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Choosing the Right Meeting Cadence for Your Team

Choosing the proper meeting cadence can be critical to running an effective team. Holding meetings regularly is essential, but so is not drowning your team in meetings, so much so that it starts affecting their productivity.

In simple terms, meeting cadence refers to the frequency of meetings in your organization.

Choosing the proper meeting cadence can be critical to running an effective team. Holding meetings regularly is essential, but so is not drowning your team in meetings, so much so that it starts affecting their productivity.

In this blog post, we will look at the benefits of having a good meeting cadence, factors affecting meeting cadences, and how to choose meeting cadences based on the types of meetings.

So let's jump in.

Benefits of having good meeting cadence

  • It tends to keep the communication lines flowing.
  • It makes your team more productive by keeping them accountable.
  • It helps improve cross-team coordination and synergy.
  • It brings all stakeholders on the same page.
  • It reduces meeting fatigue and loss of productivity.

Factors affecting meeting cadence

Like several other multi-member activities in the workplace, meeting cadences are also subject to a few variables.

Some of the primary ones are:

  • Nature of work: If the project requires an update and review often where it has to be ensured that everyone's on the same page, then the meeting cadence would be much more frequent than for a project where the project is essentially a la carte in nature.
  • Size of your team: If you are a team of 2 or 3 members, then a simple voice call/slack message thread suffices for updates. However, more frequent team meetings are warranted if there are more members from different functions.
  • Company's culture: If your team has a culture that allows more agency, team meeting frequency might be lower than otherwise. However, if the culture warrants dependency on constant updates from other stakeholders, then meetings might be more common.
  • Composition of the team: If your team is primarily composed of experienced practitioners, then meetings might be reserved mostly for edge cases instead of a team with more inexperienced talent. The same logic holds good regarding familiarity with the core operations of the organization/team.
  • Opportunity cost: If the opportunity cost of having a team meeting is higher than missing it, then the cadence of that meeting can be significantly reduced and vice-versa.

Meeting cadences based on their types

Certain types of meetings fit a specific function or purpose with a matching cadence. For example, "Revenue projection" meetings should not be held every day, just like how "Sprint update" meetings should not be held every quarter.

Let's look at cadences and the ideal types of meetings that will fit them. Remember that this is not an exhaustive list of meeting types but an indication of the nature of these meetings.

Yearly meetings

  • Culture assessment meeting
  • Vision reinforcement meeting
  • Appraisal 1:1 meeting
  • Infrastructure planning meeting

Quarterly meetings

  • Quarter planning meeting
  • Business review meeting
  • Customer success meeting
  • Board meeting
  • All-hands meeting
  • Cost analysis meeting
  • Hiring strategy meeting
  • Tools review meeting

Monthly meetings

  • 1:1 meeting
  • Department review meeting
  • Project review meeting
  • Sprint meeting
  • Content strategy meeting
  • Growth analysis meeting
  • Brainstorming meeting

Weekly meetings

  • Weekly performance review meeting
  • Cross-team update meeting
  • Marketing & sales meeting
  • War rooms
  • Leadership and executive team meeting

Daily meetings

  • Daily updates meeting
  • Agile meeting
  • Sales catchup meeting

Based on the type of meeting, you now have a baseline on what could be their cadence.

Questions to ask yourself about meeting cadence

You can ask yourself a few questions to arrive at the correct meeting cadence for your organization/team. Here are a few:

  1. Does the team or team's operations do well with asynchronous communication tools?
  2. Will meetings affect the productivity of those who gain the least from them?
  3. Do your everyday tasks require updates from all other team members?
  4. Can the sprint move forward largely independently with siloed teams, or will the need for cross-functional operations be frequent?
  5. Can XYZ meetings be less frequent?
  6. What does my team think about the cadence of these meetings?

Conclusion

And with that, we come to the end of this post. Meeting cadence is something that, as a leader, you must get right. Did we miss anything? Let us know on Twitter @RoutineHQ. Thanks for reading.

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