Meetings are the social glue that keeps organizations working together. In meetings, we share information, discuss projects and decide the future of our careers and the companies we work for.
But before we have any great meetings, we must send a great meeting request email.
How to request a meeting via email
Don’t believe us? In this article, we’ll break down the steps to write better email meeting requests. We’ll learn from the pros about what to include, unlocking the secrets of successful emails. You’ll never find yourself sitting in an empty room or staring at an empty Teams screen again.
With some help from Flowrite, everyone will want to attend after they get your email – so you better ensure the meeting is worth it!
Basic rules of meeting request emails
1. Invite as few people as possible
The world is experiencing meeting madness,’ says the academics writing in the Harvard Business Review. The average executive spends 23 hours weekly in meetings, leaving little time to do what they’re paid to do.
The more people there are in a meeting, the less efficient they are.
- Problem: Too many people are invited to meetings they don’t need to attend
- Solution: Don’t invite them
Start with those people who have to be there and invite them and nobody else.
Meetings with more people also tend to be less efficient. The more people there are to speak, the longer and harder it becomes to hold the conversation.
How many people is ideal, then? Well, as with most things, it depends. But generally, keeping online meetings to 2-5 people is good practice. You can always keep others in the loop by recording the meeting and sharing clips using tools like tl;dv or taking notes and sharing them afterward.
2. Check calendars to see potential times
Is your calendar a solid block of booked-out time with no breaks at all? That’s because meetings have increased an incredible 70% since the covid pandemic.
When proposing a meeting, it’s a great idea to check that the people who matter are available. (Before checking calendars, see the tip above.)
If you don’t have access to calendars, you can set up an online poll to find a suitable time. If it’s critical that a meeting occurs on a specific date or at a particular time, then go with that.
When asked to attend by your boss, MD, CEO, or senior manager, people will often make the time or face the consequence.
3. Be clear about why the meeting is needed
It sounds like common sense, but state upfront what the meeting is about, what you’re trying to achieve, and why the person (or persons) are invited.
Think of it like a play with five acts:
- You’ve got a problem that affects all of you in some way
- At the meeting, you’ll discuss the problem and agree on a solution
- The people in the meeting will be responsible for delivering the solution
- Problem is solved
- Everyone lives happily ever after (until the next crisis)
If your meeting request contains parts 1-4, you’ll achieve 5.
4. Send a meeting agenda in advance
Before your meeting, send out an agenda to everyone. As well as breaking down the process of the meeting, an agenda acts as a timely reminder.
If you’ve been to as many meetings as we have, you’ll know that timekeeping is often an issue, so set out the rules of engagement in the agenda. Here are some tips:
- Introductions can take ages, so if everyone knows each other, don’t bother
- Set out what you want to achieve at the start
- Put the important stuff at the start, as agendas are always pushed
- Tell people if they don’t need to be at the meeting to leave (and don’t hold a grudge if they do)
- ALWAYS ask people to test their connections before dialing in and ensure they have downloaded the software they need
- Provide instructions on how to share screens
- Let others know in advance if you will be discussing private or confidential matters to prevent participants from dialing in from a train or busy cafe
5. Provide a call to action (CTA)
In the online world, CTAs encourage someone to do something – and the principles work for meeting invites too. If you need people to read and prepare, tell them to do so. It’s always easier if attendees have done their homework.
There’s a real science to writing CTAs (as Hubspot explores here), so we won’t go into it in detail, but check our examples below for some inspiration.
6. State the time and place clearly
It sounds obvious, doesn’t it? But you should state the time, place, and software you use. If you’re working across time zones, countries, and continents, be sure that everyone understands this.
Blended meetings (where some people are there in-person and others dial-in) are notoriously challenging, so give people clear options and instructions. There’s nothing worse than wasting a quarter of your meeting for someone to download Zoom and dial in. There are also no excuses if you’ve planned things properly.
