All Hands On Deck? Here's How To Think About Successful Companywide Meetings
Updated: Mar 2
Some companies hold all-employee meetings monthly, some quarterly, and some annually. What’s the best cadence? What’s the best format?
Of course, there's no one answer to these questions. It depends on the size of your company, how many offices you are spread across, the industry you're in, and what you want to accomplish with the meetings.
The substance of your employee meeting will also vary depending on your company's needs. Some companies use all-hands meetings as a way to update employees on the latest news and announcements. Others use them as a chance to brainstorm ideas or get feedback from employees. Still others use them as a combination of both.
And of course, post-2020, no discussion of company meetings is complete without talking about how you will integrate remote employees into the meeting. This isn't a new topic - companies with multiple offices have long had to struggle with how to connect different offices. To make sure that your company meeting doesn't look like the launch of Dunder Mifflin Infinity, think long and hard about the user experience and technology that goes into your meetings - and whether it may be better to have separate meetings for different offices. Of course, employees that work from home will have to remote in regardless - make sure to think about their experience as well as those that are physically in the office.
No matter what cadence or format you choose for your companywide meetings, there are a few things you can do to make sure they're successful.
First, make sure you have a clear agenda for the meeting. This will help everyone stay focused and on track. It's usually best to have different members of the leadership team or staff present at the meeting, so that the meeting doesn't come across as a TED talk.
Second, give employees plenty of notice about the meeting so they can block off the time in their calendars.
Third, provide adequate time for interactions, questions and discussion. Polls and quizzes often are effective ways to keep people interested and engaged.
And finally, follow up after the meeting with any action items or decisions that were made.
It's important to find a balance that works for your company when it comes to holding employee meetings. If you hold them too often, they can become a burden or a source of frustration for employees. But if you don't hold them often enough, you may not be able to effectively communicate important information or get the feedback you need.
Company meetings are an important part of the communication strategy of any organization, as well as an opportunity to showcase company culture and drive employee engagement. Done wrong, they can be a real drag but done right will be something your employees look forward to!