Whether working from home or at the office, engaging employees in team meetings is essential. Employees dread boring staff meetings, and often little is accomplished. Making work meetings fun and engaging can boost problem-solving and innovative thinking. Employees who are interested in the meeting and conversation tend to participate more. There are many ways that leaders can spice up a meeting. Keep reading to discover five ways to make a meeting unique.
Ways to Make a Meeting Unique
1. Off-site location
Consider having the meeting off-site. Moving the get-together to a business meeting and event space can provide a change of scenery, accommodations, and amenities. Many meeting and event spaces specialize in making get-togethers unique and out of the ordinary. They often provide catering, technology for presentations, and comfortable accommodations designed for teamwork.
Alternatively, consider taking the meeting outside. Fresh air boosts morale and can improve employee attitudes. A meeting over lunch at a local restaurant can be another great way to show employees that they are valued while working together to accomplish a goal.
2. Home Office Scavenger Hunt
If everyone is working from home, organize a quick scavenger hunt to start the meeting. Give employees three to five items they must find as quickly as possible. Reward one point for each item and a bonus point for getting back on camera first. Some ideas include a baby picture, an expired item of food from the pantry, money from another country, a favorite book, or a piece of athletic equipment. The list goes on. Leaders could also choose items that spark conversation, such as a baby picture. Allowing employees to explain one of their items for a minute can be a good ice breaker for a meeting.
3. Team Building Activities
Consider including team-building activities in the meeting. Chair races, minefields, and other team-building games provide an opportunity for social interaction during a business meeting. These kinds of activities help strengthen team spirit and develop group bonding. Employees will have fun memories from the time together and won’t be so hesitant to join in on the next one. Creating a friendly work environment where everyone gets to know each other can optimize employees’ productivity.
4. Group Work
Instead of setting up tables and chairs to look at the speaker, organize several round tables for three to four people. Designate a host for each roundtable discussion. The goal is to generate ideas and encourage innovative thinking. The host leads each discussion, and then each table has an ambassador who reports back to the whole group. After a specified time, employees change tables and discuss a new topic with new people. This more interactive meeting can be more productive than lecturing employees.
5. Walk and Talk
Sitting at a table listening to the boss speak for an hour is the best way to stifle creativity and energy. Consider a “walk and talk” meeting. Several Silicon Valley leaders, such as Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg, have used this strategy with much success. “Walking and talking” creates a more informal meeting and can get people to participate. There is a greater chance that people will work together and join in discussions. “Walking and talking” also requires employees to focus. No one can passively attend while slumped in a chair, or snoozing. During a “walk and talk” meeting, everyone is present and focused.
Try one of these ideas to liven up any business meeting. You might be surprised by the positive attitudes and productivity the strategies spark.
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