Successful Meetings - February 2008 - (Page 34)

Planner’s Workshop back at the home office. > Pre-Event Never confuse content with impact. Meeting content may evaporate on the way back to the airport, but residual impact problems can hang around and haunt you for months: People never forget (or forgive) lost luggage, misspelled name badges, singing “This Land Is Your Land” at eight in the morning, out-of-tune high school marching bands, projectors that don’t work, squealing sound systems, and abbreviated coffee breaks. Document and distribute. Videotape your speech. Have photos taken of yourself handing out awards. Get pictures into your company newsletter and intranet. Try for video clips in the employee newscast. Put photo blowups on your office wall and department bulletin board. If you’ve got the clout, videotape the whole meeting. Then edit and try for a senior management screening of selected excerpts. Don’t overlook the value of salesforce video verite: “Great! Best sales meeting we ever had!” Don’t get buried by graphics. Audiovisual types love assault-rifle graphic changes and special effects that convert your speech into a supporting soundtrack. Begin your presentation without any graphics at all. Make the audience concentrate on you for a few minutes. For extended periods between graphics (more than three minutes) turn the room lights back on. This change of pace and viewpoint keeps people awake. Fight hardware hypnosis. Video walls, laser lights, and hi-res TV projectors are often better for rental house profits than your presentation. Schedule enough time for equipment setups and rehearsals—particularly yours! Don’t get beaten by your own shtick. Be careful about wearing funny hats and/or appearing in self-deprecating skits. You may have corporate correction responsibilities that aren’t made any easier to enforce by playing Bozo the Clown. 10 12 Conduct follow-up evaluations. Send out e-mail questionnaires; invite letters; encourage phone calls; have field managers solicit comments. Feedback will flatter the people you ask, defuse gripes, and improve your next meeting. Circulate a response summary that makes you look good. Include a few complaints for credibility. Put your own spin on a meeting review for the company newsletter or website. Manage, don’t just facilitate. To get a sales meeting working for you, you have to work for it. It’s hands-on time! Don’t just delegate—coordinate, observe, or advise. You’ll lose control while someone else gains it. A final note: Banish guilt and celebrate self-interest. The additional time you spend making sure you look good will improve the meeting for everyone else. John K. Mackenzie, a self-employed business communications writer living in NYC, is a 35-year veteran of corporate conference room combat. To contact him, visit or email him at 14 15 13 11 Tools of the Trade BY VINCENT ALONZO AN AMENITY THAT FITS LIKE A GLOVE The physical stress from the twisting motion of the golf swing can cause longterm pain, and add to psychological stress from the excitement and competitiveness of the game. All told, it can limit an attendee’s enjoyment of a golf outing. The AccuGlove, by using the principles of accupressure and the fiveelement theory of Eastern medicine, alleviates the tension and stress generated during play. It can be imprinted with company, club, or organization name, logo, or crest, and makes the ideal pillow gift, tee prize, or tournament award. For more information, visit or call (212) 750-1076. SHOUT IT FROM THE MOUNTAIN TOPS Interactive Messaging Unlimited is a projection system produced by Pangolin, an Orlando-based software provider of laser display applications. It can receive and process incoming text messages and display them in public using video or lasers. A number of potential applications can benefit from laser-projected SMS text messages. Laser has the benefit of being unique (i.e. not everybody has a laser system, so laser images tend to be eye-catching) and it is scalable (i.e. laser displays may be only a few centimeters wide, or as wide as a mountain). For more information, visit or call (407) 299-2088. 34 FEBRUARY 2008 SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Successful Meetings - February 2008

Successful Meetings - February 2008
Editor's Note
Trade Shows
On the Record
Planner's Spotlight
Websites of the Month
Technology Talk
Personal Success
Food & Beverage
On Site
Tools of the Trade
The Rainbow Connection
The CVB in Your Backyard
Welcome to the Webolution
The Rail Deal
Spas with a Sense of Place
Places & Spaces
Mystic, CT.
Hong Kong
Florida’s East Coast
Atlantic City
Maui, Kauai, & Lanai

Successful Meetings - February 2008