How to Create Meeting Agendas That Work

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Here’s a little hack we’ve been using for our meeting agendas. We host most of our live meetings over Zoom because we have team members all over the world.

But when you have a lot of people, with a lot to say on a Zoom call, it can be like the Brady Bunch intro.

Things can get unruly if you don’t have an agenda.

We tried several different agenda tools and none of them did what we wanted, which meant they were never fully adopted (unlike the Bradys).

In the end we did what we often do, we used something in an “off-label” way.

First we tried using Cisco Spark Notes and while it has a Slack integration, it’s still a separate web app and one more place to login, plus it isn’t mobile friendly.

We really wanted something that was already in Slack to avoid having to switch around and add another tool. So for a while we were using the built-in option to create posts. They are basically mini blog posts that live in Slack. It worked pretty well, anyone could edit it and add their items, and it was accessible from anywhere you could access Slack.

The problem was that someone had to create that post each week, name it properly so it could be found using search, and people had to add notes, with their names so you knew who added it. Finally, you couldn’t edit posts from your mobile device.

We were getting frustrated…

Enter To-Do Bot

It turned out to be the perfect solution. Now anyone, from any device could add a “to-do” item by simple saying /todo. They just had to put the name of the item, the person responsible for it and when it was “due.”

So for example if I wanted our hiring manager to talk about our new background check software at our weekly huddle on Wednesdays, I could just write

/todo discuss new background check software @jaba on Wednesday

and that was it. Then when it was time for our weekly huddle, everything would be listed in Slack and we could complete them one by one. Problem solved!

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