7 Elements for the Perfect Meeting

Do you dread team meetings and feel they are a waste of time? Chances are, you are not conducting them properly, nor regularly enough. When done properly, a ten minute meeting, or “huddle”, with your team every morning WILL accomplish the following:

  • The entire team gets to focus on what needs to get done that day first thing in the morning,
  • Everyone will know what the priorities are to accomplish the team goals,
  • They’ll know who they need to team up with to get them done,
  • and they’ll understand how to better plan the entire day, week, month, or project!   

Meetings are meant to be positive, inspirational, and directional.  A lot of leaders hold staff meetings irregularly, and only because they are noticing mistakes, so they use meetings as the avenue to deal with problems.  AND the meetings tend to go on forever… No wonder no one likes meetings and feel they are a waste of time.

The “Ten-Minute Meeting” 7 ingredient recipe for success 

If you are only conducting meetings as business damage-control, if your meetings last forever, or if you find yourself dreading meetings, try implementing meetings using these 7 key elements. Before you know it, your ten minute meetings will be improving team productivity, keeping employees engaged, improving client service, and ultimately increasing your revenue!

1. Set Strict Rules

Don’t let anyone skip for any reason. All hands on deck shows everyone the importance of the daily meetings. Also, set the meeting for the same time daily, and enforce it. Make it ten minutes and ten minutes only. And the final strict rule: no one sits. Enforcing these rules ensures these “huddles” become a valuable and positive habit over time. 

2. Have a quick agenda

This huddle is a great way to clarify process and to keep everyone aligned with what is most important to accomplish that day. Here is a sample meeting agenda to get you started:

  • 2 minutes: Begin with positives – who has had a big win
  • 2 minutes: Then “who is stuck” and needs help, or share a positive “needs improvement” statement to help the team better their performance
  • 5 minutes: A quick “critical numbers” summary from all who have them – each person reinforces their key project or issue to work on
  • 1 minute: Encourage and inspire everyone as they depart.  Go team ! 

3. Have accountability

For example, each day at 10:00 everyone knows there is a ten minute meeting they must be prepared for. Communicate to your team that they need to have numbers or answers ready or that they will need to review critical points so they are prepared for any questions you ask. This added accountability ensures your team members will take the meetings seriously – no one wants to appear unprepared in front of their peers. As a bonus, your team is always on top of business performance and any issues that may arise!

4. Know your critical numbers

And have your team report on them at each meeting. In other words, what is most important to the company that helps your team know how you are doing each day?  For one company, the 3 critical numbers they report on is the number of website visits, number of sales leads, and number of jobs completed.  What are your critical numbers?  Help the team understand where you are successful and what may need more work.

Not sure what your critical numbers are? Read all about Key Performance Indicators here! 

5. Have every department rotate

Have one team member give a 90 second “what’s new” update in each department, but rotate departments each day. 

6. Use this process religiously 

This goes back to rule #1: enforce strict rules. Make sure you don’t make exceptions or miss meetings – communicate to your team that these meetings are important through your ACTIONS not just your words.

7. No one sits down for this meeting

…Thus the name “huddle”.  This is meant to be a positive, quick, communication alignment meeting to help everyone move in the right direction each day. Standing up ensures everyone stays alert and makes sure the meeting facilitators don’t go over time. 

Enjoy this process, play with it, and get it working for you. Every business is different, so find the right formula for your company, and use these seven steps. When the ten minute meeting is implemented properly and effectively, not only do profits increase, but so does employee engagement AND client service!

Curious about other ways to improve employee engagement? Read this article about improving employee engagement by listening to what your team has to say.


Cindy Piva is Founder and President of Thrive Business Strategies.