The Effective Exec Team Meeting: A Step-by-Step Guide with Agenda for Executive Meetings

By Ted Skinner

dateSat, Jun 24, 2023 @ 07:00 AM

There is a lot of pressure on executive teams to perform well. Not only do they need to achieve their own goals, but they also need to ensure that the rest of the company is moving in the right direction and hitting its strategic objectives. This can be daunting, but it becomes much easier if you have a plan for your executive team meetings. 

Focusing on productive executive team meetings will cascade further into the organization as your weekly departmental meetings focus on strategic initiatives.  

The key to successful executive team meetings is having powerful habits and a focused meeting Rhythm. You must establish the power habit of productivity while maintaining a regular cadence so everyone knows what to expect during each meeting. Here are some steps you can take to create the perfect executive team meeting:

Exec Team Meetings Focus on Actionable Decisions, not Discussions

For example, advance the quality and efficiency of your team's decision-making by sending reading material before meetings. Indicate why gathering members should read them (e.g., to acquire knowledge? deliberation and disagreement? selection making?) 

This prepares people to commit valuable meeting time to choose essential matters. It can help limit the discussion of non-essential issues that are irrelevant to the decision process. Above all, use a "parking lot" to secure a discussion that is not for this time and address it appropriately. This can help ensure that decisions are made faster, with greater clarity and accuracy.

Executive Team Meeting iStock-1370734259

It is also essential to clearly understand the decision-making process- who will be involved in the decision and what criteria or resources should be used throughout the process. Documenting findings as they are made allows for an efficient review of the decision in the future and more effective decision-making overall.

By focusing on actionable decisions and not discussions, teams can be more productive and efficient in their approach to problem-solving. This leads to better decision-making outcomes for all stakeholders involved.

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Get Important Issues off the Agenda Quickly

Work on the most important decisions first while the energy is high. Ensure that these critical issues get the time that they deserve; if it means that you don't get to discuss a less critical strategic initiative, you can review it next week or set up another time. Develop clear timetables detailing when and how participants will decide on each issue and who will approve the final strategy.

Your executive team should prioritize agenda items to ensure that all pressing matters are addressed and discussed orderly. Build the muscle of adding agenda items in advance. During this process, hold yourself accountable for choosing which topics you will discuss at each meeting and how much time each case deserves.

Seven Steps To Get More Value From Your Exec Team Meetings

  1. Set Clear Goals and Meeting Objectives: Before the forum, you must set clear and measurable goals for what you want to achieve from the session. This will help ensure that everyone knows exactly what to do to accomplish their objectives.

  2. Choose an Appropriate Meeting Venue: Choose a venue for your meeting that is comfortable and conducive to productive discussion. Consider things like noise levels, room size, internet accessibility, and other amenities that may be needed for your team.

  3. Establish an Agenda: An agenda is essential for any successful meeting. Ensure the plan includes all relevant topics you want to discuss at the meeting and provide plenty of time to discuss each point.

  4. Prepare Discussion Materials: Before the team arrives at the meeting, prepare materials you will need during the session, such as presentations, charts or graphs, notes from previous meetings, etc. This will help ensure everyone has access to necessary information while ensuring everything runs smoothly and efficiently throughout the session.

  5. Assign Meeting Leaders: For large teams, assigning leaders at the beginning of the meeting is essential. This will help ensure that everyone's voice is heard during the session and can prevent any one participant from dominating discussions.

  6. Encourage Open Discussion: Create an environment where everyone can give input and contribute ideas without feeling intimidated or judged. This should be a collaborative effort, not just a lecture from the team leader. Use the term spicy to prepare everyone for the depth of discussion. 

  7. Follow-Up After Meetings: To ensure that goals are met, and objectives followed up, it is important to have follow-up meetings after each session. During this time, review progress made since the last meeting, address any obstacles encountered and plan for future meetings as needed.

Creating a culture of effective decision-making is key to any successful business. By following the steps outlined above, you can create an open and productive atmosphere that will allow your team meetings to be more efficient and effective in reaching the desired outcome. Utilizing proper techniques such as setting clear goals, establishing agendas, and encouraging open discussion will help ensure your executive team meeting is successful. With this approach, you can improve decision-making within your organization and bring it closer to achieving its desired goals.

Effective executive team meetings are crucial for the success of any organization. By following the seven steps outlined in this blog post, including focusing on actionable decisions, getting important issues off the agenda quickly, setting clear goals and meeting objectives, choosing an appropriate meeting venue, establishing an agenda, preparing discussion materials, assigning meeting leaders, and encouraging open discussion, executive teams can create a culture of effective decision-making and improve overall productivity. Implementing these strategies will not only benefit the executive team but also have a positive impact on the rest of the company. 


Good luck!

Ted Skinner  



Additional Rhythm Systems Executive Meeting Resources:

How to Conduct a Weekly Strategy Meeting

Weekly Adjustment Meetings vs. Weekly Status Meetings (Infographic)

8 Ways to Make Weekly Meetings Strategic vs. Tactical (Video)

Management Meeting Agenda: Make Your Management Meetings More Effective





Ted Skinner


Photo Credit: iStock by Getty Images