When you are planning a business event, you want to make sure that employees attend. If employee attendance is low, that sends a negative message to company personnel. When a higher majority of employees participate in business events, then it will be easier to persuade the remaining personnel to attend. High employee attendance is advantageous to management because it provides the opportunity to share company ideals with everyone. Employees should be encouraged to actively participate in these events and bring new and creative ideas to the table. This article will address steps how management can persuade employees to attend business events.
Five Steps to Motivate Employees to Attend
1. Remove Scheduling Barriers and Inconveniences
If you want the maximum number of employees to attend your next business event, then you need to think carefully about how you can remove scheduling barriers and inconveniences. One of the major reasons that employees won’t attend an event is the excuse of scheduling conflicts and inconvenient venues. For example, many individuals consider their weekends as off limits for work-related events. They see Saturdays and Sundays as their “family time”. If the weekend is the only time you can schedule an event, then you need to. However, if you can schedule it for during the week, you most likely will increase your attendance. Host the event during the lunch hour or block off some time during the work day if possible. You can even host the event after work and provide dinner for all participants. Also take into consideration, when business is most busy for your company and then host the event during a more slower-paced time of the year. Remember that your goal is to find ways to entice your employees to attend the function.
2. Emphasize the Value in Attending
If you cannot emphasize the value in why your employees should plan to attend the business event, you will have a lower attendance rate. When you cultivate the idea of valuing company business events, you will cultivate the need amongst your employees to attend—simply because they have learned to care about the success of the company. Emphasizing the value in attending is a continual process and takes time. Another factor in creating this value is to give advance notice to your employees about the subject matter. Create a sense of urgency and excitement in the workplace. Provide a detailed agenda so that the employees are well-prepared to attend the event. You can find more tips in this article about creating an agenda for your business event.
3. Cultivate a Professional Workplace Culture
As mentioned in step 2, creating value is a continual process. In addition to persuading employees to value such business events, you also need to cultivate a professional workplace culture that thrives on management and personnel interaction—in an effective symbiotic relationship. Basically like with building blocks, you are using the success of one business event to build off of another and continue to grow together in your company. As employees are permitted to interact and bring their ideas and suggestions to the table, they will continue to grow with management. Cultivating this symbiotic attitude in the workplace will motivate employees to continue to attend business events. Be sure that you ask for an event review from the employees so that you can receive constructive feedback and know where management will need to improve in the future.
4. Provide Interactive Event Activities
In today’s culture, people are inundated with a wide variety of distractions vying for their attention. Don’t allow such distractions to disrupt your event. Create interactive activities that employees can participate in during the business event. These hands-on activities can build on the motivating factor of value and keep the employees focused on the information being disseminated during the event. The speaker should find ways to engage with the audience and ask questions and even bring a few participants up on the stage for demonstration purposes. You may even want to incorporate work exercises into the program where participants break up into small groups and can then more intimately engage in what they are learning. This will greatly increase the learning retention factor. Issue prizes to the team that completes their assignment first or the group that comes up with the most creative solution to the problem at hand. TeamBuilding.ie has a great listing of interactive business games that you can utilise at your next event.
5. Give Incentives to Attendees
This final step is just as important as the other four. You need to give incentives to attendees. Offering incentives basically seals the deal of the previous work you’ve been doing in removing barriers, adding value and cultivating the right professional culture. One option is to provide a door prize to one or a few different participants, depending on attendance and your resources. A second option is to provide food; whether a meal for lunch or dinner or simply refreshments. If you have t-shirts, coffee mugs, pens or anything else with your company logo on it, you can distribute those items to the participants. People love getting free stuff. It’s a motivating factor for the employees to attend future business events and you’ll receive free “walking advertising” when the items are used.
If you need to persuade your employees to attend a business event, following the five steps mentioned in this article will assist in the process. It is vital to remove all barriers and excuses for why an employee cannot attend. Remember to emphasise the value in attending and continually cultivate a professional workplace culture. It also helps to provide interactive event activities as well as incentives for employees to attend.