Any suggestions on how to best run an All-Hands meeting with the whole company? Around 20 people? What are some best practices you’ve found to be helpful?
What are you trying to achieve with the all hands?
Team-wide alignment on what each team is doing, time to brainstorm company-wide issues, and giving people time to mingle with each other (small talk).
For our weekly all hands meeting, my company:
- Some chit chat waiting for the meeting to start.
- CEO calls on each department for a weekly update on projects, metrics, progress towards goals, announcements, etc. Everyone should prepare some notes for this. We typically always go in the same order.
- CEO ends with his update
- CEO then makes any other company wide announcements.
In the future, I’d like to start including a short presentation on something that would be helpful for everyone to know. Whether it’s anti-phishing training, writing better email sales copy, etc.
You want the whole company paying attention. Make it fun.
I’ve presented a few times in our All Hands (on Mondays), which we use not just to talk about metrics but also about bigger initiatives & updates from different departments. One thing I’ve appreciated is that anyone speaking does a full run-through with the CEO on the Friday before, and he coaches us on how to improve the quality of what we’re presenting so that it’s polished and communicating at the right level. The influence this has on the quality of our sessions is noticeable.
Good topics are really anything that helps everyone continue to learn in the same direction. I’ve presented takeaways from customer discovery interviews, our Sales team has shared key reasons why current prospects have either signed or delayed, stuff like that.
We made great experiences with doing the input part async. Me or my co-founder record a video update for all company-wide topics.
Each team records a short demo of what was achieved since the last meeting.
The life call is then more of a company-wide retrospective. Teams share questions & topic points they’d love to tackle beforehand.
We then discuss each point and ideally nail action items & owners, if possible.
We usually have 5 min of chit chat in the beginning. We often end with a short optional online game for folks who want to keep socializing
Always start with the same few slides — company mission, vision, values and Big 3 (or whatever) priorities for the year.
If you crave alignment, you can’t repeat this stuff enough.
Thank you all for your suggestions.
We do a monthly Sharing Session. The different teams all put together 3-5 slides on what they worked on the past month. It’s a shared PPT on OneDrive that everyone has access to. We’re an editorial subscription business, so we update across Product, Ad Sales, Print, Digital and Marketing. Execs also might use this to update the teams on what’s going on in other parts of the biz.
Then when the session comes around everyone takes turns to present their section. It’s all handy in one slide deck. We also record the session for anyone who joins later the business later and wants to review the previous calls. This is done remotely over Teams, which I find better for this kind of thing than in person.
Sharing/broadcasting is entirely different to brainstorming and I wouldn’t treat that the same.
You could also do each section in a Loom if you wanted to do really async like some other commenters suggested. But it is nice for everyone to present live and have the opportunity to Q&A.
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