5 Do’s and Don’ts
Town halls have become even more important for hybrid and remote workforces, and attendance at many companies has been up. They can help communicate the culture and keep employees in the loop on leadership’s vision and how their individual roles can support that vision. Make employees glad they invested their time by considering these tips:
Do: Make it a conversation
Ideally, a town hall is a chance for employees to interact with leadership, rather than having leadership spew information at them. Be sure to encourage employee participation, maybe by having them text questions ahead of time, or posting their questions in the chat function during the meeting. And encourage leadership to stop talking long enough to occasionally give employees the floor.
Don’t: Cram too much on slides
A podcast can be a great platform for having employees share their perspectives, and for including employees scattered across global locations. Try asking the same question to a handful of employees — from how they describe the culture to how they see themselves supporting the vision — and edit into a podcast episode that includes a range of individual responses.
Don’t: Have only C-level presenters
It’s just as easy to record someone working from home as it is in the office. It also makes no difference if employees are in India or Indianapolis, as long as you schedule appropriately for employees’ local time zones. Podcasts give you the opportunity to let employees hear from each other and build connections with colleagues around the globe.
Don’t: Be too HQ-centric
Sure, you’re streaming the town hall so that employees around the world can see what’s going on. But when your presenters are all from the corporate headquarters office, it may not feel like a global view. If you’re discussing an expansion in India, let the managing director in Pune do the talking. If you’re a manufacturing company, maybe host the town hall in a plant and feature those essential workers.
Do: End the meeting on time
If you’ve planned the meeting for an hour, don’t let it stretch an hour plus fifteen. Be sure to show respect for employees’ time and their other calendar commitments by managing the time allotted for each speaker and keeping things moving along according to the agenda. Tone is set at the top, so make sure leadership is setting an example of good meeting etiquette and efficiency.