Structured meetings will give a team clear guidelines and direction to tackle crucial issues and focus on solutions and innovations to lead a project and company. The meeting planner must create a platform where attendees have the time to raise their opinion.

Companies can have a tough time considering how you structure a steering meeting. The company must determine critical players within the team with the knowledge and skills to provide accurate information based on a specific problem or project.

The company can use these meetings for single projects, a group of projects, or steering an entire company. These meetings have the potential to change and direct a complete discussion. The team will know to create accurate and influential decisions that will lead the project to a major success.

Every meeting format will benefit from a comprehensive guide and structure. The guide and structure will provide the team and the planner with guidelines on what is necessary for the meeting and what part of the agenda can be skipped due to the topics of the project.

What is a Steering Committee?

A steering committee is an advisory board that provides advice, guidelines, goals, and objectives for a company, project, or team. The board will have provides an overview to the rest of the team and steers the entire project to success.

A steering committee will use investigator meetings to identify critical problems, issues, and areas within a project that must be fixed and improved. The team will have a set time to communicate and share their thoughts to create a solution that will benefit the project or the company.

How Often Should the Committee Meet?

An advisory board must meet at the start of every big project. The team can meet throughout the project to ensure that the team is on track to finish the entire project and that all problems are solved.

A steering committee for a company can meet once a month or twice a term(Twice every four months) to asses and communicate. The time will be used to channel and guide the project team in the desired direction through a couple of meetings.

Should You Have A Steering Committee?

The answer to this question is straightforward. Projects should have a steering committee to guide and solve recurring employee problems. The team will be able to create well-oiled processes and solutions that will lead the employees to build, create, and successfully finish a project of high quality within a time frame. A group of key people and technical experts will provide the project with an expert opinion and solutions that will lead the entire project to success. 

What Happens in a Steering Committee Meeting

A team of qualified and educated individuals will join a room to converse on a project. The team will be responsible for identifying clear goals and direction for a project and creating concise objectives that the employees must meet.

The team must create a budget and a set of values that the project will be run on to ensure that the company brand and identity are increased or unchanged. The team will be responsible for solving problems as they occur and creating processes for the employees that will prevent previous mistakes and issues.

The steering team can use these meetings to identify key areas of motivation for the employees. The encouragement or rewards will produce a productive and motivated project team to deliver the desired quality.

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Understanding the Role and Importance of a Steering Committee

Every individual within the team must understand their role within the team as well as the responsibilities of the entire team. Every member will bring a set group of skills and knowledge to the table; thus, understanding their responsibilities will assist them with what is expected and needed from every member at the steering meeting.

The project phase will start by identifying a strong team with set goals to set the foundation of the entire project. The implementation phase will be the company and project’s action steps to identify key roles and tasks for various levels of managers, executive leadership, and other individuals that will fill the team.

Defining the Purpose of a Steering Committee

The scope is a set project’s boundaries, goals, and deadlines. The team must identify a project scope statement that will present the clients and the employees with one statement that displays the purpose and the goals of the project as well as the timeline of completion for the entire project.

The benefits of this statement and defining the project’s purpose are that the steering team mitigates risk and can create a fixed budget for the entire project. The budget will include the actual costs and project approach the company can use to create and build the ideal. Another benefit of the project scope is to bring all stakeholders to the same expectation and understanding of the project.

Other benefits are, preventing scope creep, managing stakeholders’ expectations, and aligning project objectives for the entire project. A defined project lays the foundation for a controlled project through every process.

Key Responsibilities and Functions in Corporate Events

Key responsibilities of a steering committee when arranging and organizing a corporate event will change from a project. A corporate event will need set goals, objectives, and guidelines to ensure the team moves in the desired direction.

The team will be responsible for identifying the type of event needed to reach the desired outcome. Some companies will use conferences, meetings, and webinars to educate or introduce the company and customers to new information or products within a company.

Events such as fundraising or project introduction will provide the company employees or guests to ask relevant questions and hear about the purpose and goals behind the set event. This will bring all the stakeholders on board with the event, company, or project.

