Scheduling a meeting? Wait! Before you do, make sure it’s a meeting that people will be happy to attend.
Here’s a quick-reference checklist to make sure you get the most out of your meetings. You might find that you don’t even need that meeting.
Questions to ask before scheduling a meeting:
⬜ Is this really necessary?
Could it be done through a doc, Slack, or email instead?
⬜ Who should be involved?
If in doubt, follow the 10% rule: attendance means participation.
Don’t let busy calendars postpone important decisions.
⬜ How long should it be?
Default to 30 min. If you need longer, try 45 min before jumping straight to an hour.
⬜ Are you giving a presentation longer than 5 minutes?
If so, record it with an async video tool, like Loom, and use the meeting time for discussing rather than watching.
⭐ TIP: Be cautious about brainstorming sessions. Often they fail because they’re too long or people wait until ‘creativity strikes.’ If brainstorming is necessary, keep it focused and timeboxed.
Before the meeting:
⬜ Make sure you’ve included the Zoom, Meet, or Teams link in the invite
⬜ Prepare your attendees:
Share an agenda
Make the objective clear. How will you know if the meeting has been successful?
Let people know what you expect from them
⬜ Designate a notetaker (if you need to record the meeting minutes)
⬜ Nudge people to read/watch pre-meeting notes (especially when this material forms the basis for the meeting discussion)
Simple sample agenda
Goal: Determine project priorities and assign roles.
Welcome (5 min)
Clarify doubts or questions from the presentation (linked below) (5-10 min)
Determine top two priorities for the next sprint (5-10 min)
Assign roles for follow-up (5 min)
* Please watch this 15-minute Loom presentation BEFORE you come [LINK].
During the meeting:
⬜ Repeat the goal of the meeting upfront
⬜ Be respectful and create a psychologically safe space
⬜ Avoid decision by committee
Gather input from multiple people, but productive meetings need a single decision-maker.
⬜ End the meeting once the objective is reached. Don’t fill the extra time—give it back to people (they’ll thank you for this).
⭐ TIP: Stay on topic. If someone starts to stray from the meeting objective, try this: “That’s an interesting point. Let’s save it for a follow-up discussion.”
After the meeting:
⬜ Share the notes or recording from the meeting
⬜ Summarize the decision made or when it will be made
⬜ Let participants know the next steps
You don’t need to thank us for this. But we bet your meeting participants will thank you.
Love your work ❤️
Wouldn’t work be better with fewer, more effective meetings? Want to see what it’s like?
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