Thinking About a Startup’s Internal Meeting Rhythm

One of the more common questions I get is around managing my schedule and coordinating different responsibilities. My response is that I work hard to build a consistent internal meeting rhythm and look to ensure that I’m not required for the business to operate (e.g. I’m not a bottleneck for any regular tasks). Per the internal meeting rhythm, it helps keep everyone aligned and communicating on a regular basis.

Here’s our startup’s internal meeting rhythm:

  • Daily Check-in – A 10 minute scrum every morning with the entire company at 10:20am where we answer the following questions: what did you accomplish yesterday, what are you going to do today, and do you have any roadblocks.
  • Weekly Sprint Review / Planning – Two week product sprints where every week we either review the status of the current sprint or wrap up the last sprint and plan the new one.
  • Monthly Metrics Dashboard Review – Each month we review our Google Spreadsheet metrics dashboard, which has all the critical metrics for a Software-as-a-Service startup.
  • Quarterly One Page Strategic Plan – A simplified one page strategic plan that we update and review with the team once every quarter.
  • Quarterly Celebration – Each quarter we get out of the office and celebrate as a team (e.g. a baseball game, picnic, sailing, etc).

Eventually we’ll break out the daily check-ins into smaller groups, do monthly strategic meetings, and quarterly check-ins (lightweight reviews) once the startup matures. While there are a fair number of meetings, they are all specialized and add significant value.

What else? What are some other meetings you like for your internal startup rhythm?

3 thoughts on “Thinking About a Startup’s Internal Meeting Rhythm

  1. David, you just set my new goal. “I will no longer be the bottleneck for any regular task at my company” Thanks!

  2. For every individual, what determines the lives we have lived, are living and will live . . whether business, personal, family or any aspect of our lives . . . is two decisions we make either intentionally or habitually:

    (1) How we spend our time

    (2) Who we spend our time with

    . . . in fact, you reading this right now is the result of those two decisions leading up to this very moment.

    Consider this both carefully and frequently as you implement David’s excellent suggestions above.

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