They are to make people (at least some people) feel important. They are not to get things done.
I am reading Let’s Stop Meeting Like This – which I can recommend. His approach is the exact opposite – meetings are to get things done.
Why the vast difference?
The answer will not surprise you – because we are talking about different social contexts. Doing it right – or doing it wrong.
Anyone past the age of three has experienced both – and has been carefully instructed to not notice the second kind (doing it wrong). It happens, we are told – but noticing it would make bad things happen – things that are never specified. Better not to notice them at all.
Better to be stupid.