Anyone who has hosted an event before notices a few dominant trends. One of those trends that can be somewhat problematic is that some attendees never speak up or feel fully engaged. Certainly, there are some attendees who feel very encouraged to add their thoughts, but how do you keep them from dominating the conversation and excluding other employees? After all, finding a way to foster an environment at your event where every employee and attendee feels valued and heard is of the utmost importance. There are different tips and tricks that can help build participant engagement at corporate events:
Events don’t have to begin on the day scheduled. One of the best ways to drum up excitement for an occasion is by creating a social media presence for it weeks in advance. By creating and advertising an event hashtag around the office and workplace, you can get employees to add their thoughts and opinions about an event before it happens. On top of that, a hashtag or social media challenge gives more timid employees an arena to voice their opinions that feels less confrontational. They may feel more secure in adding a suggestion because they are given an equal platform online than they feel they are in a larger social setting. It’s important to remember however that hashtags must be maintained and curated as the event happens and even after it ends. Businesses can gain valuable insights about all stages of an occasion from planning to post-event wrap-up.
Break it Up
Large groups can be intimidating to even the most confident of attendees. One of the easiest ways to alleviate this struggle is to create break-out groups that can create a better balance among employees at a corporate event. Sometimes when structuring smaller groups, people feel that their ideas and comments have more value. Creating collaborative groups can inspire creativity even amongst the shyest of employees. By getting together in small groups you can encourage diverse thinking and interaction. These groups can either be pre-assigned or formed on the spot. But the value of putting people in small groups and reporting back to the larger company can create innovative solutions to problems that can be applied long after the event ends.
Round it Out
One of the easiest ways to increase engagement is by setting the right stage for participation. This is a structural issue that is an easy fix. Round tables take away the dynamics of hierarchies of corporate events. When everyone feels like they are on an equal footing, they are more likely to participate and offer their expertise to the group. Structure your catering services in a buffet style so that people will interact with other people at the event. Social interactions breed ideas that can truly make any event a valuable way to spend time on a business and its employees.
Increasing participant engagement at corporate events is a win-win for everybody involved. Employees feel valued and heard, while executives get to hear ideas that they would never hear in a normal working environment. Put simply: the more people say at an event, the better impact it has on a company’s bottom line for the year.