Monday, March 25, 2019

Always On the Go

I had a day this week that defied logic. In the office at 7:00 AM, on the road at 9:30 AM, a conference presentation at 11:30 AM, back on the road at 12:30 PM, a conference call in the car at 1:00 PM, a planning meeting back in the office at 3:00 PM. And all throughout, checking and responding to emails, Tweets, and LinkedIn posts.

I got it all done, and I did it with grace and skill. I'm not trying to toot my own horn; just commenting on how normal things that are actually crazy seem. And craziest of all, while I was driving down the freeway at 75 miles an hour, connecting my hands-free phone to the conference call, I found myself looking forward to the advent of driverless cars so I could be even more productive on days like that.

Funny thing is, I did this all to myself. The conference presentation got booked first. I was invited, I accepted, and I put it on my calendar. It was only 90 minutes away by car, and, at that early date, there was nothing else on my calendar. I could drive down and spend the day there -- or so I thought.

Then the conference call came about. It was the only time and date in the next three weeks that would work for a particular Board member. Sure, no problem. It's after my presentation, so I can easily break away from the conference and take the call. Go ahead and schedule it.

And then the planning meeting. It's part of a new partnership we've been working on, and the day of my presentation was the only one that week that would work for the folks in the other organization. Can you possibly meet with them that day? Ummm, sure. If I leave the conference at 1:00 PM, I should be back in the office and ready to meet at 3:00 PM. Oh, wait. There's that conference call. Well, I guess I can do that hands-free in the car. Let's go ahead and book it.

There was a time when this level of productivity (if that's what you want to call it) would have been unthinkable. No, sorry. I'm giving a presentation at an out-of-town conference that day. We'll have to find other days for both the conference call and the planning meeting. But now, with the communication and transportation tools that we have at our disposal, days in which I give a conference presentation, participate in a conference call, conduct a planning meeting, and spend three hours in the car, are not only possible, they are increasingly the norm.

That's a good thing, right?

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This post first appeared on Eric Lanke's blog, an association executive and author. You can follow him on Twitter @ericlanke or contact him at

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