Meeting request email format
1. Meeting request email subject
Subject lines are the first thing your recipients will see, so make them memorable. Need some inspiration? Here are some email subject line examples for meeting requests:
- Meeting request (insert dates)
- Can you help us?
- We’re meeting on (insert dates)
- Can you attend a meeting on (insert dates)
- Urgent meeting request
2. How to start an email asking for a meeting
Remember the story narrative we set out above? Now’s the time to put it into practice.
You start your meeting request by explaining who you are and why you’re messaging them. Then set out that reason you’re messaging. Sure, you want to arrange a meeting, but spell out why – whether this is to check on progress, solve a problem, or agree to a solution – and why it’s critical to hold a meeting.
You’ll see examples of how to do this below, but here’s a great cookie-cutter example:
3. How to write the body of the meeting request email
The body of your email is the filling in your sandwich, so make it satisfying. Remembering the narrative we set out above, provide a breakdown of what the meeting is, why you’re calling it and what you hope to achieve by the end.
People won’t read through mountains of text, so say it succinctly as possible. Don’t be afraid to break up information into blocks; use bold type to highlight important parts and use bullet points.
We can’t tell you what to include in your meeting requests, but we can show you how to write them – and at the end, you’ll find 24 examples.
4. How to end an email requesting a meeting
Remember rules 5 and 6 from above: provide a CTA and give the time and place. Tell them if you want people to do certain things (read a document, watch a video, or prepare a presentation).
If you’re calling the meeting, you’re also calling the shots, so be confident in asking for what you want.
Request for meeting email samples and templates
Now we’re ready to see some sample emails requesting a meeting. In fact, here are 24!
These meeting email request samples are here to give you some ideas and inspiration. Of course, you’ll need to include information here to make these work. But, whether you work as a senior executive in a Silicon Valley start-up or are starting out in accounts, these samples will work for you all.
24 requests for meeting email samples
1. How to request a meeting with your boss sample email
Take charge of the situation and get a meeting in the diary with this straightforward and direct meeting request for your boss. In this example, we ask the boss to suggest some times and dates for the meeting, rather than dictate to them when they should meet us (because they’re in charge, right?).
2. One-on-one meeting request email sample
This example is similar to the requested email above, but we’ll assume you’ve got something specific you want to discuss with your boss – and want some privacy to chat.
3. Business meeting request email example
This is a more formal approach for a meeting where we spell out the objectives. Then, after that, it’s about getting things done!
4. Professional email to request a meeting sample
This sample targets a potential client or customer you’ve never met. It’s a typical prospecting email with the end result: a meeting request.
5. Follow-up email for meeting request sample
This email follows the prospecting email above and acts as a reminder. It’s short and straight to the point…
6. Meeting request email sample to manager
Your boss is (if they are anything like ours) busy, so we’ve kept this meeting request email sample to a manager short and sweet.
7. Casual meeting request email sample
You don’t need to be formal if you're friends with someone. Here’s a casual meeting request sample you can use to get a date in the diary.
8. Sample email requesting availability for a meeting
Sometimes you’ll need to get availability from someone before you go through the process of arranging a meeting. Use our sample email requesting availability for a meeting template, and you won’t go wrong!
9. Sample email to request a meeting with client
Here’s a sample email to request a meeting with a client! This is an email to a client you have a relationship with. It may be too informal for a new client, so update and amend it.
10. Introduction meeting request email sample
Introduction meetings are a great way to present a new employee, client, or contact to someone. Here’s a standard introduction meeting request email sample that’s brief and ideal for business meetings.
11. Lunch meeting request email sample
What’s better than a meeting? A lunch meeting!
In our lunch meeting sample request, we let the person you’re meeting pick the place (it’s only polite, after all).
12. Requesting a phone call meeting email sample
Sometimes after a meeting, you’ll need to arrange a phone call to discuss some details. Our email sample requesting a phone call is a great template, so get busy.
