HUFFINGTON POST
09/11/2014 12:04 pm ET Updated Sep 11, 2014

The Creative Benefits Of Boredom

Bernd Opitz via Getty Images

In a past life, I used to be required to participate in quarterly sales meetings. These meetings followed a typical format: fly everyone in the company to an amazing destination, then lock them inside a hotel ballroom for 10 hours a day and force them to listen to speeches from sales leadership, as well as marketing, research, and legal departments (usually with a motivational speaker to close it all out). Try as they might, these meetings were boring. The real shame was that they were intended to rally troops and get the sales organization excited about new initiatives, as well as inspire them to think up new and better ways to increase sales in the field. The only saving grace: the late-night dinners. After 10 hours of being talked at, my colleagues and I would escape the hotel, find a local restaurant and talk to each other. Despite our best efforts, these dinner conversations were always about work –- and good thing too. These chats were filled with new ideas for dealing with problem clients or increasing sales of new products. Late-night dinners became the source of the new and exciting our meetings were supposed to elicit.

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