Productive Meetings

The level 10 meeting agenda: pros, cons and guidance

4 min read

If you’re familiar with EOS® (the Entrepreneurial Operating System®), then you’re probably utilizing the level 10 meeting agenda. It comes highly recommended by many leadership and business experts and follows a strict agenda to make sure meetings are focused and actionable.

What is a level 10 meeting?

Level 10 meetings® are a core element in the Entrepreneurial Operating System, a set of tools and principles that help guide entrepreneurs in running their business. EOS focuses on the six key components of every business: vision, people, data, issues, process and traction®.

Whether or not you’re using EOS as a business tool, there’s tremendous value in having the bulk of your meetings revolve around solving problems and prioritizing issues.

The level 10 meeting agenda

The agenda for level 10 meetings is specifically structured to solve issues and challenges. Meetings are held for 90 minutes every Monday morning with senior leadership teams.

Here’s the agenda they follow:

Check in (5 minutes)

Start the meeting with a personal check-in. Share a win, or an “aha!” moment to kick the meeting off on a positive.

Scorecard (5 minutes)

Discuss three to five metrics that pass the “beach test.” The beach test is the idea that if you’re on a beach vacation and these metrics are off track (think your app is down, cashflow, etc.) you’d fly home to fix it.

Rock updates (5 minutes)

”Rocks” are projects that will take up a quarter’s worth of work. Go through company and department “rocks” and whether they are on track or off track. If they’re off, create an issue to discuss during that portion of the agenda.

Client/employee headlines (5 minutes)

Share both employee and client feedback that others on the team can learn from or celebrate.

To-do list (5 minutes)

Run through the to do list (this carries over from meeting to meeting) and check off what’s done, not done and in progress. Again, be careful not to dwell here – if there’s an issue, add it to the discussion for later.

Issues list: identify, discuss, solve (IDS®) (60 minutes)

Up until this point in the meeting, everything is pretext. The crux of your meeting focuses on understanding the root of problems and constructively solving them, rather than jumping to solutions. With all of the issues handy in a list (often times tracked in a Google Sheet), meeting attendees should vote on the top three priorities and focus on tackling them in the meeting. If issues are on the agenda for more than a few weeks, then they should be dropped to a long-term list to be discussed on a quarterly basis.

Wrap up (5 minutes)

Recap the to-do list and next steps from your meeting.

Pros of level 10 meetings

⏱ They’re time copped: Level 10 meetings are strictly time-copped to make sure the focus is on resolving issues. With strict time-boxes, you’re forced to make your points short, succinct and clear to get to the meat of the discussion.

📊 They keep you focused on goals: Everything in the level 10 meeting revolves around your business goals and addressing the most important challenges and obstacles that are or have the potential to keep you from hitting your goals. This laser focus is hugely important (and often a stumbling block) for leadership meetings.

🛑 They focus mostly on issues: The bulk of time in EOS level 10 meetings is discussing issues. Everything else in the agenda is about sharing information and uncovering challenges and issues to dig into further in the discussion. The next 60 minutes of the meeting is specifically dedicated to issue resolution.

🛠 They give structure to your other meetings: A huge benefit of EOS is laddering up of other departmental meetings into the level 10 meeting. Weekly 30 minute meetings between teams ladder up into the level 10 meetings, which ladder up into quarterly meetings, which ladder up into annual offsites.

Cons of level 10 meetings

🤝 They require very strict facilitation: Often times, companies will have an EOS implementer® come in and facilitate their level 10 meetings, which can be costly. But the framework won’t succeed unless you adhere to the rigid format of the meetings.

📚 They involve lots of legwork before the meeting: With the level 10 meeting agenda, there’s a lot of pre-work that goes into your meeting in terms of filling out the scorecard, your headlines, grooming your issues list, etc. This might be challenging for some teams.

📑 They require manual processes: Like the prep work, a lot of this documentation is done in drives, sheets, and shared folders – which can get a bit messy. If you prefer to use tech to facilitate the admin in your meetings, then you might struggle with some of the manual implementation with this meeting structure.

Whether or not you adopt the full EOS, these level 10 meetings can help your leadership team solve issues and challenges quickly and efficiently – and SoapBox’s shared online agendas will make it easy to bring this agenda to the team.