Huddles are short, sharp, focused, meetings. They generally involve the leadership team with the intent to improve communication and obtain support as needed.

Huddles aren’t just for sports teams. In a recent conference call, one of our clients mentioned that they hold daily “huddle” meetings with their leadership team to improve communication and keep one another informed.

This made us think back to a former leader we worked with years ago. She held huddle meetings with her department heads on Mondays and Thursdays to share planned changes/events and associated successes and failures, and to highlight any barriers or constraints that required assistance.

Huddles do not replace team meetings –   but rather are another vehicle to keep other leaders informed and to build relationships. These meetings are short; 15 – 20 minutes, with the intent that each leader provide “headline news” about their organization. If a colleague requires additional details about a topic, side meetings are to be scheduled only for those impacted. If a leader has nothing to share, they simply “pass”.

Getting started:

  • Set the frequency, rules and intent for the huddle and who should attend
  • Think of speaking in terms of “bullet points”
  • No one should speak longer than 1 minute (this is a variable you can change)
  • Encourage others to meet outside of the huddle if a deeper dive is needed – the facilitator should have no problem saying “please take it offline
  • If meeting in person, one recommendation is to stand, which helps keep the meeting short

Huddles are a great way to keep one another “in the know” and improve awareness of what is happening outside of one’s own team/organization.

It’s also an opportunity to support one another when needed resources or expertise can be shared to benefit other teams or organizations.

Do you hold huddle meetings? If held, could they add value for your organization?

The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together,
the club won’t be worth a dime.
–Babe Ruth