A corporate event can include an annual sales meeting that identifies and address the entire team with key points for improvement and solutions for recurring problems that the sales rep faces daily. The steering team can use online and virtual meeting platforms to ensure the entire team is present when hosting the meeting or event.

Assembling the Ideal Steering Committee Team

A strong steering committee is only as strong as the individuals within the team. The team should consist of more than one individual with expertise in one direction of a project or meeting.

A steering team will have to deal with multiple problems throughout a project. Thus having a diverse and knowledgeable team throughout every process and area of the project is ideal. The more diverse and experience the team, the higher quality solutions will be produced.

Identifying the Right Members for Your Committee

The first role to fill will be the chairperson within the committee. This individual will lead the entire meeting and provide the rest of the team with the necessary information needed to provide feedback and input to the meeting. The chairperson must be experienced in various projects and have strong leadership skills.

The other members must all be selected based on the desired tasks, skills, and knowledge. The chairperson and the company or project manager must identify the project’s fundamental needs and find members with the exact knowledge and skills needed for the role. This can be a sales, marketing, financial, or multiple other positions within the industry. Current tasks must be communicated, and a regular update to the stakeholder’s management is important. 

The team should have stakeholders within the meeting. These individuals have the project or company’s success in mind. They might need to gain the skills and education to make knowledgeable choices but will always bring an outsider’s opinion. These individuals want success for the meeting and project.

The last group of members should be managers and individuals working with the project’s ground team. These professionals will give the team insight and information on the project’s problems and progression. These members will be of great value to the entire team.

Balancing Expertise and Diverse Perspectives

A strong, diverse team will be able to produce a wide variety of solutions, goals, and guidance for the team and the multiple projects. Many shy away from a diverse group due to the possibility of conflict and disagreements within the team.

Companies should use their expertise to create a high-quality project that will lead to success. The diverse team can bring their knowledge to enhance the reach and accuracy of the project throughout the entire creation.

The advisory board will have the upper hand over the industry and can create and build a project that forces the industry to change its view or direction. For example, a robust pharmaceutical advisory board can diversify the team to a member of sales, marketing, events, finances, and approvals to ensure the team and the project can reach the set goals.

Establishing a Clear and Effective Steering Committee Structure

After identifying a solid and diverse team, each individual must receive a clear set of responsibilities. The structure will allow the entire team to deliver and add value to each meeting and prevent a group of members from fulfilling the same task or responsibility.

Defining Roles and Responsibilities Within the Committee

Before defining the roles, the committee must identify the type of committee and the desired results the team wants to achieve. After clearly stating this, the team will have a goal to achieve, and the roles will be easily identifiable.

A vice chairperson, treasury, and secretary are the leading roles that will be completed first. These individuals will be responsible for hosting, running, and creating multiple aspects of the meeting. Setting up an agenda to ensure that the team uses the project timeline effectively and controls the environment to ensure results are reached are key responsibilities of the leading roles.

Other responsibilities and roles include managing the results and creating a set document to ensure that every team member has the knowledge of the project plans they must take. Or communicating to the managers and employees about the meeting results to ensure the problems are solved as soon as possible. Some members must complete a set of research to increase the solutions and effectiveness of the entire team.

Implementing a Decision-Making Framework for Success

A steering committee will only benefit a project or a team if decisions or action plans are created from these meetings. The team must identify a straightforward decision-making process to prevent the team from communicating in circles. A circle argument states the problems and opinions of every individual but lacks a definite and direct decision at the end.

The team can use multiple frameworks to ensure that they conclude every topic, meeting, and agenda point. The chairperson must be firm and address any circular arguments to ensure that every argument has a solution and a decision. Another method is to identify action steps for every item on the itinerary. This will force the team to find actionable solutions for the items.

Steering Committee Meetings: Best Practices for Efficiency and Results

An efficient committee team is a board that meets once or twice a month and deals with every topic on the itinerary. The team is on time and can make decisions as quickly and effectively as possible.

