One admin sought advice on the Admin Pro Forum (www.prapforum.typepad.com/), asking, “How should I handle this in a courteous and professional way?”
Here’s what other admins suggest:
Make it easier for invitees to reply by using Outlook or Lotus Notes meeting invitations. “The recipients will receive an e-mail with the information, and it will ask them to accept, decline or tentatively accept.” — Miriah
Order extra food, then show your boss why you spent the money. “I generally order for one more than expected. Then I give the Lotus Notes status list to my boss, so he can see who responded and who didn’t. If it is someone under his , he talks to them about responding to invitations.” — Dolores
Provide lunch or dinner only to those who send an R.S.V.P. “When I started saying that food could only be guaranteed if they responded, I got 100% responses. Seems their desire to eat overcame their fear of commitment.” — Bernie
Reward those who R.S.V.P. with parking passes. “I work with a large medical group (230-plus physicians), and I found the best thing is to send an e-mail telling them that parking passes will only be sent to those who R.S.V.P. It is the best trick I have tried yet!” — Michelle
Send out invitations more than once. “I work at a university and invite students, staff members and faculty to a luncheon once a year. In the e-mail invitation, I state that they need to R.S.V.P. to reserve their seat, as space is limited. Putting this statement in has greatly improved my responses. I then send a reminder to those I have not heard from. Then I send a third invitation to the last of the holdouts and tell them that this is their last chance. Out of 80 invitees last year, I only had three fail to R.S.V.P.” — Nancy
Make a personal phone call. “We had this problem and started calling people who did not respond to the e-mail. Not a single person complained about it being pushy, and our attendance jumped substantially. Most people appreciated the more personal touch, and often thanked us for the reminder.” — Mark
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