Your Meeting Opus


Meetings are music – a theatrical score crafted to thrill, captivate, and most of all, bring the audience along a wonderful journey of exploration and inspiration.  So how do we create a meeting exemplified by harmony, one that creates the “tunes” your audience will sing long after they leave, one that maintains their attention from curtain up to the final bow? It's all about engagement. 

Whether you are designing a PoA or launch meeting, it is important to think of the meeting as a musical narrative with a story arc that builds in content and format.  Many meetings find they don’t meet expectations or learning objectives simply because they could not keep the participants engaged.  Does this mean every moment of the meeting must be high energy, loud, flashy, and bold? No.  People cannot physically sustain high energy levels for the duration of a meeting.  As with music, the rests are as powerful as the notes because they provide an opportunity to refresh as well as a contrast that imbues even more energy to the notes. But it’s the strategic positioning and balance of high and low energy moments that ultimately keep the audience intrigued and wanting more.  

As shown in the graph below, your goal is to build a progressively increasing energy level punctuated by dips that allow the audience to refresh.  Each dip ends slightly higher than the prior one and each peak is slightly higher than the prior peak, creating an overall crescendo to the meeting.  As a result, the audience gets the mental and physical breaks they need while naturally and organically increasing in overall energy.

meeting crescendo-1.png

Typically, didactic presentations reduce the energy of the audience while full audience interaction raises the energy.  It should be noted though that “full audience interaction” does not mean simply asking a question that one or two people answer.  Though those two people might be engaged, the rest of the audience is essentially experiencing the same low-energy didactic lecture.  Activities that involve every single person in the audience raise the energy level of the room.   It is therefore critical that you design creative activities that get every participant involved, uses all their senses, and gets everyone talking and interacting with each other.  And then pull back, maybe with a heart-warming patient story or a clinical overview before allowing the energy to rise again.

Composers for thousands of years have refined the formula for the perfect symphony.  This is YOUR symphony – and if your meeting follows the basic principles of engagement, you will undoubtedly have your audience screaming “Encore!”


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