Coffee, Coffee, Coffee.

Today was the first day of our join.me Coffee Carts, and I was in San Francisco with our team passing out free coffee, flyers and good cheer to passerbys (the good cheer part was a little tough at 6:30 AM, but we made it work.)

You can check out more photos on our Facebook page.

         

join.me: Coming Soon To a City Near You

Okay, you know that join.me is already in a city near you because you can access join.me from anywhere with an Internet connection – but what you don’t know is that we are, literally, coming to a city near you.

Check out the schedule below. We’ll be giving away free hot beverages near each of these locations. Free coffee or hot chocolate on your way to work. Why? Because we want to show you how awesome, easy and simple join.me is – and we know you can’t fully appreciate it until you’ve had your daily dose of caffeine or sugar.

Week 1 (from 7 – 10am, featuring coffee)

Boston: 11/30: South Station; 12/1: Government Center; 12/2: Harvard Square Station

San Francisco: 11/30: Montgomery Station; 12/1: Powell Station; 12/2:  Civic Center Station

Washington DC: 11/30: Union Station; 12/1: Metro Center; 12/2: 14th St. McPherson Sq Metro Station;

New York City: 11/30:  Union Square Park; 12/1: Port Authority; 12/2: Grand Central Station

Week 2 (from 8-11am, featuring hot chocolate)

Boston: 12/14: Back Bay Station; 12/15: North Station; 12/16: Financial District

San Francisco: 12/14: Fremont Station; 12/15: Millbrae Station; 12/16:  Embarcadero

Washington DC: 12/14: Smithsonian Station; 12/15: DuPont Circle; 12/16: Woodley Park Station

New York City: 12/14:  World Financial Center; 12/15: Penn Station; 12/16: Rockefeller Plaza, Central Park & Columbus Circle

And in the UK…

London: 12/6: Waterloo; 12/7: Liverpool Street; 12/9: Victoria;  12/13: Paddington;  12/15: London Bridge

Visit us at these carts for a hot beverage, news about join.me and your chance to enter and win some swag. I mean, you didn’t think all we were giving you was drinks, did you?

Let us know you’ll be there in the comments.

         

Collabragicians: Martin Strazynski

Martin (@muffnman on Twitter) is someone who is always sharing his love for LogMeIn and, of course, join.me. So naturally I pinged him for a Skype interview so I could share with all of you how others like Martin are using join.me.

Are you a frequent join.me user with a story to tell? Let me know at maggie@join.me and let’s talk.

         

Brainstorm on Meeticus – The God of Meetings

Remember Meeticus? You know, the God of Conferences that @MeetingBoy created during our last brainstorm? Well, it’s time to bring him back and figure out exactly what he’s all about.

Tomorrow at 2 PM EST, @MeetingBoy will be holding a join.me brainstorm at https://join.me/meetingboy to discuss Meeticus and all things related to this (fictional but possible) Greek God.

Come prepared by thinking about these questions:

1.  What are the characteristics of Meeticus?

2.  What’s his story?  What’s his background?

3.  Where do you see him fitting in to every day life?

4. What ritual sacrifices would he require?

5. How does he fit in with other gods? Will he be the bore they all avoid?

6. How does he appear to his followers? A burning printer?

What are we missing? Leave a note in the comments below.

         

Five Meetings To Avoid – @MeetingBoy

Oh, @MeetingBoy. What an expert. After his join.me session, we were discussing one of the questions that came up: Have you ever been to a good meetings? What’s that like? It got us talking about the topic of meetings that should be banned from the office (and that’s a nice way of putting it. I am a lady, after all). Here’s his top five meetings to avoid – if you can help it.

Five Meetings To Avoid

By @MeetingBoy

Many meetings are ruined by people – the attendees, the meeting holder – but some meetings are just doomed no matter what.

1. Weekly Status Meeting. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Status meetings should go the way of the dodo. No one can make a status meeting interesting, because the whole premise is flawed. Instead of holding status meetings, the project manager (or some poor stooge who reports to them that they delegate all their boring tasks to) should go from person to person to get their updates. Or the project manager could make each member of the team stop by their office for five minutes to catch them up. Either way, the total amount of time wasted would be greatly reduced. Do the math:

12 member team in status, each has 5 minutes of updates:

Status meeting = 12 people for 1 hour + 1 hour for project manager = 13 hours

Individual updates to project manager = 5 minutes for 12 people + 1 hour for project manager = 2 hours

Either way the project manager only spends one hour, but everyone else on the team saves 55 minutes. Why doesn’t this happen? Why?!!!!

#joinmetip: You can use join.me to collaborate quickly with other team members or project managers – without wasting anyone’s time. Time is money, people.

2. False brainstorms. These are brainstorms for projects with tiny budgets and narrow room to operate. Lately, I have these all the time. What they really want is what we did last quarter…but in green. A different shade of green. You don’t need a room full of creative people coming up with ideas when you don’t really want ideas! It’s not really a brainstorm at all.

3. Meetings to plan other meetings. Because it’s a planning meeting, people feel they don’t need an agenda, so it becomes hour after hour of flailing.

The true agenda of a meeting to plan another meeting:

  • Remind everyone what a big shot they are and that their meeting is super-important. Not like all those other meetings.
  • Keep people from working on other projects, making them more dependent on this one.

Meetings to plan other meetings aren’t to make the meeting more efficient, but to prepare people for the boredom in the later meeting. It’s supposed to be a boredom vaccine.”

