15 Aug Creative Seating
Meetings, to some, are a necessary evil. To others, they are an opportunity to create an experience, broker a deal or change the course of a career. There is a certain way to stage a room that can encourage conversation, increase productivity or create home field advantage. In my previous career, I worked for a retail design firm. Before every presentation, we re-positioned the furniture in the room so that our client had the optimum experience and was positioned to our advantage.
Regardless if it’s a business meeting or a conference with multiple attendees, fresh ideas in seating arrangements and room layout are crucial to any meeting’s productivity.
Here are a few things to consider to give new life to business-focused events that are fun, productive and conducive to camaraderie:
1. Group dynamics are always important. It is vital that in any size of group it is understood how the group will be interacting. Consider the objective of the meeting and the people attending. Will there be break outs? Will food be served? Q&A for the speakers? Once the meeting purpose is clear, it is easier to match the layout to the attendees needs. Try multiple seating options like high tops or more intimate areas with comfortable seating such as small sofas or arm chairs.
2. Match seating arrangement to demographics and culture. Sometimes a great bean bag can be just the ticket to stimulate creativity and engagement in a group. Fun, unconventional seating can disarm attendees making the environment more comfortable and accepting for free flow thinking.
3. No fear! Don’t be afraid to change it up. The same room layout could net the same results. Instead of classroom seating try a three sided room set to create a better sense of engagement with the audience and the speaker. Use a mixture of round tables and café seating to give attendees options.
No matter the budget or locale also the attendees can get the maximum experience with the right room set up.