I'm sorry, I won't have a meeting.

We rarely do meetings at Cliniko. Founder, Joel Friedlaender, explains why.

Joel Friedlaender·

Cliniko founder Joel Friedlaender with his daughters

As Cliniko gets more popular and our business grows, so does the number of times per week people ask to meet with me. I think it’s a great idea to discuss how Cliniko and other businesses can work together to provide extra value to our customers, or potentially gain new ones. I just don’t think a meeting is the way to do that.

If I have a meeting, especially one that someone else has organised, they’ll come to that meeting with ideas they’ve been toying with for a while, and all set for a specific discussion. I’ll turn up blindly and give whatever thoughts come to me at the time. Hopefully I've had a good sleep the night before and am in a good space for creativity and logic. Also you’ll only get my thoughts.

If you email me the details. I can ponder them at a time when I’m in a good space to do so. I can think it through before responding. I can chat to others in the team before responding, so you can get the benefit of the best minds we have here.

Also, and here’s something I’m really keen on, we can be efficient… for both of us. If we have an in person meeting to discuss something that takes 5 minutes to talk about, we won’t just meet for 5 minutes. There’s too much effort involved in organising and travelling to do it for just 5 minutes. So instead we’ll spend some time with useless small talk to get started, then we’ll get into the important stuff, then we’ll finish with some more useless small talk to pad it out. We might spend up to 90 minutes instead of 5. Also, you’ve probably come to visit, so that’s maybe 2 hours or more in travel time for you.

I just don’t see the point. I think we get a better outcome via email, and it saves a lot of time. I have a wife, and two daughters (a two-year-old and a six-year-old) and I like to spend as much time as possible with them. When I’m done with my work, that’s where I spend it. If you take an extra 90 minutes of my time, that’s 90 minutes less with my family. I hope you’ll understand, but I’d rather spend my time with them.

Cliniko founders Joel and Liora with their daughters

Author information

Joel Friedlaender is the founder of Cliniko. He writes about productivity, team-work, and how we do things differently. Follow him on Twitter at @jfriedlaender.

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