Don’t Let Takeaways Get Away

Executive coaching firm Building Champions tackles a common problem: attendees whose personal and professional lives are moving so fast that they have a hard time absorbing the new ideas they encounter meetings.

At meetings, notes taken with great enthusiasm and the best of intentions end up tucked into files, and then … nothing. 

There’s even a name for it: The Law of Diminishing Intent — the longer you wait to implement an idea, the less enthusiasm you will have for it. 

Building Champions CEO Daniel Harkavy has hit on a way to interrupt that pattern: last fall, a few weeks after the World Business Forum, Harkavy conducted a post-conference coaching call for attendees. In 45 minutes, he pared down two days of information to a succinct list of takeaways, with concrete suggestions on how to put ideas into action. 
PCMA’s Christine Melendes

Over the last weeks, Christine Melendes, CAE, PCMA’s director of member relations, has  been guest blogging about her experience at the second annual Event Camp National Conference,  held in Chicago February 11-13. Today, Christine also is acting as “guest executive coach,” stirring up the pot, and sharing her list of takeaways from the meeting. Here’s her list of standout points:

Hybrid Events
* Nobody has all the answers.  Find a technology partner that you feel comfortable working with and put together a program that fits the needs of your organization. 
* Bring in more people to work on the virtual end than you think you’ll need – because you’ll need them.
* Adding a camera facing the audience will help the virtual audience get a better sense of what it feels like to be at the meeting, interacting with F2F attendees
* Adequately communicate the link needed to join online in advance. Make sure you help people get to the party.
* Build your event with a virtual audience in mind.
* Give the virtual audience tasks that keep them engaged
* Be authentic when interacting with virtual audience – don’t use a script

* Concentrate on the people who already are your fans  – start letting them help tell your story
* Develop relationships built on trust
* If you are in sales, don’t push a sale before a relationship is formed – it’s insulting to everyone
* Change the way you see relationships – relating is an attitude and an action. Use relationships to build your connections, your caring, and your community.
* Open up listening labs to learn how to serve our customers/members
* Loyalty is a relationship.  Campaigns may make sales, but community-building makes long-term relationships
* Look at how to keep the stragglers and lonely people going/moving/engaged — find a  community solution
* Take photos of everyone – everyone wants to see photos of themselves
* Attendees want to feel special – TALK TO THEM
* Require speakers to hang out with sponsors so they get entrenched and embedded within your event
* Integrate the “local” into your events
In general
* Pursue progress, not perfection
* Speak with substance, sizzle, and soul. Ask yourself: What will you make happen going forward (that’s the substance). How will you make it happen (sizzle)? Why is it important to you (soul)?
* Make desire more important than fear
* Connect people to people with the solutions they are looking for
* You want to be with people who are like you!
* Come out from behind the curtain (from out of your office, out of your website) – bring yourself online to meet the people online; meet the people offline – we need both!
Says Christine: “Attending EventCamp this year for my first time was a joy and recharge of my batteries.  If you want to continue the conversation you can find me on Twitter: @camelendes.”

Barbara Palmer

Barbara Palmer is senior editor and director of digital content.