Planning a corporate meeting requires a lot of preparation and planning. Ultimately, the goal is to make sure that everything runs smoothly and the focus of the meeting remains clear at all times.
Your meeting or event is a reflection of your company, and the worst possible outcome would be for everyone to walk away feeling like they wasted their time. If you follow these steps and really put the time in chances are, that won’t be the case.
Planning a Corporate Meeting: Tips for Success
Here are a few things you can do to make sure you’re staying on track while planning your corporate meeting or event.
Make it Clear Why You are Holding the Meeting
Choose a theme. Make sure it’s related to the purpose of your event, of course. What messages and takeaways do you want to impart on your attendees?
Choose a theme that will help you best reach your goals and then keep it at the forefront of your mind throughout the planning process.
Whether your company is looking to introduce or educate employees about a new product or to communicate other company-wide changes, a related theme will help tie the whole event together. Create a detailed itinerary for the meeting, relating all topics and activities back to this one, clear idea.
This will make it a lot easier to keep bringing everyone’s focus (including your own) back to what’s really important.
Find a Venue that is Right for Your Corporate Meeting
Choose a venue that not only fits all of your employees, but that does so comfortably. The space should have enough room for everyone in your company, while still serving the theme and purpose of the event, and the demographics of your group.
In order to make sure the venue will best serve the purpose of your meeting and the people in attendance, be sure to ask questions when shopping around for a space.
Here are a few other factors you might want to consider when choosing your meeting venue:
Comfort not capacity
When determining if all your employees will fit within a certain space, it’s good idea to ask how many people a venue can hold comfortably, rather than what the capacity is.
Seating for presentations and activities
If you have a lot of group activities or multiple presentations planned, be sure to ask what options you have in terms of seating arrangements.
Depending on the nature of your meeting, you’ll want to be sure the space can be arranged in a way that allows you to execute any speeches, presentations, or interactive segments to your best ability.
Meeting and employee engagement styles
You may also want to consider the nature of your event, as well as your employees and their preferences.
For example, if the event is meant to be more casual and collaborative, you should be sure to find a space that can be arranged for a more intimate set up.
On the other hand, if you need to inform employees of company changes or demonstrate a new system to a large amount of people, you will want to look for venues that can cater to those needs.
You should also find out what the parking situation is. Oddly enough, parking can affect the experience and give employees a negative attitude before they even walk in
Is there enough space for all employees to drive their own vehicles to the event? If not, you may want to find another venue or advise employees to make accommodations for carpooling.
Plan the Presentation
When planning a corporate meeting, the presentation will probably be the most important part of the event. If you don’t take time to plan ahead for how you’re going to deliver key information to your people, you could end up not getting your message across at all.
If the presentation portion of the meeting includes video, audio, slideshows, or any other form of technology, be sure to figure out those tech logistics ahead of time.
Determine your needs in terms of lighting, projection, and sound in order for smooth delivery of your presentation. On top of that, you also should test each device for troubleshooting prior to your meeting and make sure to have a backup plan, incase something doesn’t go according to plan.
Make the Experience Engaging
Interesting presentations and videos are great, but sitting in a chair for even a couple of hours can make your crowd inattentive. Keep things interesting, but above all, make sure your employees are active participants in the meeting itself.
Throw in a quick team building event, giveaway, or fun game. Incorporating breaks and snacks is another good way to give attendees time to regain their focus.
For longer events, it’s helpful to make sure people have time to get up, walk around, and stretch their legs from time to time.
Regardless of the purpose of your meeting, if you can keep employees talking and actively participating rather than listening passively, you’re likely to get much better results. (And keep people from falling asleep!)
Have a Q&A at the End
Open up the floor for questions at the end of the meeting. This is a great way to recap and reiterate some of the most important information from the that was discussed during the meeting.
It’s also a perfect way to clarify anything that people may have missed or that may have been unclear.
Consider letting everyone know about the end-of-the-day Q&A right at the beginning of the meeting and instruct them to write down questions as they arise.
This practice gives employees a chance to take notes so they can ask specific, pointed questions. This will be more impactful and beneficial for everyone.
Saving questions for the end of the meeting also helps minimize interruptions and repetitive questions throughout your presentation.
Ask for Feedback after the Meeting via Email
Instead of just telling your employees some new pieces of information and sending them back out into the office, why not ask for some feedback so you can do better next time?
Not only does this include your employees in the experience and show them that you value their opinion, it’s also a great way to get an idea of what you’re doing right and what you can improve on. In the long run, this will only help you to identify new opportunities for growth and success.