Annual Business Meeting Tips and Agenda
As we approach a new year, we begin to flip the page and start fresh with both mindset and business strategy. As cliche as it may sound, a new year brings about new opportunities and can reinvigorate your business’s passion and zest. Just as a business cycles through the seasons from Q1 to Q4, or how our daily lives transition from morning to night every day, so too does a calendar year. Starting off Q1 with the right foot forward can set your business up for success.
Just like a restful night of sleep builds a strong foundation for a good day, working as a team to brainstorm and deliberate next year’s goals can now set you up for a strong year ahead—queue in the annual business meeting.
What Is an Annual Business Meeting?
An annual business meeting is held to review and reflect on the closing year, re-align the business with its values and mission, and set strategic goals for the year ahead. Typically, an annual business meeting involves the upper management, the executive team, and any stakeholders within the business. However, depending on the structure and processes of the organization, this may vary.
Communication is king when it comes to a well-functioning, productive, and healthy business. A McKinsey and Company study found that well-connected, communicative teams are 20-25% more productive than their less connective and communicative counterparts. Ultimately, an annual business meeting enables your team to establish unity through communication and start the new year smoothly. By doing so, you’re setting your business up for both internal and external wellness and success.
Key Talking Points For Your Annual Business Meeting Agenda
You don’t want to let your annual business meeting turn into another this could have been an email type of thing. So, your leadership team must come prepared with a clear vision and a thoughtful agenda. As we mentioned above, the purpose of an annual business meeting is to reflect, reset, and establish business goals and strategies for the future. Here are some key talking points that we recommend adapting to your business and incorporating into your annual meeting:
How The Business Performed This Past Year
For your team to be on the same page as you head into the new year, you all have to have a general understanding of past performance. For leadership teams, this requires vulnerability and transparency. For your teams to feel heard, valued, and respected, they expect their leaders to be open and communicative regarding business results.
Begin by reviewing the goals you had hoped to achieve by the end of this year. Break down these goals by their KPIs or key performance indicators. How did you measure your success? How did the business stack up to these expectations? Break down the specifics of what went well and why, as well as what didn’t go so well and how you can change this in the future.
Also, be sure to celebrate little wins. Not only does this boost overall morale, building a stronger company culture, but it helps to reinforce the positive parts of your team’s efforts and encourages the continuation of these actions going forward.
Reviewing Mission, Value, and Purpose Statements
Like the north star, a business’s mission, value, and purpose statements serve as a guiding light. They are the roadmaps that keep a business in check and help all team members make thoughtful decisions. These values drive decisions on both micro and macro levels, so it’s always a good idea to check in and recenter your team along every so often.
Because a business is a fluid, ever-changing entity, its mission, value, and purpose statements are too. Another great benefit of reviewing these annually is changing them if they no longer serve the business. If this is the case, it is even more important to make sure you’re establishing these statements with every player within your organization since it inherently impacts everybody.
This mid-point is a great opportunity for a team-building activity. Depending on the size of your meeting, break up into smaller groups for a more intimate conversation. Here at The Centre, we offer event spaces both big and small and can provide a space specific for breakout sessions. Once every group has been established, ask each group to discuss how your business’s mission, value, and purpose influence their day-to-day jobs and tasks. This activity brings people who may not work together every day to connect and see the bigger picture that they’re all working towards accomplishing. At the end of the breakout, you can ask each group to share something they talked about that relates to your business’s overarching purpose.
Set Future Goals
Once you’ve properly reflected on your past year’s business strategy and have established and communicated your business mission, value, and purpose with your entire team, it’s time to look into the future and set goals.
These goals should be measurable so that you can track your journey throughout the year. So, with each goal, come up with a KPI that would best benefit your business. Some examples of measurable KPIs include the number of total sales, website clicks, emails sent, etc. Where do you want to be in the next year? What about five years from now? What direction are you trying to steer towards? Write these down and use them to drive your business strategy.
How Long Should Annual Business Meetings Be?
As with any business meeting, it’s important to be mindful of everyone’s time and make sure that you’re using your meeting time productively and efficiently. You don’t want to make your employees feel like they’re wasting their valuable time, and you don’t want to be wasting your valuable money on a meeting that should have been an email.
However, there isn’t one standard amount of time for all annual business meetings. You know your organization best, and you know what you need to go over with your team and shareholders. Annual business meetings shouldn’t feel rushed, and since you are covering an entire years’ worth of data and hard work, it demands thoughtful planning and a devoted timeframe.
Here is a business meeting agenda sample:
- Welcome and go over the agenda
- Review past performance
- Communicate mission, value, and purpose statements
- Breakout team-building exercise or small break intermission
- Set future goals
- Open up to questions
Because there is so much to review and discuss, it’s important to make attendees feel comfortable and well taken care of. Here at The Centre, we cater to Escondido businesses and all organizations within San Diego County and beyond who are looking for time well spent. Our state-of-the-art corporate event spaces can be set up to fit your needs and include amenities like drop-down screens with Apple TV, AV capabilities, a virtual golf simulator for breakout sessions, and the opportunity to grab coffee or lunch at Culture Craft Coffee & Espresso and Vintana Wine + Dine.
Perhaps you’re looking to knock two birds with one stone by incorporating a hybrid or holiday event? We recommend beginning your meeting at our Delta Ridge board room and then moving to our Lexus Lounge to celebrate with a holiday party.
Whatever the occasion, no matter the size of your event, we’re here to help you make it the best it can be. Contact us to start planning your corporate event, annual business meeting, or holiday party today.