Parkinson’s Law in Meetings

Some years ago a British bureaucrat, C. Northcote Parkinson, wrote a little book called Parkinson’s Law: The Pursuit of Progress. This book has had a profound influence on millions of people over the decades.

Parkinson’s Law says that “work expands to fill the time available for its completion.” So, if you have eight hours to complete a list of tasks, you will take the full eight hours to complete the tasks and will still be rushing at the end of the day.

What Parkinson noted, in studying the British civil service, was that no matter how many people were hired and how large the departments became, everyone was busy all day long, even if very little was actually being accomplished. This is one of the great ...

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