Doing It With A Meeting Rockstar
How greenlight Account Supervisor Brittney Stephens preps, presents, and plans for her meetings. Hint: Never go in without a coffee.
Hometown: Keller, TX
Years in Dallas: 6 years
Current Dallas neighborhood: Farmers Branch
Memory from your first work meeting: The memory that always sticks out is when I presented The Village at Fairview and Allen’s holiday direct mail campaign to Heather Herring. There were two firsts that day. One, I had never gone to a clients office alone. Two, I had never presented creative. Imagine my nerves!! The moment from that meeting that I’ll never forget was after I had done my whole pitch on why this would work for their brand, Heather looked at me and said “Do you believe in this? Do you personally, truly believe that this will work?” I took a deep breath, thought about it for a few seconds and confidently answered yes.
Since that meeting something became crystal clear to me. You can have incredible creative and a strong strategy but sometimes, the trust between a client and project manager is what will make the biggest difference.
What does “enter with intention” mean to you?
In regards to a meeting, entering with intention means going in prepared, having a strong objective and knowing what needs to happen for you to walk away feeling that the meeting was a success.
How do you prep for a meeting?
First, I think through who’s in the meeting and what structure, tone and flow they are the most receptive to. Does a casual conversational vibe work? Or do they need a more formal feel? Knowing which path to go is crucial.
Second, I mentally go through the entire meeting. Who needs to present what? What questions might come up? Knowing these things help me prepare our team and makes me feel more confident going in.
Third, what assets are needed? Are we projecting something? Are handouts needed? If the answer is yes, I make sure everything is prepared and working 30 minutes to an hour before.
Lastly, REHEARSE REHEARSE REHEARSE. If you can present or lead a brainstorm on the fly… more power to you! For me, rehearsing is key so that I ensure that I get all of my points across in a clear and cohesive way.
Why is setup so important to creating an environment where inspiration and creativity can flourish?
Meeting set up is like the icing on the cake. You could go without, but it wouldn’t be nearly as good or memorable. Ensuring you have the appropriate materials, such as a white board, notebooks, pens, music, etc. will help the meeting be more productive and will make all attendees feel prepared.
… the trust between a client and project manager is what will make the biggest difference.
Another important set up component to think about is – “fuel.” In my opinion, all meetings need a beverage of some sort. Coffee, water, soda, etc. If your meeting requires serious brainpower or is longer than an hour, I recommend including snacks. It keeps people fueled up so they can power through the meeting. It also lets them move around and regain focus.
What’s the one thing every meeting needs for it to be successful?
A leader. You need someone who owns leading the meeting, ensuring that you’re staying true to the meeting objective and providing next steps.
What’s your favorite part of the HOWDO space? Why?
That’s a tough one! I have two…
1. The kitchen. Some of the best conversations and ideas come from standing around the kitchen. It’s an informal area that makes people feel comfortable.
2. The TV lounge area. There’s nothing I love more than having a meeting on the couches. Everything feels more conversational and relaxed. People are more collaborative and comfortable.