Posts Tagged 'laptop rentals'

Staying on Budget When Planning Your Meeting

Staying on Budget When Planning Your Meeting When you’re in charge of planning a meeting, staying within your budget is probably one of your biggest worries, but it shouldn’t have to be.  With a little extra effort, staying within budget can be the easiest part of meeting planning.   Here are a few tips  to help you out with the financial aspect, so that you can spend more time and effort on the important parts of your meeting.

1.  Make sure you know your budget.  If you know your exact limits verses a guess or estimate, you are more likely to stick to it. 

2.  Stay organized.  This one seems simple, but before you even begin the planning process, make a list of items you’ll need to pay for.  These might include transportation, entertainment, refreshments, technology rentals, accommodations if your meeting will involve out-of-town guests, renting a location if it won’t be at your office, and more.  Figure out how much of your budget you can afford to assign to each aspect and try to leave a little extra room in case something comes up.  

3.  Be flexible.  If you have specific expectations about dates and locations, you may find yourself having to shell out a little extra money to pay for those expectations.  Some places, such as hotels, might give discounts if you’re not 100% set on a date. 

4.  Have a back-up plan.  Something can always go wrong when you’re planning a big meeting.  Consider the possibilities and decide what you can do in the event of an emergency.  Not having a back-up plan could result in spending tons of extra, unnecessary cash. 

5.  Rent any necessary technology.  In today’s world, technology is king, and any successful meeting requires at the bare minimum a projector.  Renting a projector is a great alternative to purchasing one when you’re trying to stay within a budget.  You’ll pay a small fraction of what you would when you purchase a new projector and you can rent it for as long as you need.  Many meeting planners also rent laptops so that each meeting attendee can use one to access websites, take notes, and perform other tasks related to the meeting.

Start Your Meetings on Time

Start Your Meetings on TimeNo one likes a meeting that doesn’t start on time.  Most of the time, a meeting that starts late means a meeting that finishes late and it can eat up important productivity time and even affect when you and your employees are able to go home.   There are so many ways to prevent your meeting from starting later than scheduled.  After following these tips, you won’t have any excuse to ever start a meeting at the wrong time again!

1.  Make sure everyone involved with the meeting knows when it starts.  Also, make sure everyone knows you mean business.  State that your meeting will begin promptly at that time and that no excuses for tardiness will be accepted.

2.  If possible, remind everyone the morning of or shortly before the meeting.  Send out a group email or put a flier in your employees’ mailboxes.  Make an announcement if you have a PA system. 

3.  Even if your meeting starts late, wrap it up at the scheduled time.  This will also show your employees you are trying to stick to a schedule and may help them be on time when you have your next meeting.

4.  Close the doors to your meeting room and post a sign that says something along the lines of  “Do not enter. Meeting in progress.”   This will send a clear message to attendees that you will not tolerate lateness. 

5.  If you are planning to use temporary equipment such as laptop rentals or a projector rental for your meeting, make sure it’s set-up and powered on, ready to be used.  Familiarize yourself with the technology so that you do not have to spend the first fifteen minutes of the meeting learning how to show your slides. 

6.  Finally, be prepared.  Have your notes together and rehearsed, and be ready and waiting in the meeting room before your participants arrive.

10 Meeting Presentation Dos & Don’ts

10 Meeting Presentation Dos & Don'ts

Making a presentation can be intimidating, but if you follow a few simple rules, your presentation will run smoothly.  Below you’ll find five dos & don’ts of making a presentation at a meeting.  

Do:

1.  Smile & Be Yourself:  When you smile, the world smiles with you.  That can be said for meetings, too.  If the presenter is smiling and upbeat, attendees will smile and be more alert.   Also, the audience will relate to you if you are genuine and not trying to be something you aren’t.  It will put you and the audience at ease. 

2.  Use a Computer or Projector:  Using technology can make your presentation appear more professional.  Some people use dry erase boards or overhead projectors – that is outdated.  If you or your company doesn’t have a computer or projector that will work alongside your presentation, you can use a laptop rental or a projector rental from a computer firm such as Rentacomputer.com.   Computer Rentals are convenient because you can have them delivered and set-up right where you need them at a mere fraction of the cost of purchasing the equipment, yourself. 

3. Come Prepared:  Get to the location of the presentation early so you can be sure everything is set-up and you have all the materials you need.  Run through your presentation and make sure you’re ready to go. 

4.  Use Multiple Visual Aids: Using the same five slides for an hour-long presentation isn’t going to cut it.  You need to change slides every one to three minutes.  Give attendees enough time to read what your slide says but don’t give them time get bored and start looking elsewhere. 

5.  Move Around the Room:  Don’t stand behind a podium or in one single spot.  Move around the room, engage your audience, and give them reason to pay attention.  

Don’t:

1.  Make Spelling & Grammar Errors:  One of the most unprofessional things a presenter can do is forget to run spell check.  Do this and proofread your presentation several times before letting your audience see it.  

2.  Speak too fast, too softly:  This is probably a given, but a lot of people talk too fast when they get nervous.  Take time to think about what you’re saying and enunciate your words.  You may make other changes in your voice when you’re making a presentation, as well.  Personally, I know I tend to speak softly when I’m nervous and there is nothing worse than having an audience to tell you to speak up.  

3.  Make Animation Mistakes: Animation can be a great way to keep your audience interested in your presentation but a little goes a long way.  Don’t overdo it and make sure you know how to use it.  If something goes awry in the middle of a presentation, it will make you look unprepared and unprofessional.  

4.  Use Multiple Fonts:  One or two fonts to dress things up is OK, but when you begin using a different font for every sentence, you’ll overwhelm your audience and make your presentation hard to read. 

5.  Leave Your Screen Saver On:  Imagine you’ve just given a five-minute lecture and forgotten all about your projector, yet your audience is still very focused on the screen.  You look up and see ocean creatures swimming around on your projection screen and realize you forgot to turn your screen saver off.  That one’s pretty self-explanatory.