How To Plan and Select Meeting Rooms for Your Business Meeting

Business meetings can be staff meetings, sales presentations or business proposals to potential investors. When you have an important business meeting coming up, you need to make sure that everything is perfect if you want to make the proper impression. That is why you should take the time to find the right room and use the proper steps to create your perfect meeting.

Multimedia Presentations

Your meeting rooms need to be able to accommodate multimedia presentations. That means having a screen to project on to and a monitor to connect a computer to. The room should be arranged so that everyone can see the presentation and the presentation needs to be large enough to be clearly seen by everyone in the room.

Internet Connection

Social media and Internet tools are important parts of the new age of business meetings. Not all of your attendees that want to attend your meeting are going to be able to be there in person. But you can still allow important people to be part of your meeting by having an Internet connection and video-enabled computer in the meeting room.

The right kind of computer will allow people to use video conferencing services to see what is going on in the meeting and offer their insight as well. Your video conferencing software should allow remote attendees to share documents and make document changes in real time. Your meeting room computer should have an Internet-enabled video camera to allow your remote attendees to see what is going on in the meeting.

Many of the social media platforms allow for multiple people to utilize a single video conferencing system. This can be a great way to save money on video conferencing services for your company an your remote attendees.

Attendees

Create a list of attendees at least a month in advance and send out meeting notices as soon as possible. When you get your RSVP list, that will tell you how large of a meeting room you are going to need.

Utilize social media platforms to allow people to RSVP for the meeting, share insight into the meeting content and ask any pertinent meeting questions.

Agenda

A comprehensive meeting agenda, which includes meeting times and the names of people who will be making presentations, should be circulated to all attendees at least two weeks prior to the meeting. This will allow attendees time to prepare the materials they will need to attend the meeting and contribute.

Encourage attendees to ask agenda questions prior to the meeting so that all attendees may benefit from the answers. You can use social networking platforms to allow attendees to submit questions and then utilize those platforms to submit answers as well.

Each business meeting should have a defined purpose in order to get people to attend and contribute. When you spend the necessary time to prepare your meeting materials and find the perfect meeting room, then that will significantly improve the quality of your meeting.

The Business Meeting Revisited – Waste of Time or Key Strategic Tool?

Few words bring such strong negative reactions as ‘business meeting’. As companies analyze their meeting times against results they often throw up their hands in disgust and conclude that meetings are a waste of time and of no use. Not so fast. While it is true that not having a meeting may be better than having a bad meeting, it does not follow that the business meeting itself is to blame. No matter how good the idea, if those that execute the plan fail then the project itself fails.

‘It’s a bother, it’s a pain, so little gets done, same old stuff, nothing ever happens, it’s always a bore, it lasts too long, and all we do is sit and listen to one or two people drone on about the company’s woes.’ Whine, whine, whine. Case closed.

And that’s the most difficult part; overcoming apathy and boredom from employees and managers that are jaded after continued exposure to bad meetings. It makes starting a meeting difficult and gaining momentum from that meeting even more difficult. The best place to start is to determine what results you would like to have from the meeting. This will guide you in determining the agenda.

The agenda should be written with a time allotted to each item. Meetings should rarely go over an hour especially if they start on time. Start exactly on time and you will ensure promptness at the next meeting. After each agenda item put the person responsible for reporting or moderating that agenda item so that someone ‘owns’ that agenda item. If you are starting business meetings make it a goal to spread the agenda items out to different meeting participants.

The first agenda item should be something light and not nuts and bolts financial. I like to bring up items such as image and attitude here. The last agenda item should be the next meeting’s time and place.

Don’t overload the agenda with too many items or too many heavy stress items if that is avoidable. If the business meeting becomes too negative it can dampen whatever enthusiasm it generates. Some agenda items can be ‘rolled’ over into the next agenda. Try to vary your agenda items for each meeting to keep the agenda fresh. That also means you should be discussing relevant and current topics.

Plan your agenda to end on an upbeat note. You really want the last impression of the meeting to be a positive one. If the meeting ends on a sour note it will leave a sour taste. If participation is important try to get each person present in the meeting to say something. This may be difficult at large meetings but in smaller groups it creates the impression of being a part of the meeting. Meeting participation can be a goal itself.

Some people tend to speak more than others so don’t let one or two people do all the talking. Especially you. It is best to have a moderator or leader. This person is responsible for opening and closing the meeting as well as making certain the agenda moves along in a timely manner.

It is possible to rotate moderators from meeting to meeting. This depends on the meeting participants, their capabilities and their willingness to participate.

Do not expect too much change too fast. It has been my experience that it might take several months of weekly meetings to reach desired results. And it is best not to create unrealistic expectations up front as they may sabotage your efforts.

