One-on-one with Mike van der Vijver

Only a week sets up apart from the beginning of Inside and we have been talking to the key note speaker Mike van der Vijver about meeting design and the knowledge participants of the conference will gain.

1. What is Meeting design?
“Meeting Design means making the programme for a meeting by combining the specific objectives of the organiser (which I call the Meeting Owner), the expectations and objectives of the participants and the desired changes in content in the course of the meeting.”

2. Who is Meeting designer?
“Well, today not very many people, ha, ha! Many meeting planners could be
or become meeting designers. The reason is that today most meetings are “organised” but not really “deisgned.” By this I mean that there is a separation between the logistics of meetings and what happens inside the meeting room with content.”

3. What is wrong with the format of meetings we have now?
“They are based on a number of wrong assumptions and are, therefore, mostly ineffective (and boring…). An example is the use of speaker presentations and PowerPoint. The tacit assumption for this format are that
1) one person has all the relevant knowledge;
2) Classroom teaching as a didactical model;
3) participants can learn by listening passively.
All three these assumptions are wrong.”

4. Why is meeting design important nowadays?
“By designing programmes carefuly, they become much more effective. This is what our clients tell us. Face-to-face meetings are a significant investment for al organisations. They need to capitalise on the added value of participants’  physical presence. This is only going to become more important as organisations are increasingly under pressure to manage their resources in the most efficient way.”

5. What we can expect if we attend INSIDE Conference in Rovinj?
“1) Inspiration from people within and outside the meeting industry;
2) Real training: i.e. a bit of theory and then exercises to practice meeting design;
3) A series of surprising formats;
4) A lot of content and fun in a well-designed environment. “