##Creating an Agenda Agendas are important documents that inform people on why they are gathering and what they will do when they gather. They are like a script for a facilitator, giving direction as to how much time to spend on an activity as well as stating what questions to ask and when to ask them. Agendas provide the “bird’s eye view” perspective of the meeting. Having an agenda ready to pass out to participants before the meeting allows everyone to start on the same page.
When designing a community meeting you will want to plan a clear agenda for people to follow. One tool to help design your meeting is P.O.P, which stands for Purpose, Outcomes and Process, a resource designed by the Rockwood Leadership Institute. Here is how you can use this tool to begin planning your community meeting.
Purpose: Sit down with your teammates and have a discussion as to what the purpose of your meeting is? Are you trying to recruit people to work on your project, are you going to inform people about an action or project happening, or are you trying to gather information from people? The first step is identifying a specific reason as to why you need to gather people.
Outcomes: Now that you know what your meeting is about, think through what you want to achieve at your meeting. Do you want to connect people who may not have been connected prior to the meeting or do you want to gather ideas on how to implement a plan? List a set of at least three outcomes you want to see that are connected to the purpose. These outcomes will help keep facilitation on track and go on to inform your process
Process: There are many processes you can use to make your meeting interactive and engaging. To understand what process may work best in your situation, think through what each outcome is and how you plan to achieve that outcome. If one of your outcomes is to gather input on plan X, then you will want to choose a process that allows people to openly share ideas. If your outcome is to inform people on new laws that might affect them, then you will want to choose a process that enables you to share information to a diverse group of people. The size of your group will affect the process you choose. Generally the larger the group, the more you will want to use “small group” processes while in a smaller group facilitated discussion will work just fine. Whichever you choose, your process should reflect both the purpose and outcomes of your meeting.