Magazine article Business Credit

Six Steps to a Sizzling Meeting

Magazine article Business Credit

Six Steps to a Sizzling Meeting

Article excerpt

You have been trapped in too many boring meetings.

They don't start on time, the leader drags the meeting out, and you leave wondering what was accomplished. Now--you are in charge, and you vow this will not be one of those meetings! Instead of planning your next meeting with dread, here is how to set it up to make it sizzle with these easy steps:

STEP #1: Agenda Tips

At your program planning session, have everyone who needs to make an announcement at the meeting submit it to you in writing. Then set up a detailed agenda, down to the minute, to distribute to everyone involved in the presentation of the meeting. The audience members should have a generalized agenda so they can anticipate the order of the program.

Using several people to make announcements can be energizing to the group if you follow a couple of simple rules. When making an announcement, the person must keep it snappy, talking from 30 seconds to no more than a minute. Since the announcers know their positions on the program from the detailed agenda, they should be waiting to step on stage immediately when the person preceding them is finished. Have no dead air space: this keeps the meeting moving, and sparks energy in the room.

STEP #2: Room Traffic Flow

Remember, traffic flow is by design. Keep the room inviting and design the tables on the outer perimeter for food, registration, products, and membership. Think of the room as a whole and how it flows together.

The Registration Table should be divided into alphabetized sections to keep it flowing. Give plenty of space for registration. You don't want to start the meeting off with irritated people who have waited in long lines.

Food placement should be near the Registration Table.A simple snack and beverage can work. Food should be available 30 minutes before the meeting starts and while registration is open. Always have ample water for your guests, with someone to service the water containers during the breaks.

Because you are trying to attract new members, keep your Membership Service Table accessible and attractively staffed. Have membership packets ready to present to potential new members. Each packet should contain a letter from the leader of your group, providing an instant connection.

What are you known for? Develop products for an added source of revenue. People come to the meeting ready to take something of value home--and are willing to buy products to reinforce their experience.

Stage your speaker near the audience. Avoid stages that are too distrait or too tall, unless you have large monitors so everyone can feel close to the speaker. One of the most difficult stages I ever spoke on was at a plush country club. A four-foot stage, with a floor-to-ceiling window behind it, separated me from the audience. I stepped on stage as the sun set with a golfer swinging on the course behind me. My face was shadowed by the sun glare, and "all you could see was my silhouette. Do your speaker a favor, and check our the room at the time of day the meeting will take place, beforehand.

STEP #3: Monthly Meetings

Program variety is vital. Humor sells, marketing is a hot topic, trends of the industry are interesting and titles draw people to attend. Give your programs variety Remember to ask, "What are our goals?" Pull your membership annually to find out which programs they enjoyed most, and build your next year's program around the findings.

Awards Programs

An Annual Awards Day builds the excitement of the industry. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.