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You can find an introduction to Team Cadence Meetings in Chapter 17 of Where the Action Is. These resources will help you plan, run, and troubleshoot the specific Team Cadence Meetings your team needs.

Definition

Team Cadence Meetings are used to keep teams aligned towards a common goal, to keep everyone informed, and to ensure work momentum.

Questions Answered

  • Since our last team meeting: What’s been done?
  • What still needs doing? What’s changed?
  • What do we need to focus on next?

Examples

  • The Weekly Team Meeting
  • The Daily Huddle
  • The Shift-Change Meeting
  • A Regular Committee Meeting
  • A Working Session

Purpose

  • Ensure group cohesion.
  • Drive execution.
  • Clarify immediate next steps.

Work Outcomes

  • Clarity about what everyone is doing.
  • Help solve anything preventing work completion.
  • Information about circumstances affecting the planned work.
  • Visibility into significant victories or setbacks.
  • Documented decisions and action items.

Human Outcomes

  • Increased trust.
  • Connection to the group’s shared mission.
  • A sense of belonging and of being valued by other team members.
  • An appropriate sense of urgency to get work done.

Meeting Agenda Templates and Guides

Agile Standup Meeting

Elise Keith - Fast, structured, and to-the-point, the agile stand-up is meant to keep a team fully in-synch on fast moving projects. As you might guess from the name, the "stand-up" was originally designed for teams that would stand up together in front of the board where they track their work using sticky notes. Most commonly... [ more ]

Cross-Functional Weekly Update

Elise Keith - This is the meeting agenda template the team at Lucid Meetings uses to run our weekly meetings. Needless to say, we think this format works pretty darn well. This meeting agenda template brings together leaders from different departments to share updates and reinforce their connections to the company and each other... [ more ]

Daily Leadership Huddle

Elise Keith - The Daily Huddle keeps management teams coordinated, focused, accountable and efficient. Lasting just 10 to 15 minutes, a Daily Huddles ensures everyone knows what’s going on each day. The Huddle also provides a fast way to get quick answers to any cross-functional questions. Use this meeting agenda template as a... [ more ]

Monthly + Anytime Decision Making

Elise Keith - This meeting agenda template explains how to prepare for and run a solid decision making meeting. This straightforward process walks your team through the critical decision making steps. It doesn’t rely on any specific analytical frameworks or fancy group exercises. You can run this meeting as is, or use it as a... [ more ]

Quarterly Strategic Refresh

Elise Keith - During this meeting, teams review their strategic progress and establish targets for the next 90 days. Part retrospective, part working session, and part time-out, running a Quarterly Refresh makes sure your organization’s strategy stays present in everyone’s mind, up-to-date with changes in your environment, and... [ more ]

Remote Team Check-In

Elise Keith - This meeting agenda template is inspired by Wade Foster's blog post about how the distributed team at Zapier keeps their work in synch and their team connected when meeting from different time zones. This meeting agenda template is best suited for small teams (10 or fewer people) who enjoy communicating in writing.

Strategic Plan Refresher

Paul Axtell - All strategic plans become outdated quickly, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to start over. This relatively short meeting agenda template will help your team identify important changes in your circumstances and knowledge that you can use to refresh your strategy and keep it relevant.

Weekly Leadership Team Meeting

Elise Keith - Held at the same time and day each week, teams use this meeting to drive accountability and resolve issues impeding progress. This is an action-oriented working meeting rather than a reporting and information sharing meeting. The agenda leaves no time for reading reports or explaining delays. Instead, the time is... [ more ]

Lucid Blog Posts

Elise Keith (2018). Embracing core competencies, like defining the meeting purpose up front, and the use of an effective meeting structure work to encourage meeting engagement and productive energy. Beyond these basics, there are five key steps meeting designers can follow to increase meeting engagement.

Elise Keith (2018). A real-time agenda is a process for co-creating, prioritizing and discussing a list of topics in real time.

Elise Keith (2018). Ground rules give you a tool you can use when someone goes too long. This means the burden and the power to manage the conversation falls not just on the meeting leader - ground rules give everyone on the team a tool they can use!

Elise Keith (2017). The way a team talks about their work changes the work. If we talk about the big strategic challenges the same way we approach our day-to-day tasks, we waste unnecessary time on the small items and give the big ones short shrift.

Elise Keith (2017). Any time there is an opportunity to quickly get information from the group all at once, do so in the meeting. This will save lots of time chasing email back and forth, and reinforce the group note taking habit.

Elise Keith (2016). A team’s regularly scheduled meetings should maintain work momentum and strengthen the relationships between team members. The frequency of these regular meetings sets the team’s work cadence.

Paul Axtell (2015). When you call on people, think of it as an invitation to speak. Invitations can be declined without consequence. So invite people to contribute to the conversation, but make sure your tone of voice and language correctly imply that it’s fine if they do not.

Elise Keith (2015). A deeper look at the stand-up and the common-but-wrong ideas you may have heard about them. For anyone considering stand-ups for their team, and for those that tried stand-ups but never felt confident about how they worked, this article is for you.

Elise Keith (2015). Here are 4 approaches to running remote team status meetings that work. Each one emphasizes different team values and work goals. Use any of them and you’ll get a project status meeting that sure beats the shiznit out of watching paint dry.

Chris Higgins (2014). When you run online meetings with people who are located in different parts of the world, it's crucial that you help your team make a human connection. "Icebreakers" are just the ticket: short team-building exercises conducted at the beginning of a meeting.

Glossary of Meeting Terms

General Term

A meeting cadence is a pattern of regular team meetings. Short, frequent meetings increase a team's work momentum. Groups that provide oversight, such as boards and committees, hold longer meetings less frequently.
A standing meeting is any meeting that repeats on a predictable basis and creates an ongoing obligation on participant's calendars. For example, you may have a standing meeting with your boss every Tuesday at 2pm. A...

Technique

A check-in is a technique used at the beginning of a meeting to give everyone an opportunity to speak, and during meeting transitions to survey the group's current status. The simplest check-in is simply to ask each...
The one-phrase close is a technique used to end team meetings. Before the group leaves the meeting, each person takes a turn sharing one word or phrase about how they're feeling regarding the work completed during...
A meeting where everyone stands up rather than sits down is called a standing meeting. Standing is meant to help keep the meeting short, as no one gets too comfortable. Daily Huddles are often conducted as standing...
Virtual icebreakers are team-building exercises conducted during a meeting with attendees that are not in the same location. They help your team make a human connection, and can be especially useful when you run...
A weather report is a way to run meeting check-ins and check-outs developed by Diana Larsen for teams who meet on weekly basis. During the check-in, each person gives their weather report for the previous week’s...