By Aaron Velazquez, Workzones
In the last two years, the business meeting landscape has changed significantly, leaving three main options: remote, in-person, and hybrid. While all three have their merits, let’s go over some basics to keep in mind when planning any kind of business meeting, from a board retreat to training, off-site brainstorming sessions, or client meetings.
This has been the dominant meeting medium for the last two years, and it shows with remote technology advancing and humans adapting to the environment. While not the most ideal way to hold a meeting, it does have its advantages. First, it is likely to be the least expensive option with all of the participants only needing an internet connection and device to tune in. This also means that you can reach more constituents, regardless of where they are physically located which is a plus for remote workers. And, as the host of a remote meeting, having your presentation created and practiced ahead of time will ensure a more productive session. You may also want to consider getting out of the house, perhaps to a local coworking space, to ensure a distraction-free environment and reliable internet.
Despite their simplicity, it is more difficult to generate a strong level of engagement and creativity in a remote meeting. While this medium may be fine for meetings where people are simply being talked to, any efforts to garner participation, generate ideas, and build genuine consensus are going to be better done through other mediums, especially now that we are no longer locked down.
Dating back to the first humans, this has been the most tried and true method of holding a meeting. If it worked for nomadic hunting parties, the Roman Consulate, and the founding of the US, I am sure it will work for your marketing conference. Not only are in-person meetings conducive to audience engagement, collaboration, and attention retention, they also offer the environment to build company culture and reward people for their work by making a boring business trip a well-rounded experience.
If you are planning an in-person meeting, the most important thing to keep in mind is the venue. While hotels and other meeting halls may have been the predominant options in the past, the rise of coworking spaces gives you a much better alternative. Not only are they often more affordable, with their multitude of room and package options, they also allow a higher level of customization, allowing you to have your choice, your way.
For example, here at Workzones, you can reserve rooms with a flexible schedule, order food from wherever you like, and have the room set up in whatever fashion you please, all with in-house assistance, allowing you to save time and money.
Despite all these advantages, in-person meetings still fail to capture constituents that are unable or unwilling to meet in-person, which is where hybrid meetings come in.
Combining the best of the remote and in-person worlds, hybrid meetings offer a balance. You get all the traditional advantages of in-person meeting but without the disadvantages, as the hybrid aspect allows you to capture those constituents you may have missed out on. This means that you can have a similar level of engagement to an in-person meeting, but also maximize your audience and/or perhaps have a remote speaker. With this style of meeting, not only do you have to keep the venue in mind, just like any in-person meeting, you also have to factor in the technological aspect. Depending on your level of competence and the gear at your disposal, you may be able to host a hybrid meeting on your own. However, you most likely should outsource this to ensure a smooth integration.
Here at Workzones, our partnership with HypeCats allows us to offer hybrid meetings with varying levels of assisted production. Further, we are located in beautiful Santa Barbara, a great place to host your meeting whether you’re an employer scheduling a holistic experience for your employees, or you’re the remote worker looking for a workcation. And while you may think you can accomplish all this in a hotel, Airbnb, or Vrbo, you’ll likely find these to be full of distractions, poor internet connections, lack of privacy, and inflexible check in/check out times.
From giving a great location for any type of meeting to providing you with the necessary equipment or fully producing turn-key meetings, Workzones can aid in your hybrid meeting needs, all with worry-free technical support.