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Executive Meeting Agenda Templates

Free meeting templates for leaders and executives
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Team Meeting Templates for the Leadership Team

The goal of leadership meetings is to make decisions about the business, utilizing its most savvy and strategically-minded talent to set the vision, strategy, and path toward execution.

Yet, research indicates that few companies utilize executive time in a disciplined way. Managers overspend time on issues that have little impact on company success.

So while the free executive meeting agenda templates on this page provide frameworks for many common types of leadership meetings, as you fill the agendas in, consider the topics you are adding. Address only high-value topics and try to delegate lower-level problems to lesser organizational levels. Be judicious with your executive team and the time they spend together. Make sure every agenda item reflects a priority for your business.

Ideal Executive Meeting Team Size

For best results in each meeting, consider the size of the group. As group sizes increase, often so does the duration of the meeting and its relative cost to the organization.

Is everyone's contribution required at every meeting? You want to avoid unproductive meetings by involving too many people. So, who participates in executive sessions?

The purpose of a meeting often will help determine who should attend. Some meetings are best capped at a certain level of seniority, such as a weekly meeting where department heads coordinate on large issues that may cross their various departments.

Others leadership meetings require specific knowledge, requiring some departments to be present, but not others. A product planning meeting will need leaders from the product and developer side of an organization, but leaders from marketing and sales may better be involved before and after the meeting for feedback (but not during).

Keep Agenda-Setting Focused and Disciplined

Many leadership meetings either have exactly the same agenda every recurring meeting (weekly, monthly, etc), or an agenda that is totally ad hoc. Both are problematic.

When you focus on the most relevant matters, the agenda is going to change from meeting to meeting. Sure, the format may remain the same, but the individual topics will range across all of the important issues that need to be addressed. If you're continually discussing the same topic, you're not an effective leadership team because you're failing to make a decision that sticks.

The purpose of any agenda item for your leadership meeting should be either:

  • Making decisions
  • Bringing up and solving problems
  • Aligning cross-functionally across departments

If it doesn't fit into one of these areas, such as giving a simple status update, a meeting may not be the best place to share this information or have this type of conversation. Share status updates in advance of the meeting so that the group can stay focused on issues and challenges that require conversations—the one thing you can only do in a meeting and no where else.

Deal with Operations and Strategy Separately

Strategic and operational issues require different modes of thinking. These are best kept separate, either in separate meetings, or in separate discussions at least. If you find a discussion is blurring the lines between strategy and tactics, call it out to the group and ask which is being discussed. This will help make it clear to the group what issue is actually on the table. Speaking of which...

Put Real Choices On The Table

If your leadership team struggles with long meetings, it can be helpful to focus on the decision-making part of the discussion. After a brief analysis, encourage members of the group to start to lay out real solutions. Give concrete examples. Propose a specific course of action.

People can debate theories for countless hours. But by keeping the meeting rooted in tangible ideas, you make it easier to discuss and decide.

Great leaders meet better. Learn how.

As a manager or leader, you don’t just set the meeting agenda for high-level meetings. You set the tone, tempo, and expectations.

So in addition to the executive meeting agenda templates you can download on this page, we’ve compiled several resources to help you run better meetings. Those resources are contained in the sections that follow, where you'll find:

  1. Meeting secrets from executives like Reed Hastings (Netflix CEO) and Oprah Winfrey (OWN CEO).
  2. How to run a meeting as an executive, plus common one-on-one meeting mistakes to avoid.
  3. Previews of our collection of agenda examples.
  4. Frequently asked questions about leadership and management meetings.

Meeting secrets from 5 top executives

If there's one overarching takeaway from the top executives' approaches to meetings that we studied, it's that there's no single, best approach.

In the section below, pick up a few nuggets of meeting wisdom from Facebook, Disney, Twitter, OWN, and Netflix executives.

Sharyl Sandberg

  • Start all meetings with each attendee getting a chance to discuss their emotional and professional state.
  • Set a clear goal for every meeting, i.e. to make a decision or have a discussion.
  • End meetings early if all items are completed, which should happen often.

Ed Catmull

  • The leader’s primary role is to "reduce blocks to candor."
  • Reduce the fear meeting attendees may feel in anticipation of being wrong, offending someone, or triggering retaliation.
  • Encourage exploration of myriad trains of thought, in an additive (not competitive) manner.

