8 Easy Ways to Extend Post-Event Engagement

By Andrea Driessen, Chief Boredom Buster, No More Boring Meetings

Your last event was a resounding success—everyone returned to work energized, educated and ready to do their best work. Buzz around the “water cooler” was high for weeks.

Now what? How do you extend event engagement—long after the meeting? How do you get more “bang from your engagement buck”—without spending a lot more time, effort and….well….bucks?

With these easy, post-event engagement enhancers:

1. The Stories of Success

Meeting participants are exposed to a wide range of tools and ideas, with the assumption they will apply them at work. Yet even in a hyper-connected organization, the ways in which individuals and teams use concepts is often left unshared.

You can easily boost application of the learning by intentionally creating a forum in which employees may share their success stories. Employee success stories can be shared:

  • in an actual success story book
  • via printed and framed stories on a Wall of Fame
  • online and offline
  • verbally and in writing
  • during team meetings

Whatever mode you use, you readily give everyone the means to share what’s working for them (and what’s not). After all, success breeds more success—but only when shared openly.

2. Why not a Wiki?!A wiki is simply a knowledge base–Wikipedia is the most well-known example. Wikis are a natural way to build and share content among meeting attendees. Encourage participants to build their own wikis, before during and/or after an event, based on what they learn. Wikis deliver a two-fold benefit: ongoing learning AND more engagement. If you can use Microsoft Word, you can build a Wiki. Try – it’s free.

3. Meeting in a Box Post event, send attendees back to work with Meeting Engagement Extenders in a Box. Based on your industry and goals, these can include:

  • DVDs with a range of short trainings they can play during team meetings to extend concepts discussed at your larger event
  • Game shows and quizzes that test retention and build on core meeting education
  • Ask us for a customized Meeting in a Box for your team

4. The Gifts that Keep on Giving

Your fundraiser brought an entire community together to fiscally and emotionally support your mission. Now 1000s are benefiting from the gifted funds and resources. Keep that energy, buy-in and belief going with:

  • A phone tree in which every donor is thanked in real time within a day of the event
  • A handwritten thank you note from individual beneficiaries to individual donors, describing how they have been personally touched by the fundraising efforts. (naturally, keep clients’/recipients’ names anonymous, if needed)
  • An added line to donation cards, reading “My wish for this organization is _________. “ Using this input, create a word cloud or some other visual of all  wishes. This tree-like image can then become a vision for future fundraising efforts, a volunteer recruitment tool and a vibrant symbol of the value your organization’s efforts create in the community.

5. The Sound of Music Music and memory are natural partners. Somewhat freakishly, we can often remember an entire set of song lyrics…even from junior high. When your work force is faced with the need to memorize complex information—material that would normally be taught over the course of a longer meeting—set some of it to music.

  • Maybe people need to learn and memorize a brand promise, an organizational mission or a customer service strategy in the weeks after your event. Our Team will write and produce a custom-written song, and all the lyrics will feature your key content. The tune can be posted on an intranet as a downloadable song or MP3, or burned on a “[Your Company’s] Greatest Hits” CD, played at smaller departmental meetings, and/or sung into everyone’s voicemail to spread the word. This is extremely memorable, affordable and easy to execute. Get an entire work force to memorize a boatload of information in a short time, and extend the engagement long after the live event ends.

6. Read Best Sellers—and Foster Better Sellers!

Perhaps a well-known author has spoken at your event or sales kickoff. Boost revenue and keep buzz alive by starting a book club, so everyone is reading and discussing a book written by your headlining speaker. Increase learning and intimacy even more by integrating a 20-minute talk from your keynoter via www.TED.comthousands of topics and thought leaders are available here at no cost.

7. Open Up to Open Space

Open Space is a free, self-directed, scalable meeting format. You can integrate one into your live meeting, and/or at work after the meeting. Open a Space to this method of engagement, and you’ll generate an enormous amount of useful data, input, and ideas from any sized group.

8. Post-Program Pair-Up This format can be used immediately after speakers or trainers complete their programs at your live event.

  1. Have the audience: A. Find a partner. B. Discuss what goal you will each reach in the next 60 days that’s related to the just-delivered education–and, presumably, to your organizational mission. C. Record the goal—and each other’s contact information—on paper or in a PDA. D. Commit to supporting each other in reaching these goals in the next two months. E. If your audience is small, take everyone’s commitments to an even higher level: Invite everyone to the mic to state their goal with the whole group. After all, committing to a target in public means you’re all the more likely to meet it.

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