Gather Round: A Staff Meeting Template that Works

With e-mail dominating internal communications, staff meetings are becoming a lost art form. Here’s a meeting template that helps engage employees and minimize their passive participation.

A little background: I developed this template for a marketing communications firm that needed to bring together its creatives and administrators (aka “the suits”). With the account execs out on client or media visits and the creative staff at their desks, casual internal communications was no longer effective for this group of 12 employees.

The following hour long agenda was used in staff meetings held twice a month. This template can be adapted by other organizations to suit their needs.

  1. What’s going on – agency principals share strategies, policies, and organizational updates (approx. 10 minutes)
  2. Business development – briefly sharing information (approx. 20 minutes) on:
    1. new clients and prospects (including which account execs were involved so staff knew who to go to if a new client or prospect called)
    2. client opportunities (ideas/suggestions on “what else” can be done or offered to help clients achieve their marketing & sales goals)
    3. analysis of lost business (what happened)
  3. Campaigns in progress – brief sharing of new creative work and, if needed, existing campaign updates (approx. 15 minutes)
  4. Lessons Learned – one or two employees voluntarily share a recent work-related experience (approx. 5 minutes):
    1. Favorite Mistakes (things we did that we don’t want to repeat)
    2. Favorite Catches (good things we did that we hope to do again)
  5. Wrap up/next steps – summarizing any follow up action items (approx. 5 minutes).

The result of the new meetings was a more informed and cohesive staff who better understood the firm’s business.They also expressed a better appreciation for how their individual and collective efforts contributed to client service and satisfaction.

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