Oprah Winfrey, OWN CEO

  • Kick off each meeting with three questions: What is our intention for this meeting? What's important? And what matters?
  • Minimize time in meetings.
  • If it can be done through an email, don't hold a meeting.

Jack Dorsey, Twitter and Square CEO

  • Dedicate each day of the week to a different area of focus, i.e. Mondays for leadership meetings, Tuesdays for product meetings, etc.
  • Build repetition into your schedule.

Reed Hastings, Netflix CEO

  • End each meeting with this question: “Have we made any decisions today, and if so, how are we going to communicate them?”
  • For senior management meetings, board members may occasionally observe, but not participate.
  • Prioritize memos over presentations for board communications with directors.

Management Meetings: Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Structure a Management Meeting?

Here’s the agenda we’d recommend you use to structure your management meeting:

  • Review Metrics/KPIs - Start with high-level data to keep the pulse on your organization. How are these key metrics tracking?
  • Company Update - Any major topics work spending time on with this important group? What issues are impacting employees the most?
  • Department/Team Lead Roundtable - Have team leads give a quick overview related to recent wins, current priorities, and anywhere they are stuck or need help
  • Problem-Solving Session - Choose one major challenge or opportunity that aligns with your priorities. Give an overview and ask your team for insight on how to improve performance for the business
  • Next Steps - Always leave a spot on your agenda for next steps as a reminder to document and assign all tasks from the meeting

What Should a Manager Say in a First Meeting?

In the first meeting with their new team, a manager should—above all—get to know her team. Other important things to cover are:

  1. Icebreakers
  2. Setting Team Expectations
  3. Feedback (for you as a new manager)

What Do You Talk About in a Leadership Meeting?

In leadership meetings, the top management team meets to make strategic decisions about how to approach the most important opportunities and problems the company faces. If the decision can’t be made during the leadership meeting, the team discusses when and how they’ll reach a decision and who must be involved in granting final approval.


Preview the templates

All-Hands Meeting

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Company Vision

  • Start every all hands by reiterating the company vision — where we are at, what we believe, and where we are going.

Key Metrics

  • Look at high-level metrics and explain what they mean in the context of the business and the broader market in general.

Customer/employee updates

  • Invite leads from teams/departments to provide brief updates. Focus on high-level ideas and customer anecdotes.
  • Make an effort to include new learnings — what has gone well, what hasn’t, and how that changes things.

Deep dive (Important topics & large-scale changes)

  • Optional agenda item for occasionally drilling deep into something that is happening at the company. Examples include changes in strategy, positioning, and hiring/restructuring.

AMA (Ask me anything)

  • Leave time at the end of the meeting to answer employee questions.

Appreciation reward

  • Many companies like to honor teams or individuals during their All Hands. Often these awards are peer-nominated and do not come from the executive team.

Board Meeting

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Preparation

The most important aspect of this meeting is the meeting memo. This way you don't spend half the meeting briefing one another. Here is what you need to include in every board memo: 

  • Each team leader writes their own section, no more than 1-2 pages summarizing the state of the business. Introduction, things going well, challenges, plans for the future, update on items from last time. These sections can contain graphs and charts
  • The CEO summarizes and provides a narrative at the beginning of the document
  • The VP Finance attaches the financial statements and key reports
  • The team circulates the narrative with the board ahead of time. Board members comment and ask questions as they read. The team clarifies points and provides analysis where necessary

Meeting Minutes

Call to Order

  • A [meeting type] meeting of [organization name] was held on [date] at [location]. It began at [time] and was presided over by [chairperson’s name], with [secretary’s name] as secretary

Attendance

Voting members


Guests


Members not in attendance

Approval of minutes

A motion to approve the minutes of the previous [date] meeting was made by [name] and seconded by [name].

Matters up for decision:

  • Major strategic decisions
  • Routine decisions

Matters up for discussion: 


CEO report: 

  • Current pressing issues
  • Matters for approval
  • Update on strategic plan implementation/rollout 
  • Critical Key Performance Indicators 
  • Risk and compliance update
  • Discussion around financial statements and key reports  

Committee minutes 

  • Audit and risk committee
  • Governance committee 

Other matters for discussion

Meeting finalization 

  • Actions to be taken
  • Items for public disclosure
  • Next meeting
  • Meeting close

Executive Strategy Session

Template

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Note: Video response is a Hugo feature, and not available on the Word and Google Doc versions of this agenda template.

