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A Meter for Meetings

How to calculate the cost of wasted time.

If time is money, then wasted time is wasted money, and the wasted time of many people is a pile of money indeed.

At least that’s the theory behind Meeting Miser, a free Web software tool from PayScale Inc. that gauges the cost of meetings in real-time based on the salaries of everyone attending. Enter the job title and location of each attendee, click the start button, and the meter starts ticking, putting a dollar amount on how much is wasted in meeting-happy Corporate America.

Consultants might argue that this software’s value lies in its ability to sensitize people to the value of co-workers’ time, thus encouraging them to be prompt and adequately prepared. Others might kvetch that Meeting Miser is miserly indeed, failing to capture the soft-dollar value of a corporate bonding experience, or the return on investment of a brainstorming session that generates a $1 billion product.

But will anyone say a kind word for what surely must be Meeting Miser’s real utility: making a case for skipping meetings altogether? What other software product gives you such a valuable reason to opt out even as it allows you to impress others with your cost-consciousness? For more, visit www.payscale.com/meeting-miser.

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