How many uninspiring workshops, offsites, or team get-togethers have you had to sit through?
These types of activities can have severe impacts on your engagement. It doesn’t inspire trust in those that are running the group activity. But at the end of the day, there is still a business that needs to be run.
Your first instinct might be to leave the company. It’s not always a bad idea. But if you’re committed to the cause, then there are other ways to stay engaged without competing with other work while people are speaking.
If you’re counting the seconds until your uninspiring workshop is over, try these tips on how you can get something out of it instead.
Listen for the Key Words During Uninspiring Workshops
While a lot of gibberish will get spewed during uninspiring workshops, if you are listening, you’ll begin to hear the same terms or phrases said over and over again.
Normally, there are two to three points the leadership team are trying to ram home. It could be around sales and acquisition, establishing marketing and branding, or retaining customers.
Listen for the words that are getting repeated. If you can make a drinking game out of it, then that should be your focus area for the company.
Establish a Starting Point
At team offsites or all-company meetings, there is often a slide or complete PowerPoint deck with every single number the company measures. This rundown is often a great time killer but is positioned as a way to pat everyone on the back.
What’s generally missing is what the plan is for the future. Where are we headed, and what do you need to do to get there?
Take note of the most important numbers in the slide or deck that focusses on the past. This now becomes your starting point. It’s your mission, should you choose to accept it, to improve those numbers for next year’s uninspiring workshops.
Bundle the Focus Areas
Just like there are multiple keywords, there are also several areas of focus. Instead of just saying that the company is focussed on the brand in the marketplace, they’ll dance around it for 30 minutes.
There will be multiple moments during uninspiring workshops. It’s up to you to bundle these segments into categories so that you can get a clear understanding of what the focus areas are.
Try to keep it to one or two word categories. Then develop your own gameplan on how you’ll contribute to the cause.
Make a List of People to Meet With After Uninspiring Workshops
Sometimes uninspiring workshops are the cause of people having an off day. It happens to all of us. Some people are also not great public speakers and find it difficult to talk in front of an audience.
Take note of who’s speaking during the workshop and who’s involved in various initiatives. Write down a list of questions so that you can meet with them one on one and get a clearer understanding of what the plan is as well as where the company is headed.
You’ll be respected for taking this initiative to learn more. They might even find a way to include you in the development and take on board your feedback on how future workshops can be more inspiring.
How to Get Inspired
There’s no way to get out of an uninspiring workshop. You’re expected to sit through the entire thing and pretend to listen no matter how mind-numbing the experience is. It’s a test of your leadership capability to learn how you can turn something uninspiring into something productive.
Take note of keywords, understand the position the company is currently in, and bundle focus areas. Then when it’s finally over, book in some appointments with key people to discuss one on one what the next steps are. While uninspiring workshops are out of your hands, your initiative is not.
If you need some inspiration as a leader, then make sure to follow the Better Boss Blog. You’ll find advice on how to create strategies as well as how to execute them successfully. Follow pwf services on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram for even more inspiring thoughts and ideas that will help you in your role.