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How To Run a Meeting Process Template

Teach your team how to effectively manage meetings from start to finish. Explores pre-meeting prep, meeting facilitation, and post-meeting follow-up for productive outcomes.

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How To Run a Meeting Process Template

Teach your team how to effectively manage meetings from start to finish. Explores pre-meeting prep, meeting facilitation, and post-meeting follow-up for productive outcomes.


Why We Have a Process About Running Meetings

At our company, we recognize the importance of your time and contributions, which is why we have established a structured process for running meetings. This process ensures that our gatherings are both productive and effective, essential for facilitating clear communication, making informed decisions, and aligning all team members with our projects and organizational goals.

Without a clear process, meetings can often become unproductive and may not achieve their intended objectives. By standardizing how we prepare, conduct, and follow up on meetings, we set clear expectations that help make every meeting purpose-driven and results-oriented. This not only streamlines our communication and decision-making processes but also significantly reduces time wasted in unstructured discussions, thus improving our overall efficiency.

We are committed to fostering a culture where every individual's time and input are valued. Adhering to this meeting process enhances our ability to collaborate effectively, drives better outcomes, and maintains a high level of professionalism and effectiveness in our internal communications.

Pre-Meeting Preparation

Purpose and Agenda

In the pre-meeting preparation phase, our primary focus is on setting a clear direction and providing a roadmap for our discussions, which is why defining the objective and creating a precise agenda are crucial steps.

Objective Definition: Every meeting must have a well-defined purpose and set objectives. This ensures that the time we spend together is targeted and meaningful. By clearly defining what we aim to achieve, we can maintain a focused discussion, make efficient use of our time, and ensure that every participant understands the meeting's importance and their role in it.

Agenda Creation: Once the objectives are set, drafting a clear and concise agenda is the next critical step. This agenda should then be distributed in advance to all participants. A well-structured agenda outlines the topics to be discussed, allocates time for each item, and sets the order of discussion. This preparation allows participants to come to the meeting well-informed and ready to contribute effectively, ensuring a smooth and productive session.

Check out our process for creating meeting agendas if you want more information. 

Logistics Setup

For in-person meetings in our office, ensuring the seamless arrangement of logistics is essential to facilitate an efficient and comfortable meeting environment. This involves several key components that contribute to the smooth execution of our meetings.

Room Booking: Securing the right space is crucial. We book an appropriate meeting room well in advance to accommodate all participants comfortably. This includes ensuring the room is equipped with necessary seating and is accessible to everyone involved.

Equipment Setup: We equip the room with all necessary technological tools, such as projectors, screens, and teleconferencing equipment, to support visual presentations and remote participation if needed. Ensuring these tools are operational before the meeting starts avoids delays and technical issues.

By handling these logistics effectively, we create an environment that promotes focus, engagement, and collaboration among all attendees.

Participant Invitation

In our commitment to efficiency and respect for everyone's time, careful consideration goes into the invitation process for our meetings. It's crucial to ensure that every participant invited is essential to the meeting's objectives.

Participant Selection: We carefully select attendees based on their involvement with the agenda items and their ability to contribute to the decision-making process. This focused approach helps prevent overcrowding in meetings and avoids wasting the time of those who may not need to be directly involved. (No one should have to say “This meeting could have been an email.”)

Sending Invites: Once we identify the necessary participants, we send out invitations that include the meeting agenda, objectives, time, location, and any preparatory materials needed. This advance notice helps attendees prepare effectively, ensuring they can contribute meaningfully to the discussions. We use Google Calendar to send invites.

By thoughtfully considering who needs to be at the meeting, we not only streamline our discussions and enhance productivity but also demonstrate our respect for the time and workload of all team members. This careful selection process ensures that every meeting is purposeful and productive.

Material Preparation

Preparing materials in advance is a vital step in our meeting process, ensuring that all participants have the necessary information to engage effectively in discussions. This preparation involves gathering and distributing any relevant documents, reports, or data that will be reviewed during the meeting. We ensure these materials are clear, concise, and pertinent to the topics at hand. By distributing these materials ahead of time, we give attendees the opportunity to review and formulate thoughts and questions, facilitating a more informed and productive discussion. This proactive approach helps maximize the efficiency of our meetings and enhances the decision-making process.

For Remote/Hybrid Meetings

For remote or hybrid meetings, where participants join from various locations, the logistics setup differs significantly to accommodate virtual engagement, using Zoom as our standard communication platform.

Technology Setup: Ensuring all participants have access to Zoom and are familiar with its features is crucial. We provide guidelines and necessary support for using Zoom effectively, including managing audio/video settings and utilizing features like screen sharing and breakout rooms.

Virtual Environment: We create a virtual meeting space that is conducive to focused discussions. This involves encouraging participants to find quiet, interruption-free zones while attending the meeting. We also recommend using headsets for better sound quality and minimizing background noise.

Meeting Access: Invitations include a Zoom link, meeting ID, and clear instructions on how to join the session. We conduct a quick tech check before the meeting to resolve any connectivity or access issues, ensuring everyone can participate without technical difficulties.

By adapting our logistics to the demands of remote and hybrid formats, we maintain high levels of productivity and engagement, ensuring that all meetings are effective, regardless of the physical presence of the participants.

During the Meeting

Starting the Meeting

Starting the meeting effectively sets the tone for the session and ensures it runs smoothly. We begin by welcoming all participants and quickly establishing a professional yet friendly atmosphere. This initial interaction is crucial as it fosters a collaborative environment right from the start.

