When planning a meeting, having a Plan B is not something we always think about. We’re normally just so excited to have Plan A wrapped up and ready to go that we completely forget about “What happens if Plan A fails?” I’m here to tell you that having a plan B is a MUST! I’ve had lots of experience in dealing with common meeting problems, not only from the meetings I see here at sparkspace, but also my own mishaps.
The top 2 issues that can disrupt any well planned meeting:
This is something we see pretty often here at sparkspace: the unplanned guest. Leadership or management showing up unexpectedly, invitees that did not RSVP, or the attendee that invited another co-worker. This can present a problem with room setups, meals, printed documents, team exercises, breakouts, etc.
Plan B Suggestion: Well, there’s really only one way to have a backup plan for extra guests, and that’s being prepared. ALWAYS have extra copies printed, extra materials, and a few extra seats available. As for meals, if you’re doing boxed lunches make sure your facility is able to order extra meals last minute. If you’re doing a larger buffet-style meal, you should be fine with last minute additions. Having a trusted facility that can help you resolve issues in meetings, like extra add-ons and meals, can also be a great Plan B.
Definitely the #1 issue that pops up during meetings. This interrupts your entire meeting, and sometimes it’s out of your control. You lose internet connection, your video conferencing is a bust, or your powerpoint will not open.
First and foremost, plan on getting to your facility early! This is the best way to ensure Plan A will go smoothly.
Plan B Suggestion: When you are using technology there’s always a chance of something going wrong, so why not be prepared? If you are using video conferencing, always make sure you have a conference phone setup as well. In case something is not working, or the wifi fails, you at least have audio to finish the meeting. If you are using powerpoint, make sure you also have a copy of your presentation on a zip drive. If your powerpoint isn’t opening or you lose internet access you’ll still have a copy of your presentation that can either be transferred to another computer or printed. Alternatively, why not think about using outsourced it services to lessen the chances of any of these problems cropping up whilst you try and hold a meeting. Services like these will be able to help your company, not just with issues during conferences, but with a number of things (such as cloud computing for example) to make your business run smoother on a daily basis.
Always think ahead.
Something could always go wrong. It’s not the problem your team will remember, it’s how the issue was handled that matters.
We could easily avoid many of the meeting mishaps by being prepared, showing up early, and always having a Plan B. In many instances just knowing things can go wrong, and having a plan when they do go wrong will eliminate worry, panic, and lengthy disruptions.
Here are some more tips that could assist with your Plan B planning: