Team meetings are one of the best opportunities to create alignment and visibility across an organization. How they are run can also be massively influential on company culture, enabling culture to be a key driver of success.
We surveyed professionals across many top organizations—including Shopify, Trello, Drift, Miro, Calendly, and Etsy—to figure out how high-performing teams run their meetings.
Along with these sample team meeting agendas, here are seven habits to help your team grow and become more productive and aligned.
Keep It Real
Creating a culture of transparency is difficult. However, when your leaders are honest and share insights without constraints, it allows the rest of the team to build on that knowledge and grow, which in turn improves team productivity and collaboration. If your team is able to create a culture where everyone's opinion is valued, you'll find more cohesion and inspire everyone to strive for growth.
Be Upfront About Who, How, and Why
If organizations with smooth and effective team meetings are more likely to be efficient and productive in other areas too, the opposite is also true. When run poorly, these business meetings can be a big waste of time, and one that sets a dangerous tone for the organization overall. That’s why it is critical to have clear communication about the meeting's purpose, agenda, goals, and what outcomes are expected.
Always Have an Agenda. Always Share It
Having a great staff meeting begins before the meeting starts. A well-organized meeting has a solid meeting agenda. Because team meetings are usually recurring (weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc...) you should invest in creating an agenda template that lists out common agenda topics. That way you can always be ready for your next meeting.
(Don't worry, we have a lot of agenda templates for you to copy or download as Google Docs, Word Docs (.docx) or use for your meetings in Hugo.)
Document Action Items and Assign Them
A good team meeting template also leaves room to document action items within the meeting notes. If you want tasks from your meeting to get accomplished, make sure you note those action items!
Upskill Your Team
While it's not efficient to spend the majority of team meeting time mentoring and coaching, the occasional deep dive into data, learnings, or strategy can be of major benefit. Team meetings aren't just for giving status updates, they're to help the team learn and grow together. Keep an eye out for opportunities to upskill everyone.
End Early (When You Can)
Let your team know you value their time. Endless meetings not only take up time, they suck the energy out of team members, disrupting their productivity for hours afterward. Try to schedule meetings in clusters to minimize disruption, and then end them early when you can.
At Hugo, we use a Ten Percent Rule, giving employees only 4 hours of total meeting time per week. This self-imposed scarcity of meeting time ensures that ever second is used wisely.
Get your team meeting template
On this page, we’ve compiled agenda templates for the most common types of team meetings. From quick stand-ups, to weekly planning meetings, brainstorming, and post-mortems, there are a lot of reasons for teams to meet together.
Below you can find a selection of sample agendas for all these common types of team meetings pulled for our free library of 80+ meeting agenda templates. (Or, scroll back up and download the whole bundle of team meeting templates.)
Each agenda template is available to copy as a Google Doc, download as a Word doc, or use with your free Hugo account.