Scaling Alignment with an Operational Meeting Rhythm

Why do we need an operational meeting rhythm?

At Y42, we strive to reduce the number of meetings that we have in order for everyone to be able to use their time effectively.

However, in a world of collaboration certain meetings are not avoidable. The meetings that are necessary should be catalysts for information sharing, accountability and creativity. However, instead of creating many different ad-hoc meetings in places where an asynchronous alignment is not possible, we decided to put a structure in place that solves for:

  • Deduplication: Discussing topics only once (and documenting decisions)

  • Specificity: Clarifying which people are needed for any decision

  • Documentation: All Agenda Items are protocolled and attendance is not mandatory.

The meeting structure is built like a pyramid, from many “on the ground meetings” to the leadership meeting at the top.

  • Information flows from “on the ground” to the decision making circles in an aggregated form

  • Clarifications flow from top to bottom after all important information has been processed

  • In practice, we use ClickUp tickets to async communicate information between different meetings.

Staggered schedule Using a staggered calendar (see illustration) optimizes for the pyramid-like information structure of the meetings so that topics that are raised do not have to wait longer than a week.

Different meeting formats

Leadership Meeting

Meeting where the leadership team meets to discuss company wide topics and priorities.

  • Strategic Guidance

  • Company-Wide Issues

  • Resource allocation

Company Goal Meeting (Extended Leadership Meeting)

Meeting where the operators of the company meet to discuss how to achieve key goals and objectives within the company.

  • Accountability & goal achievement (OKR & KPIs)

  • Discover major blockers & opportunities

  • Alignment between different departments

  • Feedback & guidance for Leadership Meeting

Project & Team Management

  • Achieve Project/Team Goals

  • Discover major blockers & opportunities

  • Tactical Discussions


  • Accountability on Goals & Actions

  • Coaching on topics & decisions

  • Transparency & feedback

Bonus: ClickUp as system of record for meetings

Reasons for using ClickUp:

  • Better accountability across the organization

    • Easier global prioritization

    • Much better accountability on agreed Action Items

    • Everything is traceable

  • Finally transparency

    • You don't have to attend meetings as “FYI” but can easily see action items & decisions

    • Roll up all action items/decisions across team, department, company

    • More buy-in from every person due to visibility into everyones effort

  • Enables highly structured communication

    • Structured meetings with clear boundaries, agendas

    • Interchangeable data format (same data structure across different meetings)

    • Clear flow on how to escalate decisions (from 1-1 to leadership)

    • Deduplication of information (using ClickUp references)

Downsides to be aware of:

  • It’s a heavy structure with some onboarding required

  • People may not “work this way”

  • It requires a device to be part of the meeting