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What to do if you run late for a morning meeting

Early morning meetings
Early morning meetings
Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images

There is not much more embarrassing than walking in late to a morning meeting. You overslept or there was an accident on the highway that kept you from making it on time. Regardless of whether its a co-worker, boss or client, it's embarrassing to be late.

While it is difficult to eradicate the embarrassment of being late, you can control the situation to minimize the effect of your tardiness.

Following are three tips to keep in mind when scheduling morning meetings:

1. Contact information - Regardless of who you are meeting with in the morning, ask that person at the time you set the meeting for his/her email address and cell phone number in case you need to get in touch with him. Always provide your email address and cell phone number as well.

It is mostly acceptable in today's environment to text someone in a business situation. If you oversleep or are running late for another reason, text that person, apologize and give an estimated time of arrival.

Since schedules run so tight, give that person the option to reschedule. If you will be only 10 or 15 minutes late, the meeting will hold in most cases. However, since you are the one running late, it is polite to give that option.

2. Confirm the day before - To ensure both parties are in agreement on date, time and location, confirm your meeting the day before. If you do not, it is inevitable that appointment details will get mixed up.

3. Set two alarms - Trusting one alarm clock is like putting your career in the hands of a toddler. Your alarm may have a tantrum and decide not to work that morning, it may go dead or you may just shut it off.

That second alarm is your insurance policy against the first alarm not working. Set the second alarm just a couple of minutes after the first was set. That way, if you turn off the first, you'll still be awake enough to recognize the importance of the second alarm.

It is inevitable that at some point in your career, either you or the person you are meeting will run late for a morning meeting. You can either prepare yourself for it or never have morning meetings. That's your choice.

Morning meetings can be valuable to your career success. Much can be accomplished in the morning before the work day begins. Take advantage of these opportunities when they arise. Stick to the three tips above and you'll make the most of those morning meetings.

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