Corporate Offsite Meetings

A corporate offsite meeting can be thought of as an extension of the company’s office environment where the company’s vision, mission and values occupy the foremost place. Within the broader context of this corporate culture, the offsite must be separate from the traditional office environment since one of its chief purposes is to allow the employees to be their natural selves and let go of their day-to-day worries, in order to accomplish one or more joint goals.

You should always consider making a point to have a zoom cocktail hour (relevant to times); spending a little non-working-hours time together can do wonders for morale and communications.

Corporate Offsite Meetings in “The New Normal”

Many businesses have a significantly higher percentage of employees working from home, in the wake of the COVID-19 epidemic.  Although employees working remotely may be “The New Normal” in one sense, it’s still important to get employees together when possible in order to foster a sense of unity, transmit the shared values of the organization, and facilitate employees making informal contacts outside of their normal chain of command – much “real work” happens through these informal networks and it’s important to allow those to flourish.

Team Building Activities

There are a number of different kinds of activities that you can use to organize these events. Some include: team building, fun games, presentations, scavenger hunts, competitions and more. All of these will allow your employees to bond and enjoy each other’s company while at the same time gain new skills that they can use to enhance their ability to perform at work. As these skills are developed, the employees will become better workers and will feel that they are doing something that is important in their field of endeavor.

Corporate events are a great way to bring in new employees and build a better connection between the current employees and the ones that are on their way in. They also serve as a great way to motivate the current employees to continue working harder. With a successful event, you are sure to get the most out of all of your employees and get the best results for your business.

Corporate offsite activities are also often a time to thank the employees that do not come to work everyday and say that they appreciate them. 

Corporate Offsite Agenda Topics

When choosing corporate offsite meeting topics, it’s very important that you pick topics that are of high interest to your audience.  Things to consider when selecting topics include:

Audience: Is the audience for your topic a broad or a specific group? Will the audience have some level of expertise with the products or services that your organization provides? This is also important because some of the topics may not be suitable for a broad audience but for a specific audience.

Speakers: You want someone who is comfortable speaking about the products and services that your organization offers and not someone who is afraid to speak his or her mind.  Consider bringing in an outside speaker; neutral third parties who bring additional perspective can provide valuable feedback and credibility, particularly when the meeting has to do with change.

Offsite Corporate Team Building Ideas

If you’re a business leader or manager, team brainstorming can often become an integral part of your daily tasks. Whether it’s to plan an entire event, or just a series of one-off activities, this type of activity can be incredibly beneficial.

Team brainstorming is a way to share ideas and information with a wide variety of people in a short space of time. This is particularly useful in an environment where the team members are separated by geographic and/or time constraints. By taking the time to organise a group activity, you can get all of your team members involved, as well as having fun at the same time!

However, it’s important to remember that brainstorming isn’t just for those who need a break. These activities are ideal for both small teams and large teams alike and can help everyone to get to know each other better.

So why should you have your team participating in brainstorming activities? Here are just some of the benefits:

The Benefits of Brainstorming With Others: There’s little doubt that brainstorming with others helps to improve your team’s communication skills. This helps to ensure that everyone has a better understanding of the company goals, aims and objectives. You can also use brainstorming activities to get feedback on what you’ve done, as well as asking for ideas. This can make your team more effective, which in turn will help you to reach more goals.

Your Team Becomes More Effective: In order to improve your team, you have to ensure that they are given all the training that they need. By giving them the opportunity to brainstorm on their own, this will help them to become more creative and problem-solve.

When you give your team the opportunity to brainstorm, they will learn more about how to communicate and work together. This will also provide them with a better understanding of their roles within the whole team, helping them to achieve more goals in less time.

It’s Easy to organize Brainstorming Activities: When you’re using team brainstorming activities, you don’t have to hire expensive facilitators or hold hours. Instead, you can simply use whatever works best for you.

In order to improve your team and make them more effective, you need to give them the opportunity to perform group activities. These activities can include activities that allow people to communicate, as well as activities that allow them to solve problems together.

