Thursday, August 30, 2007

Recording Meetings at Work - Is it Really Worth the Risk?

Here's the scenario: Your boss goes on vacation and you are asked to not only take notes during the daily staff meetings but also record them. What do you do? Do you confidently put the recorder on the table in front of you and act like it's not there? Or, do you hide it in your pocket or put it in the plant in the corner of the room with plans to sneak back in the conference room and recover it?

What would you do?

If it's no secret in the office that you're a "kiss up" and you would do whatever your boss told you to do then what do you really have to worry about? And, if you are used to being ridiculed publically in the office then the decision is easy - proudly put the recorder right in front of you. If questioned all you have to do is confirm what your boss told you to do.

But, what if this is not you? You're relatively new and want to do all you can to impress your boss and show your commitment and dedication to not only him (or her) but to also the company.

Option 1: You sneak in the conference room and place the recorder in the plant in the corner of the conference room - you then press play right before the meeting begins. Once the meeting is over and everyone is back at their desk you quietly sneak back in and get the recorder. But here's the risk - what if you are caught? Then, not only you but also your boss are open to public ridicule.

Option 2: You place the recorder in your pocket to record the meeting. There are two risks here. The first is you being caught with it - not good. The second is that the recorder is so low in your pocket that it doesn't pick up anything.

Option 3: You give everyone a "heads up" before the staff meeting that you've been asked to record the meetings. With this option no one is surprised and hopefully the meeting will run like it usually does with no excitement. The risk? Not as much as Option 1 or 2 - everyone knows what the boss is like and you are perceived more like the "innocent victim"...

Me? I'm going with Option 3...

Dwight, in the below clip, is doomed for a disaster and pays the price for the option he selects...