Schedules get overbooked, video conferencing software fails, or people don’t see a reason to attend anymore—there are a lot of reasons people may miss meetings. While some reasons are intentional and others are accidental, they all lead to a no-show. This means that the meeting host has at least one less attendee than planned, which can negatively affect the productivity expected from the call. When this happens, it’s important to confront the issue directly in a respectful and constructive way through a no-show email. Let’s dive into how to email someone who missed a meeting!
- What is a no-show email?
- When should you send a no-show email?
- Benefits of sending a no-show email
- How to send an email to someone who missed a meeting
- Free email templates for no-show emails
- Preventing missed meetings with Fellow
What is a no-show email?
Simply put, a no-show email is a message to people who were invited to your meeting but didn’t attend it and didn’t communicate their inability to attend in advance. This email reminds the participants about the value that they were intended to bring to the meeting and the purpose of the meeting. In explaining this, you can also offer an opportunity to reschedule the meeting based on its importance.
You might choose to send the email to only one participant who didn’t show or to all of the attendees who didn’t show; this decision depends entirely on the value people were supposed to provide to the call.
Meetings worth showing up to
Increase meeting engagement and productivity with a collaborative agenda that the whole team can contribute to. Try using a tool like Fellow!
When should you send a no-show email?
No-show emails should be sent to participants within the few hours following the end of the meeting. It’s not a good idea to send the email while the meeting is ongoing as the person might come late. However, sending the email more than one business day after the no-show signals to the invitee that their lack of attendance was lower on your priority list to reach out about.
Benefits of sending a no-show email
- Builds healthy communication in the workplace. Above all, sending a no-show email as a follow-up after someone misses a meeting is a sign of healthy communication skills within your company!
- Reinforces that everyone’s time is valuable and needs to be respected so that no one wastes their day waiting around.
- Offers a documentation trail of your follow-up efforts in case you’re having issues with someone who is repeatedly missing meetings or if the meeting was mandatory.
- Reminds of the importance of the meeting’s purpose. This way, the topic is not forgotten. Instead, sending a no-show email offers an opportunity for remediation through the rescheduling of a new meeting or another means of collaboration.
How to send an email to someone who missed a meeting
- Be polite
- Include the purpose and value of the meeting
- Attach relevant documents
- Provide rescheduling information
- Send the email in a timely manner
The intent of the no-show email is not to humiliate the invitee or make them feel bad for not joining the call. There are many reasons someone may not have joined, including higher priorities, scheduling issues, technology failure, burnout, sickness, or personal leave—all of which can be appropriate reasons to miss a meeting.
To be courteous (and unless you absolutely need to), don’t ask participants why they weren’t able to attend the meeting. Instead, maintain a friendly communication style that lets them know you were eager for the call and hope that everything is still going well with them.
Include the purpose and value of the meeting
A meeting’s purpose is what communicates the value of the meeting to invitees. Tools like Fellow help ensure every meeting has a clear purpose. With Fellow’s Meeting Guidelines feature set, when a meeting is being created, meeting organizers are prompted to add a meeting purpose to the description of the meeting, which helps boost meeting engagement. Then, when you send a follow-up email for a no-show, you can remind the invitee of that purpose so they know how the call was going to add value to them and you.
Attach relevant documents
When you first set up the event invite, you likely created and shared a meeting agenda—and if you didn’t, you should make sure you have one going forward! This helps the invitee see what topics were covered in the meeting or, if the meeting was cancelled due to the no-show, what topics were supposed to be covered. If the meeting did proceed without the missing attendees, it’s a good idea to share the recording or meeting summary. Fellow’s AI meeting assistant can quickly generate these for you following every call, so it’s easy to share a quick overview with anyone who wasn’t able to attend.
Provide rescheduling information
If your meeting still has a valuable purpose, you can make it a priority to reschedule the call. Tools like Calendly and Chili Piper are great for offering your calendar availability to external participants who can then find and book a new time that is convenient for them. Fellow works great for internal teams who have already integrated their calendars into the tool. As a best practice, try not to book a new time without asking the attendees about their upcoming availability so you avoid another no-show or rescheduling issue.
Suggest alternate communication channels
Sometimes you won’t be able to reschedule the call. For example, projects with tight turnaround times need fast communication, so if the next mutually available time is too far away, you’ll need to consider other communication channels. Some examples include:
- Asynchronous meetings (which are especially great for differing time zones)
- Email or Slack messages
- Face-to-face chats (which work well if you’re in the office)
Send the email in a timely manner
One of the most important parts of sending a no-show email to someone who missed a meeting is ensuring that it gets to them fairly soon after the scheduled meeting time ends. The best practice is to send it within a few hours after the call. This allows you to have enough time to reschedule the call if you’re in a time restraint as well.
Free email templates for no-show emails
- Follow-up email template
- Follow-up email template with attachments
- FoIlow-up email with a value proposition
Follow-up email template
Hi [Name of Invitee],
I noticed you weren’t able to join the call for [topic] at [time] earlier today. Because of [meeting purpose], I think it’s still important that we find some time to get together in the next [period of time].
Based on your calendar availability, it looks like [new date and time] is free for both of us. Can you confirm this will work for you? I will send a new calendar invite.
Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you,
Follow-up email template with attachments
Hey [Name of Invitee],
I noticed you weren’t able to join the call for [topic] at [time] earlier today. Because of [meeting purpose], I think it’s important that you’re in the loop about the conversation we had with the rest of the group.
Please find the full meeting transcription and a shortened summary attached. If you have any follow-up questions, please let me know.
FoIlow-up email with a value proposition
Hey [Name of Invitee],
I hope your day is going well so far. I wanted to touch base about the meeting we had scheduled for earlier today at [time].
I think our product aligns really well with the goals [Invitee Company] is trying to achieve this quarter. We have a new feature to [purpose of feature], and I’d love to show you how it works on a call together.
Do you have some availability for a Zoom call next week where I can run through a quick product demo and answer any questions you might have?
Looking forward to hearing back,
Preventing missed meetings with Fellow
Fellow is a meeting management software that allows users to create and share meeting agendas in advance, which motivates participants to prepare for and attend meetings. Ahead of each call scheduled within Fellow, invitees will receive automated pre-meeting reminders at a cadence set by the meeting host. These reminders show up right in the guests’ integrated calendars and email platforms, so they’re unavoidable! If you need to update the meeting invite, you can also do that right from one platform so guests get notified as soon as possible.
To track attendance rates, Fellow provides analytics reports where you can see meeting invites, accepted events, actual attendance, and more. This can help managers and team leaders identify trends and take proactive measures to address attendance issues.
Post-call, if there’s anyone with whom you need to follow up, you can share meeting transcriptions and summaries that are automatically collected by Fellow’s AI features throughout the call! This keeps everyone in the loop, even if they weren’t able to attend the live session.
Meeting attendance is a really important part of ensuring that collaboration time is used productively and purposefully. If meeting attendance is becoming an issue, it can be helpful to document your meeting follow-up efforts. Sending an email to someone who missed a meeting can remind them of the scheduled plans, reinforce the value of the meeting, and help get a plan in place for going forward.