Brainstorming at the next level

If you want to take your brainstorming to the next level, you can make use of some brainstorming tools. These can include things like storyboards, role-play games and even games that allow your team to solve problems and build up their confidence.

Storyboards are a great way to make sure that your team gets into the ‘brain storm’ and brainstorm together. As you’ll find out, this is a great way to create a shared idea. from the different ideas that they have come up with.

Role-playing games can also help your team to be more creative, and problem-solve, allowing them to use their imagination and problem solving skills to work out what is causing problems for the team and what can be done to overcome these problems. They also allow your team to learn the basics of brainstorming.

Finally, games like the ones mentioned above can be used as a fun way for your team to meet and interact. It’s a great way to encourage team building, allowing your team to be creative and problem-solve, as well as creating bonds between team members and increasing trust between team members.

How to Run a Remote Training Session and Make it Interesting

how to run a remote training sessionWe believe that meeting together in a group setting is the best way to achieve your goals.  It allows speakers to capture the attention of the audience, and provides attendees to have in-person interactions, which is a great way to form relationships.  With this being said, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are seeing virtual meetings taking place instead of face-to-face. We are professionals serving professionals, and wanted to provide you with ideas to run a remote training during this time:

First, Select some Remote Software

Zoom is an ideal system for businesses of all sizes, because it gives your staff a variety of different meeting options. Zoom enables the smooth running of meetings and enables your staff to focus on other things. In addition, it allows you to control the length of the meeting, so that it is only 30 minutes long, or it can go on as long as you wish. 

Google Hangouts is also considered a great system for remote meetings – it’s reliable, easy to use – and best of all, it’s free (!).

Then, Compose Your Training

When you are ready to get into the training process then it is important to consider what material you will be using. One option is to consider using slideshows as you prepare for your first training conference. Make sure you have a good number of slides to include in your presentation.

If you find the presentation is not working well, consider reducing the size of the presentation or breaking it up into chunks.

Once you find out what type of presentation you are going to give, then you will be able to plan your training meetings more effectively. You will be able to focus on creating learning material for your employees and less on trying to entertain the staff.

Spice Up Your Training

When you start working on planning your remote training, you need to give some thought on how to make your training interesting and engaging. You can do this by brainstorming ideas for learning materials. For instance, have you ever thought of augmenting the training using a few YouTube videos? You may be surprised with the number of interesting videos you will be able to leverage.

Take into Account the Different Types of Learners

Make sure that you create training materials that are available for an individual to download for easy viewing.  Remember that some people are “visual/spatial” learners while others are “auditory” learners – in the ideal world, you should put together a training caters to both types of learners.

Incorporate a Q&A time, or Multiple Q&A times

Having a defined Q&A section limits interruptions; people can hold their questions until the Q&A portion of the meeting.  Also by having a Q&A time, it encourages people to think about what they have learned and to try to come up with interesting questions.

During the Training, Have Everyone Show Themselves on Video

This will have several effects; first of all, if everyone knows they are on video, they will pay closer attention (and not try to get household chores done during the training for instance).  Secondly, if people have questions it can be helpful to see their body language in addition to what they are saying.  Participants can also use the opportunity to develop a rapport with the other participants.  Just make sure everyone holds questions until certain points of course, to keep training from devolving into chaos.

Don’t Forget to Record the Training

Finally, by running a Zoom Meeting, your meeting can be recorded, so that you can review the entirety of the meeting and review the recording. You can do this at any time and use the recording to replay portions of the meeting for future reference; for instance, if an employee missed the training, or if you are onboarding a new employee, they can just watch the training after the fact.

Conclusion

In conclusion, in-person meetings foster an invaluable environment, and we look forward to serving you again in the future.  Until then, it is our hope that you will continue meeting together as a group to engage, learn, and grow.

Conference Room Booking: Scheduling Conference Rooms With Us is Easy

Conference room booking doesn’t have to be difficult. Forefront Center for Meetings & Conferences makes it easy to schedule a meeting, seminar, corporate training, or conference in the Boston area.

