Hosting staff events is a superb way to re-energise your work force and provide that much needed motivational life to enhance productivity.
However, often business leaders pin much hope on these types of events and find they fall short of providing that sustainable impact they were really looking for. Is it possible to get better results from these types of company events? What might need to change to boost the level of employee engagement during the event?
Rest assured, there are some simple improvements you can make which will elevate staff engagement both during and after your event.
Before you even begin planning the content of your event, you’ll need to get really clear about what it is you are actually looking to achieve, in terms of tangible outcomes or results. What is your ideal outcome? How do you want your staff to feel both during and after the event? What positive action would you like your staff to take as a result of the event? What changes would you like your employees to make after the event?
Perhaps you’d just like them to feel refreshed or maybe you’d like them to be more open to change or more motivated to hit their targets. Whatever your outcomes are, these will lay the framework for what you need to include in order to achieve those outcomes.
Outside the Box
A great way to lift, motivate and inspire your people, is to provide something a bit different…something unexpected.
Spend some time researching possible options that are likely to achieve your outcome. For example, research potential business speakers who can cover topics relevant to your outcomes i.e. change management, inspiration, improved mindset etc.
Once you have some ideas and thoughts about what you want to achieve, and you’ve whittled down some of the possible content options, themes etc, it can be a great idea to put these to a vote from your staff.
Alternatively, you can utilise them for the ideas in the first place!
Be transparent, ensure they know what the purpose of the event is and what they think will most achieve this for them.
Have a Laugh
Regardless of how serious your objective is i.e. improving business results, if your event is all work and no play, your employee engagement will plummet rather than soar. As mentioned, when defining your results – how do you want your staff to feel during and after the event? What will most make them feel that emotion? Motivated? Inspired? Uplifted? Refreshed?
These are all positive emotions and a great way to access these positive states is through laughter, so ensure at least one element of your event ignites some light-hearted fun and if you can get them to belly laugh…even better!
Another key to the achieving your outcomes and the overall effectiveness of your company event, is ultimately ensuring the structure of the whole event is well balanced and flowing.
Take time to consider how one part flows into the next. If topics are so vastly different and don’t flow, how can you bridge the gap? Do you need to change the content to do this or simply insert something in between?
An ideal scenario would be to gradually build positive emotion states throughout the event and finish on a huge high.
The final piece of your event puzzle needs to include some kind of personal investment from your employees. A call to action.
What do they pledge to do differently going forward? What are have they learnt from the event? What new goals would like to achieve? What might stop them from achieving these goals? What could they do if that were to occur?
By facilitating this opportunity for self-refection in your staff, you are allowing them to access and harness their own personal investment and commitment in your company. You’re not simply telling them what you want them to do after this event, you’re inviting them to work out what they can do. When something comes from us, we’re far more likely to follow through with action.