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How to hold a successful workshop

Besides your usual marketing strategy, have you ever thought about alternative ways to drum up interest in your business? Holding a workshop to teach others your area of expertise could be just what you need to capture a new audience in your field, as well as meeting new people that could soon become colleagues.

workshop

A workshop is also a tool to help work towards a common goal within your business – to train people up in something you’re knowledgeable about, or get people to chip in ideas about a new project.

Here, Meet App give you a step-by-step instructions on how you can plan and hold your very own workshop – then reap the rewards of sharing your expertise with others.

Plan your day

First, define the goal of your workshop. Is it to get college kids interested in your apprenticeship program? Or teach your existing team some new skills?

Decide on your clear, simple aim, then write out a list of 5 activities, discussions and demonstrations you can do so that everyone can achieve that goal, no matter how advanced they are in your field.

Bad workshops end up being boring because they entail a lot of talking, sitting down and unengaging content. Plan a few fun activities like quizzes and puzzles, invite a guest-speaker, and make sure you include everyone present, so that the whole audience feels they got something out of your event.

Advertise and invite

Get the word out about your event. Social media is an amazing tool for this: put an exciting notice up on LinkedIn, local newspaper websites and Facebook community pages. It’s the fastest way to target people in your community, or those who might be interested.

If you know who to invite already, or you have received your allocated number of RSVPs, you can add them to MeetApp, an extremely useful management app for events that shows all your workshop participants their schedule for the day.

You can even add real-time polls during your workshop to gain feedback; share social media links with all in attendance and increase interaction with your activities. Diverse media makes workshops and events more exciting, and this app allows you to do that quickly and easily. Your audience will remember you for putting on a unique, interactive event.

Prepare

Before your workshop, write and practice the talks and speeches you plan to make, and get opinions on the activities you want to do. Are they engaging? Will they work with 30 people? Are the schedules and goals for the day clear?

It’s recommended that speeches should be limited to 20 minutes to prevent disengagement. Bite-sized tasks and quizzes to complete throughout the day based on the talks are a good idea to ensure people hang on your every word.

Remember how boring it was to sit and listen to a teacher talk for an hour? Don’t be that guy! Your workshop will be fun and entertaining for your audience if you make them active participants. Create PowerPoints, visual aids and handouts to accompany each task, along with your app-based interactivities.

Make sure that each activity is about 30 minutes long, or no more than 45 minutes, so that your participants don’t get bored by spending too long on the same task.

Get people involved

The point of this workshop is to get people interested in your business, subject or field. That won’t happen if they don’t participate with you.

Bear in mind that many people hate speaking in public, especially around people they don’t know. If your audience don’t know each other, split them into smaller groups to complete tasks so they are less daunted. Mix up people of different ages and backgrounds so that they can swap ideas and learn something new.

It’s your job to facilitate the discussions, get everyone working together, and most of all, incite interest in your business. Have fun, and don’t take the event too seriously!

More on staff management and motivating your staff here.

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