For us here at criterion conferences, the “Walk & Talk” started when my boss turned to me and said, let’s take our weekly meeting to the street! It was another busy day in the office; growing to-do lists, meetings after meetings and not to mention the tense hunched posture I felt my body moulded into that day.
It was a meeting revolution! Fresh air, flowing conversation, bright ideas and a more open catch-up about general weekly tasks and improvements and not to mention a good 30 minutes of exercise!
It didn’t stop there, as Senior Marketing Manager I help mentor and develop one of our Marketing Managers, the “Walk & Talk” has started taking us on a journey of self-realisation and development, setting an action plan each time to achieve these goals in a setting that provides more open, honest and I guess deeper conversation about future goals and aspirations in the workplace. A plan that has started to unfold quite nicely, and dare I say may have not been developed at such a rapid rate if we were to discuss this is a little white room!
I recently came across an article on Linkedin ”5 tips for Nonprofits to Host Effective Walking Meetings” by Beth Kanter, Trainer & Nonprofit Innovator in networks, learning and social media, recognised by Business Week, Fast & Co.
The article touches on the benefits of walking with colleagues to “generate a creative solution” and “boost relationship building and collaboration”. The 5 tips to integrate walking meetings in a nutshell include:
- Think about the different meeting we have with colleagues – the chances are they can all be reinvented as walking meetings – if you need internet, bring your phone!
- What are your goals? Get the creative juices flowing, relationship building, resolve conflict and speak more openly and honestly
- Give your colleagues some notice if you want to try this out – no one wants to walk for 30 minutes in 6 inch heels!
- It’s not just a walk on the beach, you are doing work – have a plan and action points, just like any other meeting – bring a pad, write some notes!
- Keep to time-frame and plan your route – set this in advance, know when to commence, discuss action pints and come to your conclusion and summarise your meeting.
So, do I recommend it? Absolutely! There is no reason not too, as a manager and mentor we are doing ourselves and the organisation a favour by mixing up the conventional way of meeting with colleagues by the surroundings present. Who knows, by literally stepping “outside the box” we may be instigating the next bright idea!