The morning huddle. The daily scrum. The stand-up.
Whatever you call it, this first meeting of the day is a powerful tool utilized by teams all over the world.
Morning meetings can be held every day or just 1-2 times per week. Regardless, they provide the opportunity to bring a team together to align around common goals and purpose. And to facilitate the best interactions during these huddles, the team leader needs to be prepared with some solid morning meeting questions.
First, what are the benefits of having a brief morning meeting?
When you gather your team for an intentional and focused discussion at the beginning of the day, it can help with:
- Clarifying top priorities
- Sorting out competing requests
- Surfacing concerns
- Preventing misunderstandings
- Resolving problems
- Pivoting in response to change
- Creating personal connection and trust
- Showing support
- Celebrating small and big wins
- Reinforcing cultural values
Why do you need to be prepared with morning meeting questions?
We’ve all been in poorly-run meetings before. Ugh! They’re painful. An inefficient or unorganized meeting can do more harm than good. If you’re the leader of that type of meeting, your credibility and influence will take a hit.
And if bad meetings become commonplace, team culture can be negatively impacted. Employees who have to attend will become frustrated, start to disengage, and stop speaking up with essential feedback and input. Meetings then become 1-way, where the leader’s doing all the talking as opposed to engaging in 2-way conversations that add value.
Regardless of whether you’re a seasoned or new leader, you may benefit from having a broader palette of morning meeting questions to use when guiding these gatherings.
"If you aren't meeting regularly with your team, you don't have a team. What you really have is a collection of boxes on an org chart." - Barbara Burke
Try these morning meeting questions in your next team huddle:
Questions that create personal connection – Don’t discount the positive impact of building personal connection with your team, especially at the beginning of a meeting. As long as it’s done genuinely, it’ll build rapport and encourage a casual and open vibe for the rest of the discussion.
- How are you feeling today?
- How is your family doing?
- How was your weekend/trip?
- What’s the latest with your (kids or pets)?
Questions that check-in on projects – It’s important for leaders to get status updates from their employees, but sometimes this can easily turn into micromanaging or giving orders. Instead, try these open-ended questions.
- How are you feeling about ______ ?
- What’s the latest on ______?
- How’s it going with _____?
- What’s your next step with _____?
Questions that surface challenges — These questions can help address problems (big or small) before they boil over into a crisis.
- What, if anything, is stressing you out right now?
- What, if anything, are you nervous about?
- What would make your work easier?
- What’s keeping you up at night?
Questions that offer support – It’s crucial that your team feels you have their back and are willing to jump in to provide help or guidance.
- What support do you need?
- What can I help clarify?
- What might you delegate?
- What other resources do you wish you had?
Questions that help motivate – It can be powerful to help your team connect with the “why” behind a project or task.
- What’s exciting you about this right now?
- How do you think this project will help the company/team?
- Let’s get crystal clear – why do you think we’re taking on this project?
- What feels meaningful to you about this work?
Questions that inspire optimism – Promoting a positive mindset can go a long way in enabling your team to move through challenges and change.
- What’s something you’re grateful for?
- What are you looking forward to about this?
- What small wins have we experienced today or this week?
- What strengths do we have that’ll help us get through this challenge?
Questions that align priorities – It’s easy for people to feel bogged down with tasks and unsure of where to dedicate their time. Helping your staff with time management can help them feel supported and like they’re headed in the right direction.
- What’s on your priority list right now?
- What priorities feel like they’re competing right now?
- What are your top 3 priorities for today?
- What’s our most important goal right now?