Meetings are still an integral part of conducting business. Most are usually held on the company’s premises, which could be a small, crowded space. This type of meeting room really doesn’t inspire creativity and collaboration. However, what about having a meeting offsite?
Are there any benefits of holding a meeting offsite? The answer is an unequivocal yes!
What is an Offsite Meeting?
An offsite meeting is nothing more than a meeting that’s held away from a company’s office. That’s it! Offsite meetings are sometimes held at hotels, business centres, and may even be conducted remotely.
Offsite meetings are becoming more popular. This type of meeting is usually more productive when held at a new location. Increased productivity is usually attributed to the energised space, which stimulates the mind and frees everyone from office disruptions and more.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the many benefits your company can expect with offsite meetings.
The Benefits of Offsite Meetings
There are several reasons that offsite meetings can make a meeting more effective.
A Change of Scenery
A change of scenery is one of the main benefits of an offsite meeting. A meeting held at an external location breaks up the normal workday for participants. They have some positive expectations when the meeting is held in a new place.
In a more creative, positive meeting environment, there’s a tendency for increased engagement, which leads to better communication and productivity. What’s more, employees invited to an offsite meeting may feel a higher sense of importance. This can bring about greater participation, with everyone staying off their phones & other devices.
Increased Focus & Concentration
When working away from the normal office environment, meeting participants are free to concentrate and focus. What happens when there’s a meeting at the office? There are typically many disruptions for phone calls, employees who need guidance and assistance, and more.
On the other hand, an offsite meeting is free of these and other disruptions and distractions. This means everyone has better focus and can concentrate more fully on the work at hand.
Improved Relationships & Communication
Offsite meetings are a great way to bring employees from different departments together. If the meeting is away from the office, everyone may feel they’re on more neutral territory. This has a specific effect on most employees.
Employees may feel more comfortable at a meeting away from the office. Everyone may feel more at ease, which can lead to better communication and bonding. This can lead to the meeting becoming more effective, as well as fostering better relations between the various company departments.
How to Plan an Offsite Meeting
There are a few things that need to be considered when planning an offsite meeting.
1). Meeting Cost
The first consideration is the cost of the offsite meeting. How much can the company afford to pay for a meeting space? This is the point where it’s necessary to determine the budget for the meeting. To plan the budget, you’ll need to review what is needed for the meeting.
For example, will it be necessary to serve refreshments? Are you planning on serving lunch? And what equipment will be needed for the offsite meeting? Will access to plasma screens, whiteboards, WiFi, and more be required?
Make a plan for the meeting, and then what is needed for catering services, equipment, and more. With a budget and a plan in place, it will be much easier to find an offsite meeting facility that meets your needs.
Once the budget’s in place, then it’s time to start searching for the right facility for the offsite meeting.
2). Meeting Goal & Outcome
Another important consideration is to set a clear goal and outcome for your offsite meeting. Having a clear goal makes it easier to get things done and accomplish the set outcome.
Thinking about these essential aspects of an offsite meeting make the investment meaningful, as well as justifiable.
3). Location & Access
Now it’s time to think about the meeting’s location. Offsite meetings are best held in a location that is near transportation hubs. These can include access to motorways, public transport, walking, and more.
The meeting location should also be in a centralised location. This makes it easy for most people to reach the meeting.
Next, consider the amount of parking needed. Parking should be nearby the offsite meeting, as well as free, if possible. Make sure the facility has plenty of parking for employees driving in for the meeting.
Offering a catering service throughout the meeting keeps everyone energised. You may think about serving beverages and snacks mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Another option is to include a catered lunch. This is a great way to keep everyone together and keep the meeting on schedule.
Choosing an Offsite Meeting Venue
Now you’re ready to start searching for the right offsite meeting venue. The goal is to find a meeting space that creates the right environment to achieve your meeting goals.
When the search begins, remember there are many types of meeting rooms available. All will be modern, but each meeting space will have its own “personality.” You can expect a beautifully decorated space that provides a backdrop of energy for a successful meeting. The goal is to find a meeting room that’s entirely different from your traditional onsite meeting room.
Offsite meeting venues come in a wide variety of colours, arrangements, decors, and more. Find the one that really works for you and your team. And focus on those facilities that fit the budget and the requirements for the meeting.
Offsite Meeting Checklist
Here’s a checklist to help you focus on the right types of offsite meeting rooms for your group:
- Keep your group small; the best meeting is between 5-10 people. This helps keep expenses down and focuses only on those who need to be at the meeting. Make sure each person will attend the offsite meeting.
- Create an agenda about a week in advance of the meeting, then send it out to meeting attendees. This way, everyone will know what’s being covered in advance.
- Ensure the meeting is fun and engaging. It may help to plan some group activities to get the creative juices and collaboration flowing.
- Make sure notes are taken at the meeting, which can then be sent to all attendees afterward.
- Create a list of actions that need to come out of the meeting. Share these with all attendees, along with specific instructions for each person at the meeting.
There you have it! An offsite meeting may be just what your employees need to become energised. An offsite meeting comes with many benefits and needs to have a plan in order to be successful. Remember to choose an offsite meeting room that works for you and your group.