An Ad Hoc meeting is one that occurs outside your usual recurring meetings or meeting rhythms. They are also called one-off meetings. Ad Hoc meetings are called to deal with a specific topic or discussion versus a recurring meeting that takes place at regular intervals and has ongoing, regular topics. Ad Hoc meetings can be unstructured with no preparation or planning, or they can be structured with an agenda and meeting minutes. It depends on the purpose of the meeting.
When do you call an Ad Hoc meeting?
Most businesses have regular recurring meetings that happen weekly, monthly, or quarterly. You should have an ad hoc meeting when:
- Something comes up that can't wait until the next regular meeting. It is usually when something requires a decision or action urgently. Or,
- Situations or events that are outside the topics you usually discuss at your regular recurring meetings and/or with a different person or group of people than you usually meet with.
- The meeting is held with people outside your organization, like a sales or information-gathering meeting.
Example: You are planning a party to celebrate your company's 10th Anniversary. This is a one-time event and you have asked for volunteers from your team to help plan it.
What kind of agenda is best for an Ad Hoc meeting?
At Tadum, we know that agendas are impactful for all meetings because:
- An agenda gives you (the person calling the meeting) a chance to collect your thoughts and write down what you want to get out of the meeting.
- When you share the agenda with your meeting participant(s) before the meeting, it sets their expectations for the meeting and allows them time to prepare.
When everyone is prepared for the meeting, the meeting is much more effective!
For Ad Hoc meetings, the structure of an agenda is less important than simply having one in the first place. It depends on the purpose of the meeting and the outcome you are hoping to achieve. Some examples of what you could include:
- Information gathering meeting: List the question(s) you need to answer
- Emergency meeting: List the problem(s) you need to solve
- General meeting: List the discussion topic(s) and potential options
- Hiring meeting: List the position(s) you need to fill
Example: A general meeting agenda to plan the 10th Anniversary Party:
- Question: Should we have a formal program or keep it casual?
- Question: Which date works best in our team schedule?
- Discussion: Brainstorm locations to host the 10th Anniversary Party
- Ask for volunteers to: Call a few of the locations we brainstormed, Make the list of clients and colleagues to invite, Design the invitations, Order food platters, Make table decorations
What follow-up should an Ad Hoc meeting have?
Depending on the purpose and result of the Ad Hoc meeting, you might:
- Send a summary email with the meeting minutes, including a list of the agreed-upon action items. Tadum does this for your meetings automatically.
- Schedule a follow-up meeting to share and discuss outcomes, or to gather feedback.
- Decide to have not follow-up in any way.
Example: After the 10th Anniversary Party is over you might have a follow-up meeting to share the compliments that clients and colleagues shared during the party, and to thank your planning committee for their great work. You could also gather feedback from everyone on how they think the event went.
How does Tadum help me run Ad Hoc meetings?
Tadum is meeting minute and agenda software that helps you get organized and stay accountable. Tadum will help you run Ad Hoc meetings in the following ways:
- Speed up meeting preparation using our structured agenda sections and easy sharing.
- Encourage collaboration with real-time access to the agenda for all meeting attendees to take notes, share information, and give feedback.
- Automatically save your read-only meeting minutes, including all Todos, and automatically generate the next agenda for your follow-up meeting.
Example: This is what your Ad Hoc meeting agenda might look like in Tadum:
If this looks like something you want to try out, sign up to start a free 14 day trial! See how Tadum helps you run both your Ad Hoc meetings and your recurring meetings.