It’s OK to disagree and disagreements often make for excellent meetings. As the moderator, it is your job to maintain calm and control. If everyone is yawning a good disagreement might even wake them up. After each meeting do a self-evaluation on how the meeting went. What could have done better? What went right? What did not go as expected?

And stay persistent. It is very hard to change either individual or group behavior and that’s what meetings are mostly about. Some call it behavior modification but perhaps changing the range of behaviors is more appropriate. Some call it training or education. And sometimes it’s art and sometimes it’s science but seldom is it predictable.

Often it doesn’t always work as planned. If you have a bad meeting shrug it off and see how you can improve the next one. Also try to stay in the right frame of mind and perspective so you don’t get frustrated too quickly.

There is no right or wrong way to have a meeting; just ways that make meetings more effective. The best strategy to make your meeting effective is to open it up, do what it takes to get participation and work through a relevant and prioritized agenda. Go with your gut and don’t be afraid of taking small risks to keep momentum. Even if you flop folks will see you are sincere and good things will happen.

The results just might surprise you.

Online Business Meetings – Using Technology to Cut Business Travel Costs

If you have a small business, you obviously envision it becoming a big and well established enterprise. As the business grows beyond city, country and continental borders, communication modes need to be upgraded. This is why as you nurture your business you have to think of the best way to cut traveling costs while maintaining a high level of productivity during business meetings.

In conventional business setting, designated employees would ideally travel across the world to make business deals or to attend conferences that would market the business. These business trips entail booking a hotel for accommodation, booking a meeting room, having transport arrangements to various meeting points, setting aside traveling allowances as well as organizing for meals for the traveling persons. We all agree that employees are bound to make fraudulent claims after a trip.

Some people misuse these business trips and turn them into their personal expeditions at the expense of their companies. Other employees turn the trips into a shopping spree. Monitoring the steps of your employees while they are away requires a lot of time and money thus many organizations would not think of spending funds to check on their employees whom they have sent away on business.

The best way to curb problems arising from traveling far to have meetings is to invest in a good online meeting room, with a powerful computer which can transmit multimedia. Have a web-cam, headsets if needed and install necessary software to support communication as the meeting goes on. It is also important to have a standby generator that ensures the meeting is not affected by power blackouts. With technology, you can link to your customers, suppliers and business partners at the comfort of your office.

In the long run, if you compare the money used to set up an online business meeting and that used to send staff to a physical meeting point, you will definitely settle for online meetings.

Get Out Of The Office! What Can Off-Site Business Meetings Offer Your Company?

If you’re in charge of planning corporate meetings for your company, the first decision is likely whether you’re going to have it within your own company’s office or if you should use an off-site venue for your corporate event. While the right choice depends on a number of factors, including the size of your company and your meeting’s agenda, here are some things that an off-site business meeting can provide your company.

Planning A Professional Presentation? Off-Site Business Meetings Can Provide Pro Audio/Visual Equipment

Have you ever attended a business meeting where more time was spent trying to get the audio/visual equipment up and running? This situation is all too common and is frustrating for both attendees and corporate meeting leaders. By holding your business meetings or corporate events at a location with professional audio/visual equipment, you’ll ensure that your time isn’t wasted trying to get the microphone or presentation equipment working.

Look For A Location With A Catering Staff That Can Hand Pick The Perfect Menu

Corporate events that last all day mean you’ll need to feed everyone. While it’s true that you can always order some pizza or call a local sandwich shop to arrange meals, this means you’ll need someone to take the time out of the business meeting to set everything up, as well as provide drinks, plates, napkins, silverware and more. Instead, having your corporate meeting off-site means that the site’s staff will be able to serve your employees whatever you’d like — forget about those old stand-bys, pizza or cold sandwiches. They’ll also be able to cater to attendees with allergies or food preferences, such as providing a meal for a vegetarian. Best of all, you won’t need to worry about setting the food out or cleaning up the mess when everyone is done eating. If you choose the right site that has a professional chef and a full catering staff, you’ll be able to provide your employees with cuisine that might just rival your city’s best restaurants.

Enough Space, Whether You’re A Group Of 10 Or 1000

If you’re planning a large corporate event, chances are good that you just don’t have the space within your location to house everyone. Many sites that are available for conference meetings will be able to handle your large group, without requiring a lot of set up on your end. These sites for business meetings can place chairs in rows for presentations or educational seminars or they can seat everyone at round tables that are perfect for meals or awards ceremonies.

If your conference meeting is on the smaller side, you don’t need to worry about having too much space with an off-site event. Many sites that are used for corporate events can tailor your space if you need something for a small group. As long as you choose the right site for your business meetings, you’ll still receive the same personal service.

Holding your conference or meeting at an off-site location means that you’ll conduct your business meeting with professional audio/visual equipment and a catered meal that your employees will appreciate. Whether you’re planning a corporate meeting for 10 or 1000, consider calling a venue that specializes in corporate events and business meetings to see how they can help.