Run a Remote Meeting Outside
If you’re looking for a way to mix creativity, productivity and exercise, then an outdoor meeting is the thing for you.
After a long winter spent mostly indoors, you’re no doubt more than ready to spend as much time outside as possible. When it comes to business, heading outdoors for a meeting comes with unexpected benefits:
- More energy
- Less stress
- Increased creativity
For those of us who work in the outdoor industry, being in nature for meetings helps connect us to our own authenticity within this space. I’d take blue sky over blue light any day.
How to prep for an outdoor meeting:
- Chose the right type of meeting. OK, so a financial analysis isn’t going to be the right fit but anything creative or ‘big picture’ will. Perhaps you have a specific problem you need input on, or an idea you want to develop. These types of challenge-based meetings are perfect for an outdoor environment where you can take full advantage of external stimulus and don’t have to rely on a computer.
- Leave the laptops at home (but have your phone with you). A pad, pen and your phone should be all you need to take part. Your phone needs to have good signal so you can dial into your chosen meeting platform, be that Zoom, Whereby, Teams or Club House, and not lose connection. In other words, don’t go too far into the wild where you can’t be reached. Caves or underwater locations are, unfortunately, not a great option.
- Keep the structure tight. The best meetings have a distinct purpose and good time keeping. Focus on one area or challenge and make sure everyone is aware of the agenda, objectives and outcome well in advance. Nominate one facilitator to chair the meeting, keep charge of the flow and timing.
- Pick a location for yourself and ask your team to do the same. Planning where to go ahead of time is super important as you’ll need a base from which to work from. Look for locations that 1) have signal (very important) 2) somewhere to sit down comfortably 3) aren’t too exposed to the elements 4) where you won’t be too disturbed by passers-by. Everyone who’s taking part should do the same. Check-in with them a few days in advance to make sure as it could be make or break for the get-together.
- Have a plan B. Stuff happens. Crummy weather. Someone’s phone fell into the toilet. No one has any pens. Always, always have a plan B. More often than not, that means reverting to holding the meeting indoors. In that instance, you can still bring some elements of the outside in. For example, orientate an ice breaker around nature. If it’s not pouring down, ask everyone to head outside and notice one thing about a nearby tree. Or have everyone tell a one-minute story about the first memory they have of being outside.
- Log everything as soon as it’s over. With great ideas comes great responsibility to get those thoughts written down. Set aside time to go through what’s been said and what the key takeaways or actions are as soon as the meeting has finished. Referencing the meeting’s objectives and purpose is the easiest way to keep on track as you collate your notes. Share the doc with the team and ask for their input to make sure nothing gets missed.
If this How To has inspired you to take your next meeting outside, I’d love to see it in action. Tag me using @LetsGo_ThisWay #letsgothisway.