Engineers at work always hold meetings as a venue of what’s happening and what needs to be discussed in lieu of the status and projects of the company. And when engineers at certain episodes of a meeting feel a little lost in the way, maybe on a hangover, there are some tricks that can come in handy to fake that you are contributing to the meeting or as if you are really smart, at least at the moment.
Here are those tricks:
Make a Venn Diagram.
If you are still at the right mind to make one, draw a Venn diagram as part of the discussion. No one cares if it’s a messy Venn diagram – the messier, the better. The engineers in the meeting will have something to argue by then with what you have produced. What’s important is that you have offered something on the table. That is smart.
Play with your calculator.
Especially when there is so much math and calculations to do during the meeting, you can just play with your calculator while everyone else solves the real thing. It’s a risky move though because you might be asked of what appeared to your calculator in comparison to others, but mostly your co-engineers are correct with their math.
Pull off the “step back” line.
At a time where everyone doesn’t meet to a point, be the one who will say, “whoa guys, can we take a step back here?” and follow with “what problem are we really trying to solve?” You will instantly get the spotlight from being the one who doesn’t have any opinion, or care at that matter, at all.
Nod continuously while pretending to take notes.
This works all the time. When the topic does not really affect you, you can just to draw sexual drawings with your notebook while nodding continuously. This will leave an impression to the one leading the meeting or discussing that you are paying attention when you are actually not.
Say “will this scale?” to any suggestions.
Regardless of what your co-engineers say, no matter how stupid or brilliant, be the one who somehow counterchecks their ideas if they will fare. Speak as if you are the most realist. It’s effortless but works all the time.
Walk around the room.
Engineers who have some sort of authority can do this without having to offend anyone in the room. Someone who gets up from his seat automatically gets respects the moment he stands. More so if he folds his arms, walks around, or goes to the corner or leans against the wall. Such actions can fake actual thinking.
Request the presenter to go back a slide.
The presenter may be pissed off by this request to you advantage. Others in the cold room will think that you’re paying closer attention than the others because they think you might have missed something important they didn’t discover. But when the presenter does go back a slide and you have nothing to say, just ask anything about the flashed statistic or just retract, and say “okay, I got it.”
Go out of the room to answer a fake phone call.
This may appear to others as an act of not making the meeting a priority; but more often than not, if you make it appear that you are taking an important call, your engineer fellas will think how busy and important you are. They will respect you for it and may not bother you anymore with the meeting because of that urgent phone call.
You can only pull any of this off one at a time so it wouldn’t be so obvious that you are one heck of a lazy and dumb engineer.