05/17/2012 11:24 am ET Updated Jul 17, 2012

The People That Kill Workplace Meetings

When it comes time for a meeting, co-workers can be deadly. Discussions get hijacked. Bad ideas fall like blunt objects. Long-winded colleagues consume all available oxygen, killing good ideas by asphyxiation.

Co-workers wander off topic, send texts, disrupt decision-making or behave in other dysfunctional ways. Even the best leaders can resort to desperate measures to keep the discussion on track: chocolate rewards, Elmo dolls and ice-cold rooms.

Multitasking at meetings is such a given that unless a leader sets a "no devices" rule or schedules "tech breaks," nearly everyone texts or sneaks a peek at email during meetings. And yet, that is nothing compared with real sabotage.

Read more on The Wall Street Journal