One of the first rules of meeting planning is that no two meetings are completely alike. Programs must be designed from a scalability standpoint, taking into account your goals, group size, and budget amount.
The only element that is universal to all meetings is that attendees’ do not want another experience in which they are lectured for hours on end. Although people go to conferences to learn, what gets them most excited is the opportunity to network in ways that are not possible in the traditional work environment. In order to set the stage for networking to occur, aim to create an event that fosters as much interaction as possible.
Breaking the ice and encouraging guests to interact is not always easy - which is why it is your responsibility to present activities that spark creativity and spontaneity in your attendees.
At one of Q Center’s past meetings, for instance, attendees were broken into teams and participated in a Lego Drag Racing Derby. Groups had to first assemble a dragster out of Lego blocks and then race against other teams to see whose car was built the best. Likewise, scavenger hunts in which teams participate in a series of mini challenges are also very useful in getting attendees to bond with each other in fun and unique ways.
Project simulation activities that require groups of people to work together to complete a joint task are extremely effective in fostering team building and communication. These types of activities spark friendly competition as well as promote collaboration, which helps to ensure that attendees are actively participating instead of daydreaming.
At your next meeting venue, make sure to work with your conference planner to learn how the events and recreation team can help you develop customized programs that fit within your budget. After all, having your attendees engaged and interacting with each other ultimately leads to a more positive and memorable experience for everyone.