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Meeting Glossary: 26 Common Meeting Terms to Know

Here are 26 key terms every professional should know for successful engagement in the ever-evolving business landscape.

Have you ever felt a bit lost in the workplace? Maybe a colleague has asked you to set up a meeting, but they’ve used a term with which you’re unfamiliar. Or maybe you were tasked with facilitating a hybrid meeting and you weren’t aware that you were supposed to curate a guest list for both in-person and remote employees. No matter what the scenario may be, it’s important to understand common meeting terms. Keep reading to unlock common meeting terms you should know! 

Glossary of meeting terms

1Action item

Action items are specific tasks or actions that need to be completed to achieve a goal. A comprehensive action item will typically include a description of the task, a deadline, an assignee, the priority level, and the status of the task or action. 

2Agenda

An agenda is a document that outlines topics that are to be discussed during a meeting or event. Typically serving as a framework or conversation guide for meeting or event participants, agendas help keep conversations on track while ensuring important items aren’t missed or forgotten. An agenda typically includes the date, time and location of the meeting, a welcome note, a section for both new and old business or updates, reports, announcements, and closing remarks. 

Meetings worth showing up to

A well-run meeting can foster communication and collaboration by including an agenda the whole team can contribute to. Try using a tool like Fellow!

3All hands meeting

An all-hands meeting is a company-wide meeting that requires everyone’s attendance or participation. Often used as an opportunity to share company-wide updates or achievements, all-hands meetings are essential for promoting a sense of community, fostering transparency, and creating alignment across the entire organization. 

4Asynchronous communication

Asynchronous communication refers to communication that doesn’t take place in real time. This means that participants don’t have to be present or contribute simultaneously to communicate. With asynchronous communication, messages can be sent or received at different times and can be responded to at a later time. This communication method is particularly useful for dispersed teams or organizations that prioritize deep work, focus, and inclusivity. 

5Brainstorm

Brainstorming is used by an individual or a group to cultivate innovative ideas. Often conducted in a group setting, brainstorming aims to find as many creative solutions as possible to a problem in a small amount of time. Brainstorming is most beneficial when diverse participants come together in an inclusive environment to share perspectives and work collaboratively. 

6Collaborative note

A collaborative or shared note is a document that can be accessed by numerous contributors. Often used in collaborative environments to foster teamwork and information sharing, collaborative notes act as a hub to share and edit information. Collaborative or shared notes can take many forms, including shared documents, shared notebooks, and shared whiteboards. 

7Cross-functional meetings

Cross-functional meetings are gatherings that bring together stakeholders from varying departments to promote effective communication and collaboration. Often used to discuss project updates, cross-functional meetings allow organizations to foster cohesion and ensure everyone is on the same page. 

8Delegate

To delegate means to assign. For meetings, delegating means entrusting a colleague with a task. This may mean entrusting them with the responsibility of hosting a meeting or assigning action items after the meeting ended. Delegating tasks or responsibilities can foster teamwork, boost efficiency, and allow for a more efficient use of resources. 

9Digital notes

Digital notes refer to notes or snippets of information that are recorded in a digital format. Instead of using a traditional pen and paper, digital notes are taken digitally with devices like smartphones, laptops, or desktop computers. Digital notes are used to increase accessibility, improve organization, and enhance collaboration. 

10Facilitator

A facilitator is a contributor who takes on the role of organizing or guiding a group of people. With respect to a meeting, the facilitator will be responsible for organizing the meeting. The responsibilities of the meeting facilitator may include creating a meeting agenda, inviting guests, assigning meeting roles, and following up on action items. 

11Hybrid meeting

A hybrid meeting refers to a type of meeting that involves in-person and remote employees. Hybrid meeting participants can choose whether they wish to participate in person or remotely, empowering both remote and in-person employees to connect and collaborate in a shared space through video conferencing software or alternative online collaboration tools. 

12Icebreaker

A meeting icebreaker is an exercise or activity that is often conducted at the beginning of a meeting to help create an inclusive environment where attendees can familiarize themselves with one another while breaking down barriers, encouraging interactions, and building rapport. Meeting icebreakers are particularly useful in an environment where meeting participants may not be familiar with one another. 

13In-person meeting

An in-person meeting refers to a meeting or gathering in which participants share a physical location; this means that meeting participants aren’t logging in virtually and are instead meeting face-to-face in a shared space. In-person meetings may take place in an office, boardroom, venue, or any designated work space. 

