Here is an example of how to respectfully decline a meeting to make time to work on a higher priority.
We occasionally find ourselves in meetings when our time could be better spent doing something else of greater value. I previously wrote about how to respond to and politely decline meeting invitations. This post is about declining a meeting you have previously accepted and communicating that in advance to all participants because some of them may be expecting you to attend. This sometimes happens with recurring meetings where you need to participate in some but not all instances. Sometimes you previously accepted a meeting, but things have changed since that no longer require your participation.
I recommend that you do daily and weekly reviews of your upcoming meetings and consider which ones you should decline to make better use of your time.
———- Forwarded message ———
From: Rajiv Pant <rajiv@[redacted]>
This initiative is important to me. I was part of the kick off and subsequent discussions, and this project is on a good track. I will skip this instance of the meeting because I don’t need to personally contribute in, nor make decisions in this next meeting.
I trust [named colleagues] — who I have discussed with — to represent my interests in this meeting. I will follow up with them afterwards, as needed
I will use this time to focus on other work that needs my attention.
If I am missing something and y’all do need me to personally attend this meeting — let me know and I will participate.
— Rajiv Pant राजीव पंत 潘睿哲