Town Hall Meetings Get Real
As new tools, analytics and technology transform the traditional workplace, “town-hall-style” gatherings remain popular forums for employees at all levels to engage with one another and have direct contact with senior management. Beyond the camaraderie, the issues at hand and the need for consensus gathering, transparency, feedback and input make town halls an attractive option. As such, the agenda setting, post-meeting action items and feedback loops can hold as much weight as the meeting. But corporate town hall meetings often fall flat; employees see them as lip service rather than places for their voices to genuinely be heard, and senior management perceives them as precarious attempts at transparency with a low yield on organizational alignment. This disconnect shows a failure to source feedback from employees prior to meetings so that management can plan to address the right topics. Despite efforts to gather the whole team, it is challenging to prioritize agenda items, figure out what’s really top of mind across the board, and discern how best to address issues with a constructive, results-based approach.