Scheduling and Preparing for Effective Meetings

There are only a few methods of obtaining an effective meeting. The planner and the chairperson must identify key topics and matters that will be dealt with through the forum. This must be placed on an agenda and sent to the entire team. Doing this beforehand will allow the team to prepare for the upcoming meeting.

A pre-meeting agenda will allow the members to find their opinions and box them so the others will understand. The focus should be to provide every member with adequate time to develop an opinion, solution, and action plan for the multiple items on the agenda.

steercos schedule
Schedule a steering meeting

Ensuring Clear Communication and Accountability

A team meeting will only be effective if there are rules and regulations that the entire team follows. A simple rule such as raising a hand before any member speaks will prevent the team from shouting and miscommunication.

Accountability in an effective steering meeting comes from being on time and taking the actions given to every meeting member. Every member must stand by their promises. This accountability will leave the entire team at ease, knowing that every member will do as required by them.

Monitoring Progress and Adapting the Steering Committee’s Approach

A meeting’s effectiveness can only be identified if monitoring processes are in place. The monitoring will provide the company with clear information on whether the meetings are effective and fulfilling the assigned tasks.

Establishing Metrics and KPIs for Success

The team can use multiple metric systems to identify its success. The aim should be to identify the goal and determine an effective metric system. The direction and the impact of the meeting will be evaluated through the KPIs that are in place.

Deciding on a solution for a problem and then evaluating the solution as it becomes an action plan will be one form of measuring the effectiveness of the meeting. The team must deliver on their promises and should evaluate every execution that they decide on.

Conducting Periodic Reviews and Adjustments

The chairman can have one-on-one meetings with every member to evaluate if the meetings align with what they feel is successful. After the meetings, the team can adjust their methods and ways to increase their effectiveness.

This method can be used to review every decision that the team makes. There can be a set survey sent to the roleplayers in which they can share their review of the solutions and the project. After that, the team can evaluate the feedback and use it to strengthen the methods and process of the steering committee, becoming stronger and building a reputation for running successful projects.


Who Leads The Steering Committee?

The leader of the steering committee is a chairperson. This individual can be the company director or a stakeholder of the company. The individual will have the responsibility of running and communicating throughout the meeting. The chairperson must have the ability and skills of senior leadership and must use the ultimate authority to run the committee. 

Is The Project Manager A Member Of The Steering Committee?

A project manager is an excellent addition to the steering meeting committee. The project manager experiences the work and the problems the team faces daily and can provide direct information to the team. The mid-level managers can provide additional information on previous ineffective meetings and solutions. There should be a project manager within a steering committee.

The information can be communicated to the committee by email. These email updates will allow the team to be up-to-date and informed throughout the periods when the team does not meet. 

What Topics Ought To Be Covered By A Steering Committee?

The committee should set common goals and objectives for the entire project. Other topics such as budget setting, creating a timeline, and evaluating continuous progress are of utmost importance. The team will have to solve major issues and problems as they arise and communicate clearly to employees and managers to ensure that they follow the desired action steps created by the company.

What Is The Steering Committee’s Formation Process?

The company should find a chairperson and a vice chairperson as the first part of the formation. These two individuals will play the most prominent role. The leading two roles are responsible for formulating a strong, experienced team around them that will be in charge of the decisions and solutions a project or company needs.

Final Thoughts

A steering meeting can have a significant impact on a company or a project if it is used in an effective method. The committee will oversee decisions, tasks, and other solutions. The team and the project can use this format to boost sales and effectiveness. The critical aspect, however, is to pick a strong team with the knowledge and ability to create and solve the recurring problems that the project might face.

Sabine Ghali

Kelly Murphy


Certified Meeting planner with 20+ years of event management experience, founder of ConferenceSource, expert in meeting facility sourcing & contracting in North America, Europe, South America and Asia. Kelly will manage your budget as if they were her own, negotiating the best possible rate and hotel contract to benefit and protect every client and exceed all expectations for all planning aspects for sales meetings, educational meetings, product launches, incentive trips down to a small board of directors meeting. We make meetings easy understanding your meeting objectives and delivering meeting matched components.