Deborah Rim MoisoSessionLab

Roles in a meeting

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15 - 304 - 30 Medium

Organize the day's meeting by co-creating and assigning roles among participants.



Enabling the group to improve its meetings and team culture, with a collaborative approach; sharing the task of facilitation with participants.




    Run this exercise at the start of a meeting, as part of logistics announcements and introductions, usually after a check-in and/or ice-breaker.

    (1) Assigning main roles 
    Introduce, and write down, a few of the roles that will help make the meeting a more successful experience:
    • facilitator
    • leader
    • time-keeper
    • note-taker

    Explain each role's main responsibilities, and invite people to step up and volunteer to take on that role for the day. Write their names next to the roles. With teams that work together longer, suggest having a person fill a role for a longer period of time, such as a month, before rotating. Rotating allows for everyone to gain more awareness about specific aspects of running meetings, and improves teamwork as people learn what works best for that role.

    Thanks volunteers, and remind them they have the group's trust and at the same time you are there to step in, support and help as needed. 

    (2) Co-creating new roles
    Ask the group if they think other roles would be useful for this specific meeting or gathering. You can add some examples, such as:
    • heart-keeper - tasked with checking in on the group's energy level and offering ideas such as energizers, guided meditations, a stretch or break and so on;
    • gate-keeper - for busy situations with people coming and going, someone who can be close to the door and help newcomers join in.

    Find appropriate names for these new roles and volunteers to fill them, and add these to the whiteboard.

    (3) Assessing the roles
    At the end of the meeting, check in with the group: how did it feel to hold the various roles? What worked well and can be a learning for the next time? Do we need other roles, or to change these?

    Online & in hybrid meetings

    In online and hybrid settings, you can run the same exercise. Possible roles participants may cover include:
    • chatterbox - responding to people in the chat to support a welcoming atmosphere;
    • tech assistant - supporting participants with tech needs;
    • remote participants buddy - bringing needs from the remote cohort to the attention of the facilitation team.

    Explore a detailed meeting agenda template to see a typical format you might deploy when running such an activity. 

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