Where to begin with creating team meeting agendas
A team meeting agenda is a schedule a manager builds to inform participants of what events will occur during a meeting. It’s often the manager’s responsibility to ensure the meeting stays on topic the entire session. They should also make sure attendees are engaged throughout the meeting. To do this, managers should build a strong team meeting agenda that encourages attendees to contribute thoughts and ideas.
Engaging attendees in a meeting allows everyone to feel like they’re included in the decision-making process and informed on any important company announcements. Maintaining an active meeting agenda motivates team members to brainstorm and collaborate on ideas and projects together. This leads to team members submitting valuable quality work.
As you build your agenda, include items that allow you to remain encouraging throughout the meeting to set and maintain a positive tone. Researching or brainstorming creative ideas for agenda items is a great way to keep participants interested in the meeting. Request ideas for meeting topics from team members who will attend the meeting.
What to include in a team meeting agenda
Include the following talking points and topics in your meeting as you build your agenda:
- Company or department announcements
- Impressive employee performances
- Updates on projects
- Action items to discuss and establish
- Deadlines for upcoming projects
- Additional items team members would like to discuss
Related: How to Motivate Your Employees
How to create a meeting agenda
Your meeting agenda should engage attendees and contain topics relevant to all participants at the meeting. Follow the steps below to learn how to create an effective meeting agenda:
1. Email team members to ask for topic ideas
As you brainstorm ideas for the meeting, email team members to request ideas for topics. This makes them feel like they are a valuable member of the team and encourages them to be more engaged in the meeting. When you send your message to employees, ask if there are any announcements they plan to make or presentations they want to give. Let team members run different meeting items to provide a unique experience and keep everyone involved.
2. Determine the goals you plan to accomplish during the meeting
Your meeting should have a reason and overall goal. For example, if you’re holding a meeting with the marketing department, your goal can be to brainstorm ideas for an upcoming campaign. Set this goal before building the agenda, and make sure every item contributes to the overall goal. If an item is irrelevant to your goal, replace it with a more relevant topic or add it to another upcoming meeting where it fits better.
3. Estimate how long each meeting item should take
If you asked team members to contribute announcements or presentations during the meeting, ask them to estimate how long it may take to present this material. This helps you provide a more accurate estimation regarding how long the meeting may last. You should set a time for the meeting to end and stay within that time frame. If you haven’t discussed all the meeting items by your end time, you should still dismiss the meeting.
This allows attendees to remain on track with their individual schedules. Stay within the time estimates in your agenda, and refrain from letting items last too long. Move on to the next agenda item at its designated time, and ask attendees to email you with additional thoughts if they need to.
4. Start with announcements and employee recognition
The beginning of your meeting can start with any announcements regarding the company or your specific departments. Mention specific announcements, such as upcoming company functions or updates about a certain project.
Once announcements are made, recognize employees who have achieved certain goals. Give shoutouts to employees for completing a difficult project, submitting an impressive product or receiving high praise from a client. Once you praise the employee, encourage team members to give other shoutouts to boost morale and encourage positive relationships.
5. Note project updates and action items
The bulk of your meeting should focus on the main purpose. Topics you can discuss include:
- Project updates: Give updates and information regarding projects and deadlines established the last meeting.
- Ideas for new projects: Brainstorm any ideas for a new project, and encourage team members to collaborate with each other.
- Assign new tasks: Once ideas have been developed, you can assign tasks to employees and give them deadlines for each assignment.
- Action items or important discussions: You can discuss any conversations or important decisions regarding a project or your overall goal for the meeting.
6. Request any final updates from team members
To finish the meeting, ask if anyone has final questions or thoughts regarding the discussion. Encourage team members to email or meet with you if any questions arise regarding the meeting later on. This helps them feel comfortable approaching you with any ideas or questions they may have.
Team meeting FAQ
Below is a frequently asked question regarding running effective team meetings:
How long should a team meeting last?
Your meeting should last long enough to keep team members engaged in the information you’re discussing. Keep employees engaged by encouraging participation throughout the meeting and making all information relevant to each attendee. Try to keep each item at reasonable lengths, and try to make the overall meeting time approximately an hour or less.