14Kick-off meetings

Kick-off meetings are gatherings that take place at the beginning of a project. Often used to align team members before embarking on a new journey, kick-off meetings pose an excellent opportunity to educate stakeholders on the project at hand, dive into project objectives, analyze potential risks and roadblocks, and create a clear path forward. 

15Meeting cadence

Meeting cadence refers to the schedule and frequency at which a meeting occurs. The meeting cadence will determine how often meetings are conducted and how long each meeting lasts. It’s important to note that your meeting cadence will change depending on your needs and the type of meeting you’re hosting or facilitating. 

16Meeting cost

Meeting cost refers to the monetary value associated with hosting a meeting. For example, if X number of employees attend X number of meetings per week, it will cost your organization X amount of dollars per year. Failing to accurately calculate your meeting cost may lead to tens of thousands of wasted dollars. 

As a purpose-built tool for meetings, Fellow supports every type of meeting from one-on-ones to project kickoff meetings and stand-ups so you can boost productivity and cut costs! Calculate the cost of your meetings with our meeting calculator and learn how you can save $16K/year For 5 people making $65K annually to meet 2x per week for 1 hour.

17Meeting minutes

Meeting minutes are notes taken during a meeting that serve as an official or formal document of key points that were covered during the meeting. This form of documentation notes key discussion points, important decisions, and actions that were taken during the meeting. Taken by an official notetaker or secretary, meeting notes must be distributed to all key stakeholders after the meeting has finished. 

18Meeting feedback

Similar to regular feedback, meeting feedback refers to the process of collecting input, evaluations, or opinions to make iterations and improvements. Meeting feedback can take many forms and often serves to improve meeting performance or effectiveness. 

19Offsite meeting

An offsite meeting refers to a meeting or gathering that takes place outside of the regular workplace. There are several scenarios in which one would facilitate an offsite meeting, including brainstorming opportunities, team building and collaboration purposes, hosting in a neutral or distraction-free environment, access to additional resources, networking opportunities, and more. 

20OKRs 

OKR is an acronym for objective and key result that refers to the methodology people managers and team members leverage to define expectations and create measurable goals. The OKR-setting framework is often used to paint a clear path forward, eliminating uncertainty and providing you with a framework that can be used to move the needle closer to the intended outcome.

21One-on-one meeting

A one-on-one meeting is a meeting that occurs between two individuals, often taking place between a manager and their direct report. One-on-one meetings are primarily used to check in, answer questions, break down barriers, and provide encouragement.

22Parking lot

A meeting parking lot is an efficiency hack that is used to keep meetings on track. When a topic arises that doesn’t pertain to the meeting agenda, a parking lot can be used to park the snippet of information. The parking lot will then be revisited at an appropriate time to avoid distractions during the present meeting. A parking lot can take many forms, including a notepad, a sticky note, a presentation slide, or meeting minutes. 

23Remote meeting

Contrary to an in-person meeting, remote meetings take place virtually meaning participants are not sharing a physical location or meeting face-to-face. Instead, participants are attending the meeting virtually from a home office, coffee shop, or any designated remote workspace. 

24Screen sharing

Screen sharing is a feature within video conferencing software that allows the user to share their screen. This means the user can share their screen with one or multiple participants during online meetings, networking events, presentations, or collaborative sessions. 

25SMART goals

SMART goals are a framework used for setting effective goals and can be leveraged in a variety of departments including engineering, marketing, customer success, human resources, and design. Each component of the SMART framework works together to ensure those using the framework are set up for future success. 

SMART goal setting

26Stand-up meeting

A stand-up meeting or daily stand-up is an interaction that occurs between teams, usually at the beginning or end of the workday. During a stand-up meeting, each participant will have the opportunity to provide an update while expressing their concerns or providing support to their peers. This interaction is held to answer questions, foster alignment, and check in on progress. 

Take your meetings to the next level with Fellow  

Fellow is an all-encompassing meeting management platform that strives to help users drive engagement and productivity by building better meeting habits before, during, and after every meeting. With Fellow you can keep track of work interactions and feedback over time, collaborate on meeting agendas before every one-on-one meeting, assign clear action items and takeaways at the end of each meeting, and centralize action items from different meetings in one personal to-do list. Coined as your one-stop shop for meeting agendas, action items, and feedback, Fellow helps users build better meeting habits and run more effective meetings with collaborative meeting agendas, real-time notetaking, and time-saving templates.


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About the author

Hannah Ross

Hannah is an experienced content creator and digital strategist with a demonstrated history of working with startups, small business owners, and large organizations. Presently, Hannah serves as the Founder at Flamingo Social where she strives to create impactful organic content marketing strategies that help founders tell inspiring stories.

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