For example, say you send this email: “I would like to come by sometime to talk to you about the attached report. Will you be in your office tomorrow at 3?”
The person who receives that email might think that you are making an appointment for tomorrow at 3.
You might think that you are just checking to see if they will be around in case you happen to get time to stop by.
Make sure that you 1) are being clear about whether or not you are scheduling a meeting and 2) follow-up by going to the meeting.
Even if the person was going to be around at 3 either way, they probably plan to use their work time differently when they think someone is coming than not.
Don’t wait until 2:55 on the day of the “meeting,” then send another email that says “did you have time to look over that report? I don’t know if I should come by or not.” You already made an appointment! By 2:55 you are simply a no-show.
Also be prepared to spend at least as much time on any task as you expect the person your are meeting with to spend on it.
In the example from above, if you send that email asking someone to go over a report for you, expect to get to the meeting and wait for the person to examine the report once you get there (unless there is some benefit to that person–then you might expect them to devote their own time to looking at the report before you arrive).
If your expectations is that others will do work for you on their own time so you can just swing by and grab it without spending any time on it, you might seem:
- like you’re not a team player
- like you lack basic professional skills, such as scheduling a meeting and then following through by attending.