How do you improve staff meetings and even make them fun? Here are 3 necessary ingredients.
Change of Environment
Respect of Time
Let me give you an example of a fun all school faculty meeting.
As people entered there was a sign at the door transforming a library into a lounge and a "bouncer" checking IDs (name badges). The lights were down low, candles on the tables, and music playing in the background. To the left there was an "open bar" with mixed non alcoholic beverages being served along with meatballs, lil' smokies, bubble gum cigars, and other snacks. (creativity!)
The meeting began with the leader asking for people to share good things with the group. Applause was given after each person shared. The leader proceeded to follow the agenda verbatim pausing briefly for questions. People were honored and recognized and there was also a time of acknowledgment of hard-times and stressful situations. This acknowledgment of stresses was general enough as to not embarrass, yet specific enough for everyone to feel heard and appreciated.
After about 15 minutes the meeting came to a close (respectful of time). The overhead lights were completely turned off, music turned up, and the non alcoholic beverages were served. The library had a relaxing feel as that of a lounge (change of environment). People stayed for an extra 30 minutes or so to mingle and catch up while the leaders were serving snacks or talking to people. What a great meeting!
This meeting was surprising, exciting, and an interesting twist in the day while most meetings are mundane and simply not fun. As soon as you walk in the door it has the expectation of every other boring meeting. If you can't change your location then you need to change the feel of the environment.
If you want people to enjoy coming to meetings then you must make them enjoyable. How are you going to lead your next meeting?