avoiding 'nepali time:' get meetings started on time

One thing we Nepalese are really good at is ‘being late.’ How many times have you attended a corporate event that has started on time? Probably none. How many times have you waited for someone to arrive for a meeting to start on time? Probably a lot of times. To conclude, we are all used to what is called ‘Nepali time.’

Here I go with the cliché that can’t be truer, “time is money!” And if you’re wasting your time on waiting then you’re losing money! Over 500 meetings in the past two years and I finally seem to have figured out how to save time on meetings. This is what I’ve learnt:

1. Use odd timings: We seem to have a preconception with time ending on “30” and “00” that it is flexible. Fo0r example, 11:00 usually means 11:30; 1:30 usually means 2:00. How about you say, “Let’s meet at 11:20” This means you expect the other person to arrive not later than 11:30 and not before 11:10. It is 11:20 strict. This way you don’t sound rude; neither will you have to wait half an hour or an hour for the meeting to start. I’ve used this many times and it has worked to my advantage.

2. Give them a time window: It is good to always let your clients know about the meetings you’re going to have afterwards. For example, “Yes! We can meet at 11:00 but I’ve another meeting at 11:30.” This way not only the meeting will start on time, it will end on time as well.

3. Rephrase your reminder text/email: Yes! It is important to send a reminder text or email about the meeting but how it is said is more important. For example, “This is to remind you that we have a meeting today,” V/S “Are we on time for today’s meeting?” Keywords here are “on time.” You’re now suggesting the other person to be on time and yet again without being rude.

If you’re aggravated with having delayed meetings, follow these 3 easy steps. Let me know if this works for you. amun.thapa@gmail.com.

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