---

Welcome/Overview of the Day

Measuring success/KPIs


Setting the stage

  • Where are we right now as an organization?
  • What do we do well?
  • ---Where have we found success in the past?
  • ---What are our competitive advantages?
  • What can we improve?
  • What would we like to see?

Review Vision, Mission, and purpose

  • Where are we going? Is this still our vision?
  • Is this still our mission? What does winning look like?
  • Is this still our purpose?

Where are we going?

  • Why do we exist?
  • Who is the customer we serve?
  • Where are we going?
  • How are we going to get there?
  • Strategy Priorities
  • Why change?

What do we need to focus on to achieve our vision?


Action planning for the strategic priorities

  • What is the most important priority moving forward?
  • Risk identification - What is going to stand in our way

Next Steps/Action Steps

  • @name Task by DUE-DATE

Executive Weekly Team Meeting

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Review Metrics/KPIs

Track progress on metrics, goals vs. actual. Where are we off from the plan? Why?


Insights

  • What’s going on in the company?
  • What’s going on with the customers?
  • What’s going on in the market?

Roundtable

Keep everyone up to date, look for efficiencies, and help each other get unblocked.

Name

  • Recent wins
  • Current priorities
  • Anything you are stuck on?

Name

  • Recent wins
  • Current priorities
  • Anything you are stuck on?

Deep dive

Before the meeting, select a project or area of the business to do a deep dive into. Have someone give a presentation on that area.

Messages to share with the team

Is there anything to be communicated to the entire company?


Next Steps

  • @name Task by DUE-DATE

Formal Board Meeting Minutes

Template

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Call to Order

A [meeting type] meeting of [organization name] was held on [date] at [location]. It began at [time] and was presided over by [chairperson’s name], with [secretary’s name] as secretary.

Attendance 

Voting members


Guests


Members not in attendance


Approval of minutes

A motion to approve the minutes of the previous [date] meeting was made by [name] and seconded by [name].

Officer’s Reports


Other Reports


Main Motions

  • Motion by [name] and seconded by [name] that [state the motion here]. The motion [carried or failed] with [#] in favor and [#] against.

Announcements


Adjournment

Level 10 Meeting

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Segue

Scorecard

Rock Review

Customer/Employee Headlines

To-do List

IDS

Conclude

Monthly Management Meeting

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Review Metrics/KPIs

Track progress on metrics, goals vs. actual. Where are we off from the plan? Why?


Company Update

Share key updates and provide a “State of the Union.”

Department/Team Lead Roundtable

Keep everyone up to date, look for efficiencies, and help each other get unblocked.

Name

Recent wins


Current priorities


Anything you are stuck on?


Name

Recent wins


Current priorities


Anything you are stuck on?


Professional Development (Optional)

Improve your long-term business results through an interactive learning or team-building experience.

Problem-Solving Session

Chose one challenge or area of priority.

  • Presentation on the challenge
  • Open discussion to better understand the challenge and find solutions
  • Assign next steps

Next Steps

  • @name Task by DUE-DATE

--

Quarterly Planning Meeting

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Note: Record and playback videos in your meeting docs is a Hugo feature. This is not available in your meeting agenda template for Word and Google Docs.

--

Welcome

  • Review agenda
  • Confirm objectives

Opening Session

Check-in and good news

Review previous quarter

  • Results
  • Bright spots
  • Lessons learned

Stop, Keep, Start

  • What are we doing now?
  • What are 1-2 things we can work on?
  • What should we stop doing?

Review annual plan

  • YTD progress
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

-- Break --

Quarterly Execution Plan

What should be the focus of this quarter?

  • Develop theme/subthemes
  • What is your company’s number one thing?

Priorities

Company top 3-5 priorities

  • Determine top priorities
  • Assign each priority an owner
  • Set success criteria

Individual top 3-5 priorities

  • Determine top priorities for individuals
  • Set success criteria

Communication plan for the rest of the company

Wrap Up

  • Summarize and commit.

--

Senior Leadership Team Meeting

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Engine Dashboard Overview

Have each functional team (sales, marketing, product, etc.) prepare and give an overview of how they're running.

