A few days ago, there was a townhall meeting where I lived. The Board wanted to inform us of stuff.
So I went, planning to spend 2 hours listening to boring details about stuff that doesn’t matter to me, but matters to many people. Sort of like the dolly issue.
Previous board inspired meetings with past boards were replete with interruptions by people who just want to be heard despite having little to say or ask. Some people really like these meetings.
I hate meetings because everyone there seems to feel obligated to say something, and then because they say something, I have to say something to counter my concerns about something, and suddenly everything is derailed.
I held my peace this time. It’s not that I agreed with everything said and had no questions. I have plenty of questions, suggestions, etc, but nobody really asked me.
In fact I’m honestly not as confident as I appeared about some of the things that were said, but there’s not much they could have said to boost my confidence. I know the game, I’ve been on the Board, and when the meeting was done, uninterrupted, with 30 minutes for Q&A, I booked. I was gone.
I was busy thinking about my next writing project anyway. They’d given us facts. I’m not going to backseat drive facts. As I was leaving, someone started off by looking up from their notes – they had taken notes – and they had 3 questions, and I ran. Were they good questions? Maybe. I don’t know. I didn’t want to know.
To me, it was all pretty clear cut. Some people aren’t paying their maintenance fees, including the government. The government’s corporation, HDC, wasn’t giving the concurrent lease that our leases state they would give but they haven’t because of a technicality… stuff that was broken was getting fixed or had been fixed. The newly minted PhD was talking about innovation and technology as if she were Elon Musk as I inwardly cringed, having disagreed with just about every step that they had taken and said so only to have my name added to a rubber stamp.
But it’s community, and there was talk of a community barbecue. That will be much more interesting.
The reality is that this all could have been done by email. In fact, if people have been reading their email, it was already done. There was nothing new, just tentative promises tossed out with long disclaimers. People say they want updates but what they really want is progress, and nothing ever happens fast enough.
Then you have the people who string the cliches together in staccato fashion but actually only demonstrate confidence. “We have some very intelligent people on the board” also sounds like, “You should trust us, we’re smarter than you” which also sounds like, “Listen up, dummies!”
Meetings. One size fits none. It’s all cliche.