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What’s the Worst Late for Meeting Excuse You’ve Heard?

Do your co-workers offer crazy excuses for being late to your virtual meetings? They may be amusing, and in our increasingly flexible work world, even permissible, but if you really want better meetings, you need a solution for those latecomers and their outrageous excuses.

Excuses for Tardiness at Work Reach Bizarre New Levels

Employees drum up some pretty ridiculous excuses for being late once they’ve exhausted traffic, oversleeping and dilemmas with the kids.

CareerBuilder’s 2014 survey and earlier 2012 survey revealed that some employees go to great lengths to talk their way out of being late, claiming:

  • Their cat got stuck in the toilet or had the hiccups.
  • They woke up two blocks away from their home on a front lawn.
  • A nightmare scared them out of showing up on time.
  • Fashion emergencies like a stuck hairbrush or confusing superglue for contact lens solution.
  • Rain from a hole in the roof ruined their alarm clock.
  • They forgot their company had a new location.

And some employees in both surveys actually felt entitled to tardiness, explaining they:

  • Finished a TV show.
  • Made a grocery run to eat their morning bowl of cereal.
  • Assumed Halloween was a company-wide holiday.
  • Interviewed at another company.
  • Had no intention of working before 9 a.m.
  • Thought the commute counted as time at work.

The modern worker has even more excuses when it comes to tardiness at work. With work-life integration trending, some experts argue that the very concept of tardiness is facing extinction. Now, employees can simply excuse themselves from being on time since they’ve already checked their email at breakfast and will finish up their projects after work hours.

Why Late Excuses Won’t Work for Virtual Meetings

However, when it comes to meetings, punctuality will never go out of style. That’s because there are real, measurable costs to late starts.

By definition, meetings require instant, simultaneous group collaboration in order to produce productivity and problem-solving. You may be able to go back and check the recap in your inbox, but you’d still miss out on the point of those virtual meetings.

And the costs of late starts is probably greater than you think. Each employee and their time in a meeting is a company resource with a monetary value. So you’re not only wasting your time (and damaging your reputation at work) but also the time and resources of the entire group, not to mention the cost of lost productivity.

Can Technology Save the Tardy Workforce?

However, the chronically forgetful no longer need a bizarre excuse because virtual meeting solutions like iMeet® let you access your meeting anywhere from any device. Accompanying conferencing apps offer calendar alerts and push notifications, and the intuitive features leave no room for excuses from latecomers.

With the best tech tools, you too can overcome the perils of key-stealing foxes and highway zebras.

But, even though smarter technology arms us with calendars and notifications, being on time is still up to the user. We’ll always need the face-to-face collaboration of in-person meetings to share ideas, resolve conflicts and reach new levels of innovation, and it’s up to us to show up on time for it all.

What’s the worst late for meeting excuse you’ve heard? Share yours with @PGi on Twitter, or leave a reply below.

Image Source: Albumarium

About Ashley Speagle

Ashley Speagle is a Florida-born, Georgia-raised communications specialist, couch movie critic, dream interpreter, acrophobic adventure seeker, outdoors enthusiast, and easy-going introvert.

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