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Whether you’ve been hired to manage an existing team, promoted to manage your co-workers, or hired your own dream team, it’s time to get ready for your first team meeting!
Effective Team Meeting Agenda Template
You’ve worked hard to get here, but your hard work has just begun—and it all starts with your first meeting with your team.
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It’s okay to be nervous. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed with all the ideas you might want to share with your new team, but remember that you don’t need to cover all the details at your first team meeting. The first meeting between you and your new team should have 3 goals:
To do this, keep the first meeting short and informal. Avoid the shop floor conversation and take the opportunity to get to know your team and really listen to them. Doing this early will help you understand your team better and benefit you in the long run. You can reach out to your team and ask for more detailed discussions in future face-to-face meetings.
To help you get off to a good start, we’ve gathered ideas for first team meetings from the world’s top management experts and developed the following program to improve your first team meetings.
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You’re new to this role, so taking the time to familiarize yourself with ice-breaking meetings will help you in several ways:
3. A loose starting point will help people feel more comfortable talking and sharing their thoughts going forward.
This element of the agenda for your first team meeting can also help build a sense of camaraderie – but be mindful of the questions you ask! In a June 2019 article on the Hubspot blog, Caroline Forsey emphasizes the importance of this:
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“The best icebreakers have the power to strengthen bonds between colleagues, spark better brainstorming sessions, and create an inclusive atmosphere. But that’s easier said than done, and the wrong questions to break the ice can lead to awkwardness and even increased tension.”
In short, make sure ice breakers are open and give team members an opportunity to share something genuine.
In addition to getting to know your team on a personal level, this information can help you adjust your management style to get the most out of your team early on and in the long run. This is where active listening and/or note-taking is helpful.
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After everyone has had a chance to speak at the icebreaker, you should take time to briefly discuss your background. Sure – you can talk about your achievements and knowledge – but this is not an audition; it’s an opportunity to build trust.
Resist the impulse to monologue about yourself; you don’t want to come off as self-absorbed. Instead, try to outline how you hope to support the team.
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Share a short personal story that illustrates your work style or leadership philosophy. Show your team what motivates and impresses you by telling them what you enjoy outside of work. The sooner your team gets to know you, the sooner they will feel comfortable with you.
If you’re a new manager of an existing team, you have the opportunity to learn how they’ve worked in the past and get feedback to start improving. If it’s a new team, use this time to get to know people’s work styles and their personal recipes for success. Either way, use the information gained from this part of the team’s first meeting plan as a breeding ground for early, small wins to earn your team’s trust.
The Management Resource Guide provides the following information on the types of questions you can ask your team to get the right information:
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“Ask questions that allow you to understand the current state of the team. That is, current opportunities, challenges, problems and opportunities. The questions you ask should help you assess morale, workload, skills and barriers.”
Mary Shapiro, who teaches organizational behavior at Simmons College and is the author of the HBR Guide to Leading Teams, shares helpful tactics to help everyone align with processes:
“One particularly effective exercise is to have people share their best and worst team experiences. Discussing these good and bad dynamics will help everyone understand what behaviors they want to encourage in the future – and what to avoid.”
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Starting a feedback conversation at the first staff meeting shows your team that you value clear and honest communication and helps set the tone for continued openness.
Here you can outline your team’s main vision and share some of the goals you have in mind. Keep it general and topical to encourage the team to share their ideas. Again, your initial focus should be on learning, so don’t try to introduce anything here that aims to change the existing team structure.
“It’s rare that someone comes along and redefines the group’s goals in a profound way.”
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Use this time to set your expectations and ground rules and explain how you want the team to operate.
In an article in the Harvard Business Review, Carolyn O’Hara describes how you can make your expectations clear to your team:
“Explain what’s behind every decision you make, what your priorities are, and how you’ll evaluate the team’s performance, both individually and collectively. Walk them through the metrics you can use to measure progress so they understand how they’ll be evaluated and what’s expected of them.”
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In addition to presenting your own expectations, give your team the opportunity to communicate your needs. During this part of the first team meeting agenda, you and your team can begin to answer some important questions together:
Don’t forget to leave time at the end of the meeting to open your voice to your team. This ensures that everyone leaves the meeting with a clear understanding of everything and reinforces your openness.
Finally, be sure to explain the next steps and schedule one-on-one interviews with each team member to get more specific information about their respective roles and answer any questions in more detail. This will show that you are a proactive leader.
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The more you communicate with your team early on, the sooner your team will get to know you and the better you will all be able to work together in the future.
Ultimately, the more information you can arm yourself with in advance, the less nervous you’ll be before your first team meeting. Plus, if you use the free 1st Team Game Template in the game , you’ll feel prepared for any curveballs that come your way!
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Effective Team Meeting
Leadership requires foresight, and foresight means the need to plan ahead and effectively make decisions that benefit the organization. If you want your leadership team to make better business decisions, you can start by scheduling a recurring leadership team meeting using the leadership meeting template below.
Leadership team meetings provide phenomenal value if they are properly conducted and the tone of the meeting is set right from the meeting agenda.
An executive team meeting allows the executive team to come together to stay informed and in decision-making mode for the company. A regularly scheduled meeting like this can be critical to keeping all departments on the same page. This executive team meeting agenda template can help you keep your meeting on track.
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A leadership meeting agenda should help guide the meeting toward the desired goals. Most of these meetings are held at least once a month. Executive and management members of the company should meet to discuss their departments and responsibilities. This is usually a meeting that combines updates with decision making.
The purpose of the leadership team meeting is to ensure that decisions made by management properly reflect the goals and objectives of the entire company, while also taking into account the individual needs, constraints and goals of each element of the company, such as each team. . Well-run leadership team meetings allow everyone in the company to be on the same page as the company going forward.
Conducting a management team meeting requires careful planning. This success has many elements, but often requires advance planning
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