The all-hands meeting is a staple of many companies. While the first all-hands meetings were held in person, many organizations are enjoying the benefits of holding their all-hands meetings online. Let’s take a deep dive into this type of meeting – including its purpose, agenda, planning, and more.
What is an all-hands meeting?
An all-hands meeting is a company-wide meeting that assembles all employees of an organization at one time. Also known as a town hall meeting or company forum, this type of meeting provides the opportunity to communicate with all employees the goals and current state of the organization. All-hands meetings are typically led by the CEO or another member of the executive team.
More and more, these meetings are turning virtual or hybrid. With certain advances in technology, all hands meetings can be held in virtual meeting spaces – which makes it much easier to bring all team members together, regardless of where they’re located. Benefits of holding virtual all-hands meetings can include:
- They can be more cost-effective than in-person staff meetings.
- Employees can attend the meeting from anywhere in the world.
- You can record meetings and share them with employees who are unable to attend.
Keep Reading: How to organize a town hall meeting for work
What is the purpose of an all-hands meeting?
Organizations hold all-hands meetings for many reasons, and they may have multiple purposes for holding a single meeting.
If you’re looking for all-hands meeting ideas or goals, here are some good places to start:
- To share company news and updates: This can be useful when breaking big company news (like winning a new contract, sharing customer stories, surpassing a revenue goal, acquiring a new company, or launching a new product).
- To communicate changes: All-hands meetings can be used to communicate changes within the organization, such as new policies or company vision. This is especially important when changes will have an impact on all employees.
- To address concerns or issues: All-hands meetings provide a forum for employees to voice their concerns or issues. This is an opportunity for management to listen to employee feedback and address any issues.
- To recognize employee achievements: All-hands meetings provide a great platform to publicly recognize and celebrate employees’ achievements. This can help build up employee morale and boost motivation.
- To unveil new products or initiatives: All-hands meetings are often used to introduce new products or initiatives. This is a way to get all employees on board with the new product or initiative and create enthusiasm.
- To provide a podium for employees: All-hands meetings can give employees the chance to voice their opinions, share their concerns, and provide their input. This feedback can be helpful for management and foster a feeling of inclusion.
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What should be included in an all-hands meeting agenda?
A generic all-hands meeting agenda template wouldn’t work for all organizations. That’s because specific agendas depend on the purpose of the meeting. However, there are some elements that are typically included in most all-hands meeting templates:
- Opening remarks from the CEO or other leadership team member
- Company announcements and updates
- Main presentation or discussion
- Q&A session
- Employee recognition
- Closing remarks
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How to run an all-hands meeting
A virtual all-hands meeting is not the same as a physical all-hands meeting, so you should approach them differently. This is because one will require a heavier emphasis on technology, while the other will require a heavier emphasis on physical accommodations. Here are some tips for running a successful all-hands meeting online:
1. Have a clear purpose: Having a clear purpose helps to plan a meeting that holds attendees’ attention. Without a clear purpose, you risk having a meeting that loses its focus and meanders.
2. Utilize breakout rooms: Breakout rooms allow you to divide the meeting into smaller groups. This is helpful for facilitating more targeted discussions and can give all attendees a chance to be heard.
3. Use polls and surveys: Polls and surveys can be a great way to engage employees in a virtual all-hands meeting. You can use them to gather feedback or to gauge employees’ opinions on a particular topic.
4. Keep it interactive: Virtual all-hands meetings have the potential to be highly interactive. Keeping remote meetings interactive can help attendees feel more involved and increase engagement.
5. Leave the tech to the professionals: Doing this relieves you of the technological concerns that come with using mainstream virtual meeting platforms (like Google Meet or Zoom) that are typically not suited for larger events. As a result, you can spend your time focusing on the content.
Need help organizing a virtual all-hands meeting?
At ICV Digital Media, we take town hall meetings to that next level. We eliminate the need for inflexible 3rd party video tools with a custom-built virtual meeting platform. With this platform, you can easily manage agendas, invites, streaming, feedback, hosting, and more.
If you’d like to learn more about this service, give us a call or reach out to us online. We’d love to talk.