Opening Remarks: The meeting leader opens with a brief overview, reiterating the purpose and objectives of the meeting to align everyone's focus and expectations.

Role Assignments: To facilitate a structured meeting, we assign specific roles such as note-taker or timekeeper. This helps in managing the meeting efficiently and ensures all logistical aspects are covered.

Agenda Review: We then review the agenda together, allowing participants to understand the flow of the meeting and prepare for the discussions ahead. This step also provides an opportunity to make any last-minute adjustments to the agenda based on participant feedback or priorities.

By meticulously handling the start of the meeting, we ensure a productive and orderly discussion, conducive to achieving the set objectives.

Facilitation and Time Management

Effective facilitation and stringent time management are critical during the meeting to ensure that discussions are productive and objectives are met within the allotted time.

Facilitation: The meeting facilitator plays a crucial role in guiding the discussion, ensuring that it remains on topic and that all relevant points are covered. They encourage participation from all attendees, making sure that everyone has the opportunity to contribute, which fosters a collaborative atmosphere. The facilitator also handles any conflicts or divergences in views, steering the conversation back to the agenda items constructively.

Time Management: We strictly adhere to the times allocated for each agenda item to avoid overruns that could lead to rushed discussions or unfinished business. The facilitator, along with the assigned timekeeper, monitors the progress against the agenda, providing gentle reminders to keep the meeting on track. This discipline ensures that all topics receive adequate attention and that the meeting concludes on time, respecting everyone’s schedules.

By maintaining focused facilitation and effective time management, we maximize the productivity of our meetings and ensure a disciplined approach to decision-making and discussion.


Encouraging active engagement from all attendees is essential for harnessing diverse viewpoints and enriching discussions. To achieve this, we employ several strategies:

  1. Open Questions: We use open-ended questions to invite expansive thinking and multiple perspectives, avoiding yes/no questions that limit discussion.
  2. Round-Robin Feedback: During key discussion points, we ensure everyone has a chance to speak by implementing a round-robin approach, which systematically gives each participant the floor.
  3. Encouraging Quiet Participants: We actively encourage quieter members to share their thoughts, ensuring they feel comfortable and valued.
  4. Using Visual Aids: Interactive tools and visual aids help maintain interest and engagement, making it easier for participants to contribute.

These approaches foster a dynamic and inclusive environment, ensuring all voices are heard and considered.


Note-taking is a crucial aspect of our meetings, serving as an official record that captures key decisions, action items, and responsibilities. We designate a note-taker for each meeting to ensure accuracy and thoroughness. The note-taker is responsible for documenting the discussions succinctly, focusing on outcomes, agreements, and specific commitments made during the meeting. 

These notes are structured to reflect the agenda for easy reference and follow-up. After the meeting, the finalized minutes are promptly distributed to all attendees and relevant stakeholders. This not only helps in keeping everyone aligned but also ensures accountability and facilitates effective follow-up on action items.

Concluding the Meeting

Concluding the meeting effectively is as crucial as its initiation and execution. It ensures clarity and alignment on the decisions made and the next steps to be taken.

Summary of Outcomes: As the meeting draws to a close, the facilitator summarizes the key outcomes and decisions to reinforce understanding and commitment. This recap helps solidify the achievements of the meeting and ensures that everyone leaves with a clear understanding of what was agreed upon.

Next Steps: Clarifying the next steps is essential for maintaining momentum post-meeting. The facilitator explicitly outlines the actions to be taken, assigns responsibilities, and sets deadlines. This task allocation is crucial for accountability and ensures that each participant knows their specific roles moving forward.

Feedback: We gather immediate feedback on the meeting’s effectiveness to continually improve our processes. Participants are encouraged to provide insights into what worked well and what could be improved. This feedback is invaluable for enhancing the efficiency and productivity of future meetings.

Closure: The meeting officially ends with a thank you to all participants for their contributions and time. This not only shows appreciation but also reinforces the collaborative spirit of our company culture.

By meticulously concluding our meetings, we ensure clarity, accountability, and preparedness for future actions, thereby maximizing the productivity and impact of our gatherings.

Post-meeting Tasks

Follow-up and Reporting

Effective follow-up and reporting are critical to ensuring the productivity of meetings translates into actionable results. Here’s how we handle this crucial phase:

Minutes Distribution: Immediately after the meeting, the note-taker finalizes the minutes, which document all key decisions, assigned action items, and deadlines. These minutes are then distributed to all participants and relevant stakeholders to ensure everyone is on the same page and to facilitate transparency within the organization.

Follow-Up: To maintain momentum, the facilitator or a designated team member monitors the progress of action items. Regular check-ins are scheduled to address any challenges and to provide support where necessary. This ongoing oversight helps keep tasks on track and participants accountable.

Reporting: Significant decisions and progress reports are escalated to higher management. This reporting is crucial for strategic alignment and allows senior leaders to provide input or redirect efforts if needed.

Through diligent follow-up and thorough reporting, we ensure that our meetings lead to effective outcomes and continuous improvement in our operational processes.


Have Questions?

This comprehensive guide on running meetings is designed to optimize our internal communication and decision-making processes. By adhering to these structured steps, from pre-meeting preparation to post-meeting follow-up, we ensure that our meetings are both productive and purposeful. This not only enhances our operational efficiency but also fosters a collaborative and respectful work environment. 

Should you have any questions about the meeting process or require further clarification on any aspect, please do not hesitate to reach out to our Human Resources department.

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