There are about 25 million meetings per day in the U.S., and only a handful are productive or engaging.
If our schedules are regularly filled with meetings, then it’s likely we’ve become jaded from them. When the agendas, meeting spaces, and [typically low] energy seem the same it’s easy to fall into an unmotivated, unproductive, and disengaged mood. And what happens when you or your employees are not engaged?
Productivity is low, in fact, 67% of meetings are considered majorly unproductive.
So how can we make meetings more engaging and more productive?
With fun dept., we’ve compiled our favorite ways to make your meetings more memorable and motivating:
1. Tell someone how they WOW you
Canpa, a client of ours who was just awarded first place in “Great Place to Work,” adopted a practice we use in our workshops and masterclasses. In our sessions, we ask attendees to share how someone in the room has WOW’d them. Canpa went even further to add this activity to the beginning of each meeting but to pick one person that would be the center of all the WOWs. Then with each meeting, the WOW recipient rotates. Murat Ozcan, the Vice President of Canpa, says this usually brings laughs, smiles, and sometimes happy tears to the start of each meeting. What’s a better way to start than on a happy note?
2. Play some intro tunes
Do you have someone on your team that loves to DJ? Music is an easy way to set the tone for just about anything! Playing some tunes as everyone enters the meeting (either in person or virtually) is always a hit! "Sweet Caroline" always has everybody singing and laughing. If you rotate DJs, you can also give different members a chance to share their favorite songs. At DH, we have team members who love country, electronic music, and 90s hip-hop… so you never know what you’re going to get!
3. Share a sappy video or story
Connectedness is an essential element in creating employee happiness, and sometimes it’s hard to find moments of empathy at work. Nothing gets people in an open-minded and empathetic mood than a heartfelt video or story. Afterward, you can take a moment to talk about it, point out your favorite parts, and share some personal insights that may be related. Here are a few that we’ve been loving lately:
- “My dad’s story”: Dream for My Child by MetLife
- ‘Donut Boy’ has delivered over 65k doughnuts to police officers
- Make-A-Wish’s Official Batkid
4. It’s national [fill in the blank] day!
Those nonsensical 'National Day Of' calendars come in handy when you want to add some random fun into your workday. Start your meetings with some trivia questions about the day, have them guess what day it is, and weave it into the theme of your meeting. So if it’s national donut day, bring in a fresh dozen and ask your team members to incorporate something donut-related into their updates!
5. Open up a Box of Fun
Those typical ice-breaker questions are a thing of the past. To think outside of the proverbial box, we recommend a different type - a Box of Fun to kick off any meeting with smiles and FUN! Each Box of Fun is designed for 4-20 people and takes 10-15 minutes to play. It’s easy to use, and you can have team members take turns at leading the activities. Since fun dept. comes up with new ideas all the time, there are different themed boxes for the season and occasion.
Employee engagement should be supported in a sustainable way, not just temporary fixes. See where your organizational culture is at and how you can improve engagement for the long run: