First Meeting with New Team Agenda Template

January 31, 2022
First Meeting with New Team Agenda Template
Mary Nour
Written By
Mary Nour

The first meeting with your new team is critical. Not only does it set the tone for future meetings, but it also sets expectations for you, as a manager, and the whole team.

Check out our article for tips on how to be well prepared and the necessary items you'll need to include in your "first meeting with new team" agenda to make an outstanding first impression and kick things off with your new team on a high note.

What should be discussed in the first meeting with new team?

What do you say in the first meeting with a new team? It is recommended that your first meeting cover the following:

  • Your team members' experience: it is best if you give time for each team member to describe their background, history, and capabilities.
  • Your team members' roles: in the meeting, outline who is responsible for what and who reports to who.
  • Your expectations for the team: the meeting is an opportunity to set the objectives for the team, how often they should meet, and how you can track their progress.
  • Give the team a chance to ask questions.

Tips to run your first meeting with your new team

Here are a few recommendations on how to run your first staff meeting that will help you achieve your meeting objective, connect with your team, and lay a solid foundation for a successful and productive team experience.

Be yourself

How do you introduce yourself in the first team meeting? Be yourself. Effective leadership is about building trust. When you let your team see your true personality, this inspires mutual trust and respect and builds better communication.

If you are passionate about a certain hobby, let them know about it. If you are a funny person, joke around with them. You may be surprised how such a small thing can connect people.

Set a good example

First impressions last, and what you do in your first meeting will the tone of your leadership philosophy and style. You should aim for creating a work atmosphere where mutual respect and trust are a cornerstone.

Your direct reports will look for cues in your behavior to know what is acceptable and they will try to model that.

To establish a positive working relationship and set an example, try to arrive on time and dress appropriately. Make sure you use professional language and be courteous and polite. Try to give your team your undivided attention and actively listen to them. It’s best if you adopt open body language and a positive attitude.

Allow a two-way conversation

Being talked at during the entire meeting can be a cause of boredom. You can consider your first meeting as an informal face-to-face talk or informal virtual meeting. Have an interactive meeting by looking for ways to engage the team in the meeting content. 

This will let the employees know that you prioritize their experience and keep them present during the designated time.

Have a flexible meeting agenda

Having a meeting agenda is important. However, you need to be careful not to strictly commit to the meeting agenda, so you would not miss the chance to have meaningful interactions with your team.

Of course, you need to be prepared. But it is best if you keep things flexible, so interactions, conversations, or questions can flow naturally.

Keep your first meeting short and productive

The longer the meetings, the harder it is for people to concentrate. Try to keep the topics concise and your kick-off meeting time under an hour.

You can easily avoid having a long first meeting by scheduling one-on-one meetings. It is always a good idea to meet your new team members individually. 

Set clear expectations

When ending your first meeting, you need to make that everyone has clear expectations about what is required from them and what to do next. Setting clear expectations holds each one accountable and responsible and helps drive better results.

 

➕ Extra bonus. Try sending out a thank you email after the meeting is finished; it has a positive effect on attendees and enhances meeting productivity.

 

What to include in your first meeting with new team agenda template

How do you write an agenda for a first meeting? A well-prepared agenda guarantees effective meetings. Check out what to include in your kick-off meeting with new team agenda.

1. Break the ice

You may ask yourself how do I start my first meeting? Well, first team meeting icebreakers are the answer. Icebreakers are the best way to spark up conversations. As a manager, it will help you to get to know the team, boost energy levels across the room, and make everyone feel included and comfortable enough to share their ideas.

You can use first team meeting icebreakers to not only know your team on a personal level but also adjust your team management skills and style to drive the best results from your team. So, when they answer the icebreaker questions, make sure you actively listen and take notes.

2. Introduce yourself

The best first impression you can make as a manager is through being yourself and showing humility. It is an opportunity to build trust with your direct reports.

In your introduction, share more than your accomplishments. You can share what motivates you to get out of bed and what you are passionate about outside of work. Show them that you are in the process of learning and trying to get to know the team better and figure out what works best for everyone.

You can also share your personal team leadership philosophy: what you stand for, your communication style, and your vision for the team.

You should aim for making the team feel comfortable with you, which depends on knowing you better as early as possible. And remember to keep your introduction short to ensure that your first meeting is a shared experience.

3. Discover your team

Whether you are a new manager for a new team or an existing team, dedicate time in your meeting to discovering your team member’s work styles, what motivates them to succeed, and their feedback so you can start to make improvements.

You can ask questions that target the challenges, roadblocks, and opportunities that are currently unpursued but should be. You can also let them talk freely about the best and worst things they experienced within a team.

Creating a psychologically safe space to discuss such experiences will help keep everybody on the same page when it comes to team values, what morals you encourage, and what behavior you consider toxic. This shows that you appreciate clear and honest communication and will help set the tone going forward.

Make sure you include everyone. Notice who had not a chance to speak and try to stir the conversation towards them and ask them to share their thoughts.

4. How can I best support the team?

Most of your team members will not expect such an open-ended question. It is a great opportunity to hear what everyone has got to say.

Help the conversation get started by providing some examples of how you can support the team and give everyone an opportunity to answer the question and share their thoughts.

Indeed.com provides this great list of ways you can support the team:

  • Frequent communication
  • Making yourself available to answer questions or help solve obstacles
  • Providing guidance and proper training
  • Freedom to express thoughts and ideas
  • Helping prioritize tasks

5. Set expectations

This part of the meeting is about establishing how you want your team to work and what you want them to achieve. You explain your vision and priorities to the team while keeping it general to encourage the team to speak their mind and contribute their ideas.

You can also walk them through how you will track your progress so that they know what is expected of them.

6. How can we best communicate as a team?

Managers should help create an environment where different forms of communication can coexist. It is best if organizations empower leaders to determine their communication tools and styles, feedback methods, and team’s cadence.

Organizations can make use of these agile, easy-to-use communication tools:

  • adam.ai: one place for teams to run efficient meetings, create collaborative meeting agendas, record decisions, and assign tasks.

    Start Free Trial 14-day pro. No credit card. No hidden fees.

  • Slack: an all-purpose communication platform for the teams
  • Jira: for the software team to plan, track, and release software
  • Trello: a tool that makes it easier for teams to manage projects and tasks

Besides using the suitable communication tools, you can work on enhancing communication. When it comes to effective communication, Forbes recommends the following:

  • Ensure that people are ready to engage in the form of communication initiated (especially remote employees)
  • Conduct team briefings to provide a two-way communication channel
  • Create a communications style guide using personality tests to communicate with each team member the way they prefer
  • Know how new employees prefer to communicate at the kick-off meeting

7. When, where, and how often should you meet?

Your kick-off meeting can be a great opportunity to discuss meeting cadence with your team. You can ask your team members how frequently they think you should meet and when can that be, the mornings or afternoons? Should you meet once weekly or twice?

8. Time for questions

Leaving time for questions will ensure that the meeting ends with everyone on the same page. It is also a great opportunity to set clear expectations.

9. Conclusion and next steps

Make a strong conclusion because that is what your direct reports are going to take with them. They need to know what is expected from them and what comes next.

At the end of your meeting, you can express how excited you are to join the team and confirm the cadence of team meetings, as per your discussions during the meeting.

You can also let the team know that you’ll be scheduling one-on-one meetings for each of them, which shows how sincere you are in trying to find ways to support them.

If any items that need to be addressed arose during the meeting, make sure to let the team when you will get back to them regarding those items.

You can also let them know if you are planning on providing training on new systems and processes or have a brainstorming meeting for planning upcoming projects.

First meeting with new team agenda template

Check out our "first meeting with new team" agenda template. You can use it to guide you through your first meeting to build a positive workplace relationship.

I. Let’s know each other better

Icebreakers are the best way to spark up conversations.

Here are some icebreaker questions to inspire you:

• What is the best piece of advice you have received?
• How would you spend your days if you don’t have to work?
• What was the worst job you ever had?
• Do you prefer funny or dramatic series/stories?
• What would it take to give up your smartphone for a month?
• Where is your favorite vacation spot?
• Who is the most famous person you have met?
• What is your favorite musical instrument?
• What do you do in your free time?
• If you could share a meal with a famous person, who would that be and why?
• Tell us something no one here knows about you
• If you had a time machine, what time would you go back to?
• If you could be great at any sport, which would it be?
• What is your favorite TV show?
• What is your favorite cuisine?

Teambuilding.com offers a great list of fun questions for virtual meetings. We have chosen some virtual icebreaker questions for you:

• Do you love working from home or would you rather be in the office? Do you like a hybrid work model?
• What’s the hardest thing about working virtually for you?
• What are the benefits of working at home for you?
• Do you have a dedicated workspace at home? Show us your office space!
• Be honest; how often do you work from bed?
• What does is your morning routine when working from home?

You can also use a random question generator. You can find plenty online. They are a fun way to help you ask questions.

II. Allow me to introduce myself

The best first impression you can make as a manager is through being yourself and showing humility.

Here are some points to consider:
• Keep it short
• Show the real you
• Discuss your personal and professional background
• Share your personal interests
• Share your personal team leadership philosophy: what you stand for, your communication style, and your vision for the team

III. Tell me about you

Discover your team. Whether you are a new manager for a new team or an existing team, dedicate time in your meeting to discover your team member’s work styles.

Consider the following questions to inspire you:

For existing teams

• What do you want to change in this team?
• What do you not want to change in this team?
• Where do you see as an opportunity for improvement within the team?
• What’s been the most frustrating obstacle you have encountered with the team lately?
• Are there any topics you have been hesitant to discuss within this team?
• What is the project are excited to work on this year?
• What activities do we need to start, stop, or continue doing as a team?

For new teams

• What’s been your favorite project to work on this year (or last)? Why?
• Which excites you the most about working in the company?
• Who are the best and worst managers you’ve worked with? What made them the best or worst?
• What did you consider as obstacles stopping your team from performing their best in your previous job?
• What activities do we need to start doing as a team?
• Have you felt micromanaged before? When and why?
• Have you felt you needed more support within a team before? When?

IV. How can I best support the team?

Most of your team members will not expect such an open-ended question. It is a great opportunity to hear what everyone has got to say.

V. Let’s set expectations

This part of the meeting is about establishing how you want your team to work and what you want them to achieve.

You can set expectations by asking questions like the following:

• What do we want this team to be known for? What are our values as a team?
• What is your best channel to receive feedback? (e.g., verbal, written, face-to-face, video call, etc.)
• How do you define success?
• How can this team create a collaborative, supportive, and creative workplace culture where everyone feels comfortable enough to share their ideas?

VI. How can we best communicate as a team?

Managers should help create an environment where different forms of communication can coexist.

Points to consider:

• Know how they prefer to communicate
• Make sure people are ready to engage in the form of communication initiated
• Make it clear that you will conduct team briefings to provide a two-way communication channel

VII. When, where, and how often should we meet?

Ask your team members how frequently they think you should meet and when can that be, the mornings or afternoons? Should you meet once weekly or twice?

VIII. Questions anyone?

Before ending the meeting, leave time for questions to ensure that everyone is on the same page.

IX. End of meeting: Our next steps

Make a strong conclusion because that is what your direct reports are going to take with them.

Points to consider:

• Express how excited you are to join the team and confirm the cadence of team meetings, as per your discussions during the meeting
• Consider letting them know that you’ll be scheduling one-on-one meetings to get to know them better
• Let them know you will get back to them regarding items that need to be addressed

 

 

Liked our "first meeting with new team" agenda? Download the editable version, so you can make a personalized, powerful agenda that suits your leadership style.

 

More meeting agenda templates

This agenda is one of many more free agenda templates, created with every team's needs in mind. Feel free to download the ones that you use the most, customize them to fit your team, and make the most out of every meeting.

  1. Team meeting agenda template
  2. Board team meeting agenda template
  3. Quarterly planning meeting agenda template
  4. Standup meeting agenda template
  5. Status meeting agenda template
  6. Sales team meeting agenda template
  7. Brainstorming meeting agenda template
  8. Skip-level meeting agenda template
  9. Kick off meeting agenda template
  10. Retrospective meeting agenda template

 

Conclusion

Preparing for your first meeting is of utmost importance. It sets the tone with your team, lays a solid foundation for a successful and productive team experience, and will have a positive effect on future meetings.

Remember to show the real you, be modest, and be open to questions because this will build mutual respect and trust between you and your direct reports.

Use agile, easy-to-use communication tools to create a two-way communication channel, especially with remote-working employees.

Model the best behavior you need to see your direct reports adopt. Make sure you are clear on what is expected from your direct reports and what comes next.

You can our first meeting with new team agenda template to guide you. It’s editable and free and includes all the items you may need. And you are off to a great start!

This is why organizations and teams of all sizes resort to a meeting agenda software, which is usually part of an all-in-one meeting management software, to facilitate the whole process and automate many parts of it.

And while there may be multiple meeting management solutions available, here are a few reasons to consider adam.ai:

adam.ai meeting management platform
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