Before Doodle (and its like) when suitable dates and times were being sought for a meeting I used to waste vast amounts of time responding to an inordinate number of emails, or filling in crappy grids in Word, only to find that a date and time still couldn’t be found and we would have to go through the whole slow process again without any assurance that the second round would get us any closer to an actual meeting.
Despite the adminstrative leap forward Doodle offers, personally I have an aversion to this particular scheduling service for two simple reasons:
1. It’s called Doodle
2. The scheduling mechanism is termed a ‘poll’
You see the problem I have is that at the professional, and hopefully productive, meeting I’m trying to arrange there will be no doodling, colouring in, or drawing of rude body parts in the margin of the agenda, and it won’t be like the Smash Hits Poll Winners party. We’re really not going to be voting on Pat Sharp’s hair or who is the sexiest member of Take That.
I think the first meeting scheduling service I used was Meet-o-Matic but that also had a bit of an image problem – sounding a bit too much like an robot dating service for my liking (plus it had a nasty glitch that I can’t recall right now) so I moved on to Meeting Wizard instead, just as free, but with a much er.. less..resonant name. However, I can only use Meeting Wizard when I invite colleagues to a meeting, so obviously a lot of the time I’m reluctantly responding to ‘Doodle Polls’ (Grrrrr) as it does seem to have become the Tesco of the scheduling world. I wonder what percentage of meetings are now arranged via Doodle? I wonder can it beat the meeting equivalent of 1 in every 8 pounds is a Tesco pound?
BTW, for all of those of you on the Cam23 programme who wondered if it had occurred to us that we were effectively asking participants to arrange 90 separate meetings this week. It had. But only at the weekend before Thing 5 was due to be posted and I was enjoying the sun far too much. So, if productivity in Cambridge University libraries hits an all-time low this week you know who to blame…