Mr. Bigwig has been trying to make a point for the past 47 minutes and you still can't quite figure out what he's trying to say. Much like Driving Miss Daisy, the plot is taking 25 years to unfold. This meeting is going nowhere fast!

Being the junior staffer that you are, you're in no position to cut Mr. Bigwig short. Sometimes people just like to be center stage and, unfortunately, you've been cast in the role of fascinated audience.

Normally, the best thing to do when faced with an unproductive meeting is to excuse yourself. However, there are times when this is impossible (like when Mr. Bigwig is your CEO).

Here are some do's and don'ts to get you through the next hour should you find yourself in this situation:

Do
Nod in agreement every few minutes. This will give the impression that you're mulling over something he's said.
Pull out a notebook and a pen and try to get some work done – just make sure to look up every few minutes so that it looks like you're taking notes
Try to keep your mind occupied so that you don't nod off. Try counting umm's or the's – anything to make it look like you're listening.
Mentally plan your grocery list
After the meeting, send Mr. Bigwig a link to EffectiveMeetings.com. Maybe he'll learn something!

Don't
Don't try to make the meeting more interesting by joking or getting off topic – you'll only make the pain last longer
Don't tap your pencil on the table, cross and uncross your legs or show any other sign of impatience. It's unlikely that the incessant nattering will cease and you'll only serve to annoy fellow sufferers.
Don't let your eyes completely glaze over. If you do, Mr.Bigwig will sense that you aren't paying attention and, just like your fifth grade teacher, ask you a question pertaining to what he's discussing.

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