Workshops are a necessary evil in the small business workplace.
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In the long run, the time and expense associated with workshops are a good investment. But in the short term, the disruption they cause can sometimes be a hard pill to swallow.
Wouldn't it be great if you could schedule a workshop without completely upsetting your company's daily routine?
Maybe you can. Some small business owners have found that by combining a workshop with a working lunch they can minimize disruptions and still get the added value a quality workshop can provide.
Some workshops don't lend themselves to a lunchtime format, but here are five suggestions of ones that do.
Preventative Health Workshops
It goes without saying that healthy employees are good employees. You can help maintain the health of your labor force by offering periodic preventative health workshops on topics like stress management, exercise, and diet. If your employees bring their own lunches, the workshop leader may even be able to review their food choices and offer suggestions for some healthier alternatives.
Time Management Workshop
Most workplaces are filled with employees who consistently face a time crunch. Although a workshop won't create more hours in a day, a skilled time management workshop leader can provide tips that help your employees prioritize their tasks and get everything done on schedule. And hey, can you think of a better way to model multitasking than by hosting a working lunch?
Product suppliers and manufacturer reps love to talk. From time to time, it's actually necessary for them to update your employees about the new products and supplies they encounter everyday in the workplace. Why not invite them to talk to your employees over lunch? Even better, you might be able to talk the vendor rep into springing for a catered lunch for the whole office.
Motivational workshops can sometimes be awkward experiences for employees. For starters, no one really knows what to expect. Add to that the anxiety associated with exposing yourself in front of your coworkers and you have a potential disaster on your hands. But for some reason, sharing a meal has a way of easing peoples' anxieties and making an uncomfortable situation much more bearable - a perfect fit for a working workshop lunch. As an added incentive for participation, you might want to consider buying lunch for your staff on the day of the workshop.
New Employee Meet & Greets
Okay, a meet & greet isn't necessarily the same thing as a workshop, but it's close! On their first day on the job, new employees are easily overwhelmed with all the new things to have to learn. New routines, new policies, new names. A meet & greet lunch gives both new and existing employees the chance to learn about one another in a more casual setting. Combine it with nametags and you have a working lunch your employees will remember for weeks to come.