirely accurate account.