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Unsplash/Marvin Meyer
The silent treatment.

The rise of the silent meeting

Lila MacLellan
Member exclusive by Lila MacLellan

Everyone appreciates silence—in theory. Poets and philosophers have paid tribute to its depth and resonance for centuries, allowing silence to stand in for God or the mystery of life itself. Most of us, however, find silence between people to be awkward and anxiety-provoking, particularly in a professional setting. So at work meetings, it’s usually all talk—sometimes painfully so.

But a handful of well-known companies have adopted, and adapted, the idea of the silent meeting, gathering around the real or virtual conference table and saying nothing while getting things done.

So how does this work, exactly?