#joinmetip: As we like to say, get your people together without getting your people together. What does that mean? It means instantly collaborating with exactly who you need to meet with – without ever moving from your seat. Or having a “meeting” to plan other meetings.

4. All-company meetings, especially annual recap ones. The ratio of actual information dissemination to VIP preening and bragging is criminally low. In fact often the whole thing could have been accomplished with a 2-sentence email:

Raises–only 2%, bonuses canceled. Company financial health poor.

5. All other meetings*.

*except raises, bonuses

And of course this list isn’t comprehensive. I could go all day:

  • Any meeting where it’s unacceptable to say “that’s what she said”.
  • Any meeting where Ralph Wiggum would be in the 50th percentile.
  • After a popular celebrity dies. No work will be done or discussed.
  • When the boss is in a bad mood.

Although these didn’t make the top 5, can you make a case for any one of these meetings? Do you have any of your own to add?

         

Try the Pro, Win a Nano

Clever title, I know. It took both cups of coffee this morning to get that one.

So most of you know join.me as a simple, lightweight, FREE online meeting and screen sharing product.  And you know we don’t mince words when it comes to free.  But did you know there’s a pro version of join.me with all sorts of extra goodies…and it’s also freeISH?  ISH as in you can try it for 14 days without any sort of opt-out routine.  We hate it when people do that.

join.me pro has been out since October 21 and we’ve gotten some really great feedback on the features. But we’re never satisified till you’re satisfied, so here’s the deal:

Go Pro. Show your mom your pictures of vacation that are too big to send or collaborate with a colleague on that PowerPoint that’s due in five minutes (hey, it happens.)

It’s free for 14 days and costs you nothing but the five seconds it will take to enter in an email address and a password. We don’t need your credit card, your name, or your birthday.  All we ask is that you give us some feedback.  The key word being ‘ask.’  Even that is not a requirement.

And here’s where the Nano comes in. Since we’re asking the favor, we’re happy to reward you for thoughts.  Leave us a comment on this post with your feedback, and you’re automatically entered to win one of three new Nanos. We want to hear all of it. What do you love? What do you want? What features do you absolutely need in join.me pro?

You have until midnight on November 23 (winners announced the 24th) to check it out and leave your feedback. Besides, have you seen the new Nanos? Maybe I’ll keep one for myself.

(Just kidding… kind of.)

– Maggie

         

November 15- Free Webinar: 5 Great On-Line Tools for Business

I first got in touch with Andy when he did a great video tutorial of join.me on his blog. I couldn’t let a join.me advocate like this fly by – so I pinged him and asked him if he’d be interested in collaborating with join.me by doing a free webinar. Here’s what’s happening:

Business growth happens when great ideas, great people and great execution meet.  Using web-based tools to manage your business makes sense for huge companies and solopreneurs.  On Monday, November 15, Business, Technology Consultant Andy Traub will hold a free webinar highlighting five web-based tools that businesses can use to manage their social media relationships, control their schedules, collaborate with team members and master the onslaught of email.  Andy has helped small and large companies learn to use these tools to better manage their business communications and he’ll show you how to use them to grow your business by increasing productivity and decreasing inefficient systems.

And if THAT isn’t incentive enough to join (what, I’m the only one with an onslaught of email?), every attendee will be entered to win one of two iPod Nanos as a door prize from join.me. You know, just for showing up, being yourself and checking out join.me.

RSVP here, or join us at https://join.me/142-709-272.

See you there!

         

Collabragicians: Joanna Kristall

You’ve seen the first, and now here’s the second in our series of video interviews called “Collabragicians.” This Skype interview features Joanna Kristall – one of our first join.me advocates and a three-time winner on our join.me Coffee Breaks.

Are you a frequent join.me user with a story to tell? Let me know at maggie@join.me and let’s talk.

         

Truth In Resumes – a Brainstorm with @MeetingBoy

All @MeetingBoy and I ever talk about is work, meeting, colleagues, and of course… meetings. But what we sometimes forget is a lot of the reasons why meetings are the way they are is all about the people in the meeting. He came up with a great idea and wanted to brainstorm with our join.me users. Check out what he has in store for Friday…

This Friday at 2:00 PM Eastern, I’ll be hosting an online brainstorming session on join.me called “Truth In Resumes”. You can check it out at https://join.me/meetingboy

Truth In Resumes is my project to determine what people’s resumes would say if they really described what it is to work with them. A few examples:

  • Colicky Coworker: Smart, capable, but whines about everything. Even when he gets his way.
  • Ambitious Incompetent: Not good at anything but shifting blame and screaming. Fired from every job.
  • Sales Manager: Makes a lot of sales in a good economy, not so good now.
  • Arrogant Executive: MBA in Business Jargon from Ivy League school. “I was once a big deal.” His opinions, while irrelevant, must be heard!
  • Senior Accounts Payable Clerk: 25 years at the job and counting. Insists we do everything the same way we did in 1985. Demands everything in triplicate; complains her desk is “buried in paper”. Can’t be fired. Rude. Dream job was at DMV, settled for this.
  • Slippery Account Director: Favorite trick is to request something, receive it, ignore it, then go complain to your boss that I didn’t get it. “It’s the perfect plan because then I can blame you later when things go wrong.”
  • Unpromotable Jerk: “A lot of people don’t get along with me. I assume it is because they are intimidated by my intelligence and great ideas.”

To prepare, please nominate someone you have worked with by leaving a short description of them in the comments by Thursday morning. Leave off their real names to protect the guilty, the lazy and the bullies, and just refer to them with a descriptive name like I did.

Talk to you Friday.

– @MeetingBoy