Meetings, Members & Governance

Once your Network is up and running, with enough people to form a Leadership Team, it’s time to host your first meeting. This meeting should be about getting to know each other, agreeing roles and responsibilities for the new network going forward and creating an initial action plan for the coming year.

Five Tips for Effective Network Meetings

  1. Meetings should be regular and follow a clear agenda.
  2. Prioritise a few key action items to work on before the next meeting.
  3. Assign owners and timelines for each action item.
  4. Summarise next steps. Agree next meeting logistics.
  5. The person who has recorded actions should send a meeting recap to attendees with agreed action items.

Network Roles

The leadership team may vary depending on the size, needs and goals of the group so feel free to tailor these descriptions.  

Oversees the running of the network. They plan and chair meetings, coordinate with stakeholders including the sponsor, support members, provide updates and build relationships with other Networks. Given the amount of work that is involved with the Chair position some networks have chosen to appoint Co-Chairs. 

Communications Lead
Promotes awareness of the network, the events it runs and ways to get involved. 

Membership Lead
Recruits new members and maintains membership records.

Events Co-Ordinator
Plans logistics for and leads the organisation of events.

Keeps records and helps to schedule and structure meetings.

Manages the group’s budget and maintains financial records.


How to Find Members

Members are the lifeblood of any network.  The more members you have, the more vibrant your network. 

Tips for Finding New Members

  1. Invite your colleagues to your events so that they can see what it is all about for themselves.   
  2. Host an informal Coffee chat
  3. Share your own experiences with others. Explain why you enjoy being part of a Network. Personal stories are powerful as people connect well with stories.
  4. Highlight that all colleagues are welcome, including allies (people who are not from the community the group is about)
  5. Share the purpose and goals of your Network and benefits of joining with colleagues.
  6. Get a slot at a Team Meeting or Town Hall where you can talk about your Network and invite colleagues to join
  7. Encourage members to bring a colleague who is not an existing member of the Network.


Keeping Members Engaged

If you want your Network to make an impact, then you will need to have a plan for how you keep your members engaged.

These might include:

  • Hosting informal networking or social events
  • Feature members in internal communications highlighting any achievements or notable contributions.
  • Create mentoring opportunities specifically for members.

Track your membership growth, event participation and any survey results to assess the effectiveness of your network.