The next time you’re in a boring meeting, take note of where everyone is seated and decide if these descriptions paint an accurate picture of your co-workers’ personality types.
According to business etiquette expert Lydia Ramsey, this is what a person’s meeting seat says about him or her:
- On boss’s right. Highly supportive of the boss, and may be – or may want to be – second in command within the group.
- On boss’s left. Likes being close to the power base and supports the boss, yet expresses opposing views on occasion, often by saying, “Yes, but … .”
- In the middle. Tends to listen to all sides before expressing their own views, or may still be decoding the group’s dynamics.
- End of the table. Likes to keep eye contact with all attendees, tend to be extroverts and active participants and are usually good at relationship building.
- Away from the table. “Outside” seating – what’s left when all places at the table are taken – is where the aloof or disinterested usually wind up, because they arrived late or really don’t feel like participating in the first place.
- Directly across from the boss. This chair is often filled by the devil’s advocate in the group, the one who challenges authority, gripes and complains.