Every time you hold an important meeting, you should create a proper meeting agenda before the beginning of the meeting. This is not just a stuffy old formality, it is a way of keeping your meetings short, streamlined, efficient and driven, all of which are important if you want to really want to get things moving in your direction.
Step 1: Explain the purpose of your meeting in fewer than 4 sentences
Start by giving your meeting agenda a simple title. Show your reader that they are reading the agenda (as opposed to a summary or minutes from a previous meeting) and show them what the meeting is about. Make it simple.
Don’t forget to include basic details, such as date, time, location and expected attendees. Readers want these details almost instantly, so make sure that they are clear.
Write a short summary stating the objective of the meeting. Whilst this should expand upon your title, it should still be very concise (about 1 – 4 sentences). If you can’t explain the purpose of your meeting in fewer than 4 sentences, then you probably need to spend more time considering what your meeting is for, and what you are hoping to get out of it.
Step 2: Focus on the structure
Once you have completed the basics, it is time to focus on the real structure of your meeting agenda. You need to make separate sections for each different order of business. You may want to consider creating an estimated timeframe for each of the sections. This can help you to prevent your meeting from overrunning.
If you are planning on having special guest speakers or presentations as part of your meeting, find out from the speaker just how long they will need, so you can schedule around this.
Step 3: Make it collaborative
If a lot of people are attending, ask your guests if they have any specific items that need to be added to the agenda. Knowing about their items in advance, can help to stop them from hijacking the meeting, and taking time away from other items which have actually been penciled in.
Your meeting should be distributed to attendees in good time before the meeting, so that they can correct any mistakes or dispute any of your plans. Make sure that you double check the agenda before you send it out to your attendees – silly spelling mistakes and trivial errors will look unprofessional.
As well as including all of the new things you want to talk about, you can also include recaps. If this is part of a regular series of meetings, include time at the beginning to discuss action points from the previous session. You may also want to include a brief recap section at the end of the meeting.
100+ ressources you might find useful
Find inspiration for your meeting agenda by considering what you hope to get out of the meeting. Think about what needs to be discussed and why it needs to be discussed. If this meeting is part of a series of regular meetings, always look at minutes from the last meeting, to see what is expected from this event.
If you are really struggling to find inspiration, here is some ressources you can use:
So now you know the 3 steps. It’s time to create your meeting agenda the easiest way with Solid, the only meeting management app integrated with Google, Slack & Evernote. Signup for the Solid Beta now !