How To Organise The Perfect January Kick-Off Meeting

Rob Newton 21 December 2021

January is often a tough time for employers and employees alike. From the sluggish post-Christmas comedown to half-kept resolutions, many people struggle to motivate themselves in the new year. But with the right attitude and plans in place, businesses can help their staff beat the back-to-work January blues. And it starts with a fantastic January kick-off meeting.

How you start the year is really important — especially because of the continued disruption to the working practices we’re used to. Find out why a January kick-off meeting is crucial for your business — and how you can make yours a success in the age of COVID-19.

Why is a January kick-off meeting important?

A great January kick-off meeting can help your employees get back in the business frame of mind. With motivational keynote speakers and the right encouragement, you can inspire your staff to find their rhythm again, helping your business get back on track even sooner.

There are also practical reasons for hosting a January kick-off meeting. You can discuss business strategy with your whole team, helping align goals across the company to make your final quarter a success. By highlighting KPIs and putting tactics in place to meet them, you’ll give your staff members the focus and drive they need to achieve the most important goals for your business.

How to host a new year kick-off meeting in a pandemic

With so much uncertainty around the safety of large group meetups, it can be tempting to abandon in-person meetings this January. And for many businesses, this may be the right approach — for example, if you have a particularly large team, or you run a remote-first or remote-only company. Virtual events are a great way to engage with your team for a new year kick-off meeting.

However, many teams thrive on the camaraderie of an in-person meeting. If this is your situation, there are ways you can get together safely for your first meeting of 2022. With virtual, in-person and hybrid meeting options available, you just need a little creativity to find a great space for your January kick-off meeting.

Hosting a virtual kick-off meeting

Many people are used to holding meetings online by now, so it won’t come as a surprise to your team if you choose to get together in a virtual meeting space this January. If you opt for a virtual kick-off meeting, it’s a good idea to choose an experienced events host to facilitate your event. This will keep the meeting on track, make sure your segues are smooth, and keep your attendees engaged right through to the end. If you’re comfortable with getting small groups together, your leadership team could form an in-person panel led by your facilitator.

Get bonus points from your staff by sending them a little something in the post to accompany your kick-off meeting. With many people still recovering from their Christmas blowout, January is the perfect time to receive a back-to-work care package. Herbal tea and healthy snacks are delicious and great for wellbeing — so they’ll always go down a treat. When you book a speaker with us, we’ll happily arrange for gifts to be sent out to your staff at home to give them a little back-to-work boost.

Hosting an in-person meeting

If you’re looking for a safer way to get your team together in the same physical space, find a venue with plenty of outdoor space. It may be a little chilly, but if your team wraps up warm (and you make sure there’s tea on tap) there’s no reason why you can’t hold your kick-off meeting outside.

Not only is an outdoor space safer, it’s also a chance for your team to step outside the office and visit somewhere new. If your HQ is city-based, try taking a trip out to the countryside for a change of scenery. New places and experiences can spark creativity, so this is a great option if you’re looking for ways to boost inspiration in your January kick-off meeting.

Hosting a hybrid meeting

Hybrid meetings bridge the gap between virtual and in-person meetings. Hybrid meetings enable certain teams or staff members to meet up in-person, while others can join the meeting remotely. That means you can easily involve your vulnerable employees in your January kick-off meeting, while still addressing the needs of those who prefer to meet in-person.

Hybrid meetings can pose challenges — such as making sure all your staff feel equally involved in your event. Professional external facilitators create an inclusive environment that means everyone can share and participate as much as they want to. This transforms your new year event from a strategic meeting into a genuine team building exercise.

Why hire a speaker for your January kick-off meeting?

Hiring a speaker to host your corporate event is a great way to kick off the new year. There are lots of reasons to choose a professional facilitator:

Make virtual or hybrid meetings run with ease. Our practised speakers know just how to coordinate your event so that it’s smooth, efficient, and engaging.

Let your leadership team enjoy your kick-off meeting, too. Your SMT can make sure they have the right amount of involvement, while encouraging your staff to contribute more.

Create a less corporate environment. Your business is at the heart of your kick-off meeting — but that doesn’t mean it needs a stuffy corporate feel. A warm, engaging speaker will create an environment that’s both relaxed and motivational — the perfect atmosphere for a post-Christmas work event.

Inspire your employees to start the year with gusto. Our team is adept at finding the right speaker for any event. With a little information from you, we can find the perfect speaker to galvanise your team.

5 Inspiring Speakers For Your January Kick-Off Meeting

We know what it takes to find the right speaker — and we always endeavour to find the best speaker for every event. Whether you need a virtual event specialist, a proven professional facilitator, or an inspirational speaker to motivate your team, here’s a handful of great potential speakers for your January kick-off meeting.

Jonny Jacobs

Johnny Jacobs specialises in discussing mental health in the workplace — a topic under more scrutiny than ever as businesses continue to navigate the pandemic. Show your staff their wellbeing is one of your business priorities in 2022 by booking a wellbeing specialist for your kick-off meeting.

Anne-Marie Imafidon

Anne-Marie Imafidon is passionate about STEM subjects. As one of the most influential women in technology, she’s a fantastic keynote speaker for the January kick-off meeting at any tech company.

Keith Antoine has an incredible track record of managing teams, boosting performance and reaching ambitious goals. As a result, he knows what it takes to motivate entire teams to achieve their objectives — making him a brilliant speaker when your team needs a pep talk.

Cathy O'Dowd

Cathy O'Dowd has climbed Everest not once, but twice. Her compelling story of risk, adventure and adversity will inspire audiences to achieve their goals during the new year, making Cathy a highly inspiring kickoff event speaker. 

Duncan Wardle

Duncan is the former Vice President for Innovation and Creativity at Walt Disney Company who is perfect to bring a fresh approach and unlock the collective energy within your teams to prepare for the year ahead.

Book your January kick-off meeting speaker at Speakers Corner

We specialise in finding the right speaker for your event. We’re not just a go-between — we’ll actively seek out the right speaker for your business, and when we’ve found the perfect pairing, we’ll set everything up for you. From times to travel to fees, everything is in hand when you book with Speakers Corner.

Contact us on +44 (0) 20 7607 7070 or drop us an email info@speakerscorner.co.uk to discuss your in-person or virtual event. 


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