Facilities
Forefront Center is a sophisticated business facility that provides a professional, confident environment for conferences and meetings. Whether you need multiple rooms, one large room, or various seating arrangements, just let our helpful conference coordinators know when you’re scheduling your reservation for a conference room booking. Rooming options are customizable to meet the needs of any organization and all seating is ergonomically-designed for comfort. Guests will also enjoy complimentary garage parking and business services such as concierge, faxing, and photocopying.

Technology
When you schedule a conference room booking, it’s important to make sure you’ll have all of the equipment necessary to facilitate your event. Forefront Center has high-quality, easy to use technology to meet your needs. Planning a presentation? You’ll find high-lumen projectors, LAN-connected DVD, VHS, and laptop video sources, and high-resolution screens and monitors. Giving a speech? Take advantage of wireless microphones and high-fidelity speakers. Scheduling a training session? Don’t worry – you’ll have high-speed T-1 wireless internet access, touchpad controls, and even flip charts and white boards for non-tech teaching. There’s also an internet laptop counter and touchdown booths for participants to use during downtime.

Customer Service
The best part about scheduling a conference at our Forefront Center locations is our highly-trained, dedicated staff. When booking and planning your meeting you’ll have access to a conference coordinator who will help make sure everything is in place on the day of the event. There are also on-site AV technicians who can help with any of the presentation equipment. Whether you have a question about the menu, a concern about lighting, or an issue with your laptop, our staff is available to help make the day go exactly as planned.

Check your calendars and get your next conference on the books. Make a reservation at Forefront Center for Meetings & Conferences today.

Meeting Rooms in Boston

Meeting rooms Boston-area businesses utilize can be located both in the city itself, but also conveniently accessible just outside the city. One of the great things about Boston is that so many facilities in and around the city are available, including meeting rooms. Many companies know, or are becoming more and more aware, how helpful it is becoming in today’s market to access such facilities. 

Rather than use up space in their own Massachusetts-area offices, many businesses are turning to meeting rooms in Boston area locations. The cost of these, compared to that of having a dedicated area located in your own facilities, is miniscule. The other major positive is the great impression that it provides to customers. A busy office rarely has the space to dedicate to such facilities in house, let alone the time. So, how does one go about it? The simple answer is to type ‘meeting rooms boston’ into a search engine and you’ll be astounded at just how many pop up.

A quick visit to the venue to have a look around, and a discussion with their staff about the rooms and facilities provided, will soon set your mind at ease. Ideally, the venue should post numerous photographs of different meeting rooms in its facility that are available, so you can peruse them at your leisure even without visiting their location.

Advantages of Meeting Rooms outside the Downtown Boston Area

There are a variety of important things to check for when selecting meeting rooms Boston area business should consider. There are many advantages to selecting a meeting room facility in the suburbs – the “greater Boston” area – rather than in downtown Boston:

  • Easy Access – Whenever possible, you should select a location close to one of the areas many freeways.
  • Free Parking – Second, you will want to ensure there are plenty of complementary parking spaces available. Second, you will want to ensure there are plenty of parking spaces available. The last thing you need is to find out if your meeting conflicts with another of Boston’s thriving business community because limited parking spaces could mean attendees wasting time looking for a space.
  • Fewer Distractions – Placing a meeting or conference well outside the downtown area makes it less likely that you’ll lose attendees…to the wide variety of interesting activities that downtown Boston offers (!). A suburban location can help keep the meeting on track and on time.

All you need to do after having arranged the rooms is to collect your presentation material and make your way to the venue. Our staff will provide for your needs, even down to refreshments. You just need to set up for the meeting in the room itself and then greet your attendees.

