Tip 1. Go Off-Site. While it might seem like a good idea to cut costs by holding the meeting at your own office, it can be incredibly inefficient in the long run due to typical work distractions. A change of locale promotes efficiency and gives everyone a change of pace to make new decisions.
Tip 2. Break Things Up. Go for 4-5 smaller breaks, instead of 2-3 longer breaks. These frequent short breaks will encourage everyone to stretch, lightly chat, and recharge; they will be more creative, while not losing the focus of the meeting that can often happen with a long break.
Tip 3. Offer a Variety of Seating. If your venue makes it possible, try to switch up the seating options throughout the room. It’s great for everyone to have more choices, it makes people more comfortable and also switches up the traditional meeting format. View different seating options for meetings at the Paso Robles Inn here.
Tip 4. Present Differently. Not everyone is a Power-Point expert, and presentations can often be text and slide heavy without minimal active participation or presentation. To boost audience interest and retention, encourage presenters to create presentations that are image heavy and keep the text short and sweet.
Tip 5. Involve Audience Participation. One of the most tragic flaws of an otherwise efficient presentation is when the audience simply doesn’t care; out of tune with the presentation, they might pay more attention to their phones. Combat this by incorporating the audience heavily into the presentation by asking questions or opening the table up to comments and suggestions.
Tip 6. Consider an Icebreaker. To make everyone more comfortable with their surroundings and the other attendees, consider a short icebreaker at the beginning to facilitate talking and bonding. Anything that gets attendees talking and building connections with other participants will improve your meeting’s effectiveness.
Tip 7. Promote Snacking. Instead of one large meal, encourage employees to snack throughout the meeting. Many people prefer a variety of small meals throughout the day instead of three square meals, and many nutritionists proclaim this as healthier. Encouraging snacking will also help avoid the sluggishness that occurs after eating a big, filling meal, keeping employees in tip-top shape for the meeting.
Tip 8. Healthy Food & Drink. Most importantly, every employee needs fuel, especially for an all-day meeting. Instead of getting the usual sandwiches and chips, stock up the meeting location with eggs, salads, healthy vegetables, and multigrain breads. With the right, high-protein foods, participants have energy and vibrancy that isn’t dulled by an upcoming crash.
Tip 9. Dress Casual. When you let everyone know ahead of time that the dress code for the meeting is casual, you’re letting them know that you care about their comfort and want to establish a comfortable and casual environment. This can only help the perception of the meeting and ability to get things done.
Tip 10. Let Everyone Think Ahead. Another typical meeting flaw is presenting an information-heavy powerpoint and then requesting thoughts and opinions from the audience. While it’s possible that they already have an opinion, it is must more helpful to send them the powerpoint 48 hours in advance, and ask them to prepare questions and thoughts. This will make the meeting-time more valuable, since everyone should be prepared.