13. Request to reschedule meeting email sample
Plans can change; if they do, it’s polite to let people know. In this request to reschedule a meeting sample, we don’t provide a lengthy explanation, as there’s no need, but feel free to add more detail if you want to.
14. Sales meeting request email sample
Sales meetings are crucial for any company, creating connections and generating cash (hopefully!). This sales meeting request email sample is a way to get to the business with your prospect to close a deal.
15. Team meeting request email sample
Team meetings are an important way to get everyone together and communicate. But, they can be drawn out and dull, particularly if there’s no agenda. In this team meeting request sample, we provide a helpful template that could help you avoid these issues.
16. Urgent meeting request email sample
Urgent meetings can be tough to call as everyone seems so busy. The key is to make it clear why your meeting is a priority. Then, keep it on point with our professional urgent meeting request sample.
17. Request for virtual meeting email sample
Virtual meetings make getting together easier than ever. But there are some considerations, including software and technology. We tackle these issues in our request for a virtual meeting email sample.
18. Request for Zoom meeting email sample
Zoom meetings are a popular online platform for professional meetings. While Teams is standard as part of the Microsoft 365 package, you’ll need to download Zoom for it to work and have the meeting code and ID to get let in. Our request for a Zoom meeting email sample deals with it all.
19. Informal meeting request email sample
Business correspondence doesn’t have to be boring, as our informal meeting request sample shows. Of course, this won’t be suitable for everyday use, but if you’re friendly with the people you’re messaging, feel free to be a little less formal.
20. Formal meeting request email sample
This formal meeting request email sample is the opposite of the one above. This formal meeting request sample is ideal for sending to anyone you’ve never met before.
21. Face-to-face meeting request email sample
Sometimes only a face-to-face meeting will do. This face-to-face meeting request sample sets out the date, time, and place of your meeting. Just don’t forget to turn up!
22. Cold email meeting request sample
This cold email meeting request sample is what professionals call prospecting. Of course, you’re not sure if you’ll get a response, but you should send the request anyway because it could be the start of something big.
23. Request for a meeting appointment email sample
What’s a meeting appointment? It’s a request for a meeting time from someone important (a doctor or other professional). Use our request for a meeting appointment email to create a great impression on anyone you need to.
24. Request for meeting agenda email sample
Not been sent the agenda for your meeting? Use our request for a meeting agenda template to ensure you get the docs you need before it kicks off.
Meeting request email template
We’ve focused entirely on emails inviting others to meetings, but what happens when you’re the one being asked to attend? Here are a few ways you can respond to meeting requests for events you want to attend and those that you don’t.
1. Accept a meeting request email template
It’s always great to give good news. So here’s our email template for accepting a meeting.
2. Decline meeting request email template
You may have another engagement or simply have something better to do than attend a meeting. Whatever your reasons for turning down a meeting, telling the person is polite, and here’s how to do it.
Flowrite’a schedule a meeting email template
Let’s face it. Scheduling meetings is one of the most tedious tasks in working life.
Because all of us can’t (unfortunately) afford to employ an assistant to schedule our meetings for us, we created Flowrite’s AI-powered meeting scheduler:
We guarantee that this will help you book that meeting faster than ever.
Responding to a meeting request email with Flowrite
Another thing we hate is replying to countless Google Meet, Zoom and Teams meeting requests. Luckily Flowrite can help us with this too.
It’s often as fast as choosing the right template (Decline/Accept a meeting) and clicking “Generate response”. All in all maybe 5 seconds. That’s the magic of Flowrite!
The ability to arrange a meeting is a basic skill we all need to work and live. But that doesn't mean it’s easy.
We hope that breaking down the process into simple steps will make it easy for you to write meeting request emails.
If you get stuck, remember that meeting requests follow a simple structure. Don’t overthink it, just get the intro right, outline the meeting’s date, time, place, and purpose, and you’ll be fine.
If you get stuck, Flowrite is there for you with our handy meeting request email template.
Supercharge your communication with Flowrite
Write emails and messages faster across Google Chrome.
Share this article