Comfort is a Must for a Successful Meeting

Providing your presentation in a comfortable meeting room is paramount to having the customer relaxed and responsive. It’s also important to have comfortable chairs in the room, not those cheap plastic ones which can easily make the customer irritable, particularly if they’ve traveled a long way. Forefront Center for Meetings & Conferences is a founding member of the International Association of Conference Centers (IACC), and adheres to its rigorous quality standards, including those for chairs:

“The North American Chapter also requires that chairs have arms, that they swivel and tilt synchronously and allow height adjustment. Chairs have a rounded or waterfall edge on the front of the seat pan. Chair seats have a minimum width of .46 metre or 18 inches, a minimum depth of .4 metre or 16 inches and seat height adjustable within at least 7.5 centimetres or 3 inches of the range between .38 and .53 metre (15 – 21 inches). The seat and inside back of the chair are fully upholstered or constructed of Pellicle® or like material. The arms and outside back of the chair are fully upholstered or constructed of ABS molded plastic or of Pellicle® or like material. The base of the chair has five-prong design with casters.”

Source: IACC

Additionally, state of the art audio/visual equipment is available, and videoconferencing can be arranged upon request as well.

All-Inclusive Packages Help You Avoid “Nickel and Diming”

Many venues will charge extra for things like parking, A/V equipment rental, and the like.  Forefront Center for Meetings & Conferences offers all-inclusive packages so that you won’t get hit with surprise charges after your meeting concludes (!).  We strive to be “One-Stop-Shopping” for your meeting needs.

Options for Winding Up Your Meeting

When your event nears completion, why not treat attendees to the sights of Boston? Show them what a great and historic place the area is. Convenient nearby shopping at the Patriot Place Mall and Wrentham Factory Outlets make it easy for your meeting attendees, should they require any last-minute purchases. There are also excellent bars and restaurants nearby where you can sit back and get to know your client and really build customer relationships.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the rewards that internet search for ‘meeting rooms boston’ will provide. And we all know that a happy customer is a profitable customer!

Meeting Conference Planning – How to Plan a Meeting

Meeting conference planning can be, many think, a daunting task, but in fact, it’s relatively simple and when you’ve completed your first one, you then have a template for arranging many more successful meetings.

Have a Meeting Agenda

Providing an agenda in advance, along with references to read through and consider prior to 
attendance, is extremely beneficial. It allows the participants to read up on the issues being raised, consider any concerns and research them enough to provide the answers themselves for when they bring them up at the meeting in due course.

Think about Logistics

Meeting conference planning takes great preparation; after all, planning is paramount to any successful event. With pre-planning done, and having provided maps and addresses so that they can find your meeting easily, your attendees should be able to arrive on time, so your meeting can be off to a successful start.

It may well be that the meeting participants will be planning to come by car. If so, you need to ensure that the venue is easy to find and that there is adequate parking. We all know what it can be like trying to find parking in a crowded location – the last thing you want are fraught participants.

Choose the Right Facilities

Planning the facilities you need for the meeting is paramount. For instance, if it’s a training program that you’re delivering when meeting conference planning, you may need to ensure that state of the art audio visual equipment is available, including overhead projectors, wireless microphones and Wi-Fi. Other considerations are high resolution LCDs and laptop video sources and high speed internet access.

Plan Ahead for Teleconference Needs

Another thing to consider when meeting conference planning is whether you will need telephone conferencing facilities, and whether that includes a live satellite feed. It may well be that a senior member of the company may want to provide an input at the meeting and be unable to attend. Also, the last thing you want is problems with telecommunications. During your planning, ensure the providers have technical staff available throughout your meetings to deal with any issues that might occur and to anticipate any possible risks.

Get the Right Sized Room

The meeting room size should be appropriate to the number of attendees – whether it’s a group of six to eight people, or well over a hundred participants.  A room that is too large can feel imposing, while one that is too small can really ruin the whole meeting experience.

Don’t Forget the Food!

Then of course there are the refreshments. The venue management will provide these by prior arrangement, to suit your needs, as well as when you want them. This can be anything from a continental style breakfast, to tea and coffee and even a working lunch.  Ideally, a facility should be able to provide continuous breaks in the morning and afternoon.  In addition, conference dining facilities should ideally be comparable to a first class restaurant facility onsite – without any prior arrangement necessary, or the need to select a menu.  Poor food can drive attendees elsewhere for lunch – resulting in a meeting that is late to restart in the afternoon.  A reputation for excellent food is an important element in keeping meeting attendees “anchored” at the meeting location.