If your association’s staff meetings or trainings are getting a little stale, perhaps you should consider taking them offsite for a unique experience.
Most associations spend all year planning conferences and meetings for their members and industry partners. They’re often held in beautiful venues in different cities, and the learning opportunities are punctuated by great food and interesting experiences.
But, what about the meetings and trainings for their own staff? Important organizational vision-casting occurs at these meetings, as does communication on crucial topics, ranging from office safety to sexual harassment. But, oftentimes, these staff meetings fall flat. They’re unmemorable, not because the information communicated isn’t important, but because the meeting itself is boring. A change of scenery could help with that.
More organizations are moving important staff meetings offsite for a couple of reasons, according to Chloe Day, enterprise sales manager at Splacer, a platform that enables companies and individuals to book unique meeting and event spaces. Here’s a look a two reasons why companies are moving their internal staff meetings outside the office:
An offsite meeting cements the experience. Try to recall your association’s last staff meeting. Does anything stick out, or does it run together with all the other staff meetings? If it’s the latter, an offsite meeting might be the solution for a standout meeting. Simply being out of the office and in a unique space makes the meeting or training more memorable, plus associations can get creative about adding elements, such as a collaborative graffiti artist, that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to accommodate in-house. “It cements the event and everything that happened during that event or training in their minds as a unique experience, which I think is more impactful,” Day said.
An offsite meeting can accommodate every staffer. More practically, associations can also comfortably fit their staffs into one space at an offsite venue. “It’s a little bit challenging to get everyone in the company, especially depending on the size of your company, in one space, so even if you are doing an all-hands-on-deck meeting, you can often end up with people lining the walls, or being squeezed out of the room,” Day said. Plus, as companies are decreasing their office space square footage to save money or accommodate remote employees, hosting offsite meetings eliminates the need for having big boardrooms in-house.
Even better, offsite spaces don’t have to break the bank. Although associations can charter buses and transport staff to venues, such as restaurants or even abandoned yachts, they can also encourage their staffs to just walk a couple of blocks to venues, such as artist lofts or photo shoot venues, for a much lower price point.
What are your thoughts on hosting staff meetings offsite? Has your association found success in doing so? Tell us about it in the comments.