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How to run a tandem meeting

A tandem meeting is run by setting a clear agenda, ensuring both parties are actively participating and communicating effectively, and working collaboratively towards achieving common objectives.

A tandem meeting is a collaborative session between two individuals or teams who work together to achieve a common goal or resolve a specific issue. It involves bringing two parties together to exchange ideas, share knowledge, and work in sync to address challenges, make decisions, or enhance cooperation. Tandem meetings typically promote open communication, foster synergy, and encourage mutual understanding and collaboration between the participants.

What is the purpose of a tandem meeting?

The purpose of running a tandem meeting as a leader is to foster collaboration and open communication among team members. By pairing individuals up, it allows for more focused and productive discussions, promotes sharing of ideas and knowledge, and enhances collective problem-solving abilities. Tandem meetings help build stronger relationships within the team and facilitate efficient decision-making processes.

How to run a tandem meeting: Step-By-Step


Step 1: Planning

When scheduling a meeting, ensure that everyone is available by selecting a date and time that suits everyone. To make the meeting productive, share an agenda or outline highlighting the specific topics to be discussed.

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Step 2: Invitation

When arranging a meeting, it is important to send out invitations to all participants, providing them with essential details such as the date, time, location (virtual or otherwise), and an outline or agenda for the meeting.

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Step 3: Preparation

One way to enhance meeting effectiveness is by providing participants with sufficient information and ample time to comprehend and familiarize themselves with the topics to be discussed before the meeting takes place.

ZipDo, our creation, makes team meeting preparations effortless by providing a centralized location for all information from previous meetings. Meeting leads can easily access this data, including agendas and notes, ensuring a well-prepared and comprehensive meeting agenda.

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Step 4: Arrival

Starting the meeting on time is essential for creating a productive and efficient environment. As attendees join, a brief introduction can be given to ensure everyone is on the same page and ready to contribute to the discussion at hand.

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Step 5: Icebreaker

To set a comfortable tone and encourage open communication, a casual topic or a quick fun activity is often employed as a warm-up for participants. This creates a relaxed atmosphere, fostering an environment conducive to open discussions.

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Step 6: Main Discussion

During the discussion, each agenda item is thoroughly analyzed, and it is crucial to provide every participant with a fair chance to voice their opinions and perspectives.

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Step 7: Brainstorming and Collaboration

During this step, participants collaborate, exchange ideas, provide constructive feedback, and engage in active brainstorming sessions. This collaborative environment fosters creativity and facilitates the generation of innovative ideas and viable solutions.

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Step 8: Problem Solving

Discuss and address raised issues during the meeting. Delegate responsibility for follow-up on any unresolved matters or schedule a subsequent meeting if necessary.

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Step 9: Summary

In the meeting, decisions were made, solutions were agreed upon, and tasks were assigned. A summary of the discussion includes the key points, outcomes, and responsibilities that were established.

With ZipDo, our creation, you can streamline your meeting minutes process. The app organizes meetings from your calendar into channels, where team members can be invited for access. Posting the minutes in the workspace allows for automatic distribution, ensuring the entire team is always informed.

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Step 10: Follow-Up Actions

Establish next steps, assign action items to team members, and set clear deadlines and expectations. This will ensure effective implementation and accountability within the team.

Questions to ask as the leader of the meeting

1. What are the key objectives of this project? – To ensure a clear understanding of the project’s goals and align team members’ efforts towards achieving them.

2. What are the potential obstacles or challenges we may encounter? – To proactively identify and address potential roadblocks, mitigate risks, and develop strategies to overcome them.

3. How can we improve collaboration and communication within the team? – To foster a more efficient and productive work environment by identifying any communication gaps or issues that may hinder teamwork.

4. Are there any additional resources or support needed to accomplish our goals? – To identify any resource gaps and address them to ensure the team has the necessary tools, budget, or personnel to complete the project successfully.

5. How can we make the project more innovative or impactful? – To encourage creative thinking and explore opportunities for innovation that can enhance the project’s outcomes or create a competitive advantage.

6. What milestones or deadlines should we set to track progress effectively? – To establish a timeline with clear milestones, ensuring that progress can be measured and adjustments made if necessary.

7. How can we ensure that individual team members feel valued and motivated? – To promote a positive work culture and boost team morale by recognizing individual contributions and addressing any concerns that may affect motivation.

8. What lessons can we learn from past projects to improve future outcomes? – To encourage a culture of continuous improvement, to analyze and learn from past experiences, and to implement best practices in future projects.

9. What feedback or suggestions do team members have to improve the project? – To actively involve team members in the decision-making process, promoting a sense of ownership and allowing for diverse perspectives and ideas.

10. How will we measure the success of this project? – To establish concrete success criteria or performance indicators that will allow the team to evaluate the project’s outcomes objectively.

To prepare a successful tandem-meeting agenda as a leader, start by clearly defining the objectives and outcomes. Identify the specific issues to be discussed and prioritize them based on importance. Allocate appropriate time for each agenda item and ensure sufficient breaks. Share the agenda in advance with all participants to allow for preparation and ask for input to include any additional topics.

How To Prepare For A Tandem Meeting
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During a tandem meeting, it is essential to discuss topics that promote effective collaboration and productivity. These may include project updates, task allocations, problem-solving, brainstorming, goal setting, and sharing best practices. Open communication and feedback sessions should also be incorporated to ensure everyone’s voices are heard and ideas are considered.

See Our Tandem Meeting Template
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Software tools to facilitate a tandem meeting

Software allows leaders to efficiently run tandem meetings by providing a platform for seamless collaboration. With features like screen sharing, file sharing, and real-time messaging, leaders can easily share information, make decisions, and delegate tasks. The software’s ability to streamline communication and keep everyone on the same page ensures that tandem meetings are productive, organized, and effective.

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Jannik Lindner

I'm Jannik and I write on MeetingFever about the experiences from my career as a founder and team lead.

If you have any questions, please contact me via LinkedIn.

Popular Questions

What is a tandem meeting?

A tandem meeting, in a business context, is a meeting between two individuals or two groups with shared interests or goals. The purpose of such meetings is to facilitate deeper understanding, communication, and collaboration between the participants.

Is it necessary for both parties to speak the same language in a tandem meeting?

In an ideal situation, both parties should speak a common language to facilitate smooth communication. However, in settings such as language learning, tandem meetings are often done between two people who are native speakers of different languages, aimed at mutual language practice and learning.

How is the communication process typically in a tandem meeting?

Communication in a tandem meeting is typically two way. It encourages equal participation from both parties, alternating between different topics or languages if it’s a language exchange tandem, to ensure both parties benefit from the interaction.

What is the main goal of a tandem meeting?

The primary goal of a tandem meeting is mutual learning or problem solving. For example, in a business context, two departments may use a tandem meeting to understand each other’s processes or challenges to foster better collaboration. In a language learning context, each participant in the meeting practices and improves their language skills.

Can a tandem meeting occur virtually?

Yes, a tandem meeting can take place virtually, especially given the rise of remote working and online learning. The most important aspect is the mutual exchange of knowledge or skills, which can occur effectively, even in a virtual setting.

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