Include:

  • Goal’s and how they're tracking
  • Update on sub-processes
  • Key wins, losses, opportunities, concerns
  • What we're focused on

Observations and Learnings

  • Customer anecdotes 
  • Feedback
  • Other

CTAs / Asks

  • What does each functional team need from the rest of the leadership team
  • Follow-ups and actions (all actions need a directly responsible team member and a due date)

Start-up Board Meeting Agenda

Template

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Big Picture

  • CEO Update
  • Highlights
  • High-level Challenges
  • Company Needs

Calibration

Tell the story of the company using the fewest number of metrics/charts to properly frame the current status.

Financial metrics

Financial performance & forecast (quarterly)

  • Quarterly P&L
  • Monthly waterfalls (revenue, burn, cash balance, headcount)
  • Performance vs. Plan

Funnel metrics

  • Website Visits
  • Leads
  • Conversions
  • Conversion Rate

Product engagement metrics

  • Signups
  • Downloads
  • Activations
  • Engagement
  • Retention
  • NPS

Company Building & Updates

Org Chart 

  • Forward-looking - show current team and positions to be filled w/in 6 mo.

Product/Engineering

  • Product Roadmap
  • ---Major launches & achievements since last meeting
  • ---Roadmap next 6 mo. (where is company heading)
  • Major Challenges (where is help needed?)

Growth/Marketing

  • Performance against KPIs
  • Positioning
  • Brand
  • Messaging
  • PR

Sales/BD

  • Performance against KPIs
  • Sales pipeline & forecast
  • Major challenges (where is help needed?)

Operations (if appropriate)

  • Performance against KPIs
  • Major challenges (where is help needed?)

Working Sessions

Session One

  • Deep dive into a functional area, partnership opportunity or business challenge
Session Two
  • Deep dive into quarterly goals or product challenges

Closed Session

  • Feedback to founders
  • Formalities
  • Stock option grants

Weekly Manager Meeting

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Hi All!

How is everyone doing this week? What is everyone's headspace?

  • Manager #1
  • Manager #2
  • Manager #3

Last week's highs

Share some highlights from last week that lifted your spirits:

  • Manager #1
  • Manager #2
  • Manager #3

Last week's lows

Share some moments from last week that were tough:

  • Manager #1
  • Manager #2
  • Manager #3

General update

Report on any general updates within your teams. 


Last week’s goals

How did you perform against last week’s goals?


This week’s goals

Set some goals for this upcoming week.


Last week’s tasks

How did you and your team progress on outstanding tasks and projects?


This weeks’ tasks

What’s on your list this week?


Anything else to note or share?

Include any other items to discuss here.


Reminders

Include reminders to come back to in future meetings.


Executive

Agenda Template FAQs

What are good questions to ask in a one-on-one?

Personal/rapport-building:

  • What worries you? What keeps you up at night?
  • What are you most excited about?
  • How’s life outside work?
  • What do you like to do on the weekends?
  • Do you feel like you’re making progress on your career goals?
  • What are your big dreams in life outside of work?

Career growth:

  • What skills would you like to develop?
  • Do you feel challenged in your role?
  • Is there any training or education we should be investing in for you?
  • How do you see your role evolving?
  • Do you feel like you’re making progress on your career goals?
  • Who in the company would you like to learn from?

Giving/receiving feedback:

  • Do you feel you’re getting enough feedback?
  • What’s an area where you would like help or coaching?
  • What’s an aspect of your job you’d like to improve?
  • How can I help you be more effective?
  • What is something I can do better?
  • What have past managers done that you’d like me to do as well?
Why have one-on-ones with your employees?

One-on-one meetings have many benefits:

  • Help employees build better relationships with their managers 
  • Provide opportunities for coaching and training
  • Encourage employees to feel valued at work
  • Discuss performance and areas of improvement
  • Find out what employees are (and are not) excited about
  • Learn how managers can better help employees
Who should set the agenda for a one-on-one meeting?

It’s good for the employee to feel ownership of their one-on-one because the meeting is primarily for their benefit. So, rather than having a manager set the agenda every time, the majority of the agenda should be driven by the employee. Of course, there should still be opportunities for managers to lead the conversation, especially when it comes to topics like coaching and performance. Using a meeting notes app that allows for easy, collaborative agendas can help.

Should one-on-one be hyphenated?

Yes. The word one-on-one is always hyphenated, regardless of whether it is used as a noun, adjective, and adverb.

What are other ways to spell one-on-one?

Writing all three hyphenated words out as one-on-one can be tedious. For brevity in your calendar invites, try using: "1:1" or "Name <> Name."

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