An interesting question that seems to pop up among many entrepreneurs I talk to is “How do you manage and run such a large team?”
At the moment, Lead Cookie consists of roughly 26 team members and we are running over 70 live accounts.
That is a lot of people and customers to stay on top of.
While managing everything is a much bigger question that combines many pieces, there is one tactical piece that I can share. That is how we run our weekly meetings.
What I will share with you in this post is not some original concept I dreamed up on my own, but instead, some ideas that I have borrowed and mashed together from others.
How I built our meeting agenda
The biggest source of inspiration for the meeting flow I will share in this post is the EOS Traction Book by Gino Wickman. If you are not already using EOS, or have read the book, then I highly recommend it IF you have a team of at least 3+ people in your organization. Prior to that, the book is not quite relevant.
I also pulled pieces of this from Chet Holme’s book called The Ultimate Sales Machine. This is where the concept for “Workshop” came from.
And other pieces I just added in through what felt natural and made for a good culture.
This is not some perfect formula, but hopefully, it can provide inspiration or direction to you for your weekly agendas.
How we organize our agenda
It is a simple Google Doc that we open and walk through each week with links attached for any other necessary resources.
Our weekly meeting agenda
Rocks / Quarterly Target Update
Product Development Update
Invoicing / Accounting Review
Time Off Review
Work / Life Balance Scores
Total Call Time = 90 minutes
Here is what that looks like in practice...
Weekend Updates - 5-15 Minutes
This can seriously take up a large portion of our call, but it is one of the most enjoyable pieces. We walk through the whole team (Yes, all 26 team members) and everyone gives a quick 2-3 sentence weekend update. Sometimes someone may go a bit longer or we may have a fun conversation based around a person’s update.
There is nothing tactical about this but it lets us bond as a team and make jokes and laugh together. It also gives us all a bit of insight into each other’s personalities. This can take up to 15 minutes of the meeting but that is ok as the rest flows very quickly.
Metrics Overview - 1-3 minutes
Next, we pull up our metrics dashboard and walk through the KPI’s for the company. I share more about our dashboard in another article.
This gives everyone some insight into the company's health, and team members consistently mention how they love the transparency that we bring by sharing our dashboard with the entire team.
Rocks / Quarterly Targets Update. 2-3 minutes
Next we walk through our quarterly targets and the owner of each target shares an update on any progress or lack thereof. This creates accountability and keeps these quarterly targets top of mind.
Product Development Update - 0-2 minutes
At times we are experimenting with new products. At other times we are just running stable, but we take this time to discuss any new product line updates or ideas. Most often we just skip over this if things are stable, but if a new idea has popped up that we want to test, or a new initiative is underway, we discuss that here.
Operations Update - 0-1 minute
This is another section we often skip over. This is simply a place to update the team on any personnel changes. If we hire someone new or move someone to a different position, then we use this time and space to update here.
Customer Review - 10-15 minutes
This is the other largest portion of our meeting time. We take 10-15 minutes to walk through our entire chart of customer accounts. The manager over the individual account will share a 1-2 sentence update on each account unless there is something of concern.
This helps team members sync on anything that they need to communicate with each other about accounts. Strategists can talk to account managers and quickly sync.
This also serves as our weekly “Customer Health Check”. At this point, our team will raise any red flags saying “This account is not doing well,” or “I’m concerned with the responses we are getting here,” or “Our client has 5 leads that have been sitting for a week they haven’t responded to.”
These health checks help our team proactively dive in and fix problems instead of just responding to client complaints. This is crucial to what sets us apart from so many other companies.
While most agencies only react to client complaints, we actively survey customer health and then take actions to fix or improve if we see any concerns.
Invoicing & Accounting Review - 1-3 minutes
At this point, our operations director pulls up our invoicing system and discusses any accounts that are up for renewal in the next 2 weeks. This is a chance for him to sync with team members on billing. Issues we may discuss here are:
This client has not officially canceled but mentioned they only wanted to run 3 months. Can strategy please check in with them?
This client had a 6-month prepay and they are now due for billing again. Can sales or strategy please sync with the client to confirm how they want to bill going forward?
Is this client churning or staying?
Simple things like these can be synced on verbally in just a few minutes and eliminate countless Slack messages back and forth.
Time Off Review - 2-3 minutes
Next, we go through time off requests. We keep a log on our standup agenda of any team members who are taking time off and hold any discussions here to facilitate and make sure that the person is properly covered.
Workshop - 30 minutes
This is the fun part of our weekly calls. For a long period of time, we held two 60-minute calls. One was our standup, and the other was our workshop. Eventually, we combined those into one 90-minute call and found it to be much more time-effective.
I have written extensively on workshops before, although I will explain the process here briefly.
Workshops are simply a time and a place for the team to discuss problems together.
We keep a running Trello board of workshop ideas for improvement, or problems to discuss.
This helps us isolate all of these conversations to a weekly time instead of trying to fix fires throughout the week.
Whenever someone comes to me with a burning problem or idea, I simply say “Bring it to workshop”. This prevents us from having massive distractions in our day since we have a weekly space to discuss these items.
Weekly Jokes - 3-4 minutes
One of our company values is to have fun and stay positive. To keep in line with this, we take turns having a few people share either a joke or a 60-second funny video each week. This is a super fun and laid back way to end each meeting. We keep all of the jokes PG to PG-13 rated and we have a general tendency toward puns…
Marble Racing - 3 minutes
Somewhere along the line, my ops guy had the idea of having the whole team watch Marble Races together… It’s basically like horse racing for marbles. We get a hoot out of this and eventually even created our own Marble Race series… Our team loves this and it is a weekly highlight.
Work / Life Balance Scores - 3 minutes
To wrap up each meeting, we give work-life balance scores on a rating of 1-10. Since “Life > Work” is one of our core values, we always want to make sure people have a reasonable workload and that we are not ever driving someone to poor quality of life by overworking them.
We take these seriously and if someone gets a 7 or below on a consistent basis, we seriously look at how to fix or improve that person’s role or workload.
Our weekly call is often a highlight of the week
In a world where most people dread meetings, we love ours at Lead Cookie. It is seriously something we all look forward to each week. Since we all work remote, it acts as both a social occasion and a chance for us to align on key business items.
On many occasions, I’ve laughed so hard during our standups that tears have come from my eyes. It’s just a great time and something I look forward to every week.
Meetings don’t have to suck.
They can be fun.
This is how we run them. It’s not a perfect formula, but it’s perfect for us. Hopefully, this provides some inspiration in how you run your weekly meetings.