Post-mortem Meeting

Ensure organizational learning by creating a forum to meet and discuss a project or incident.

Use this agenda for free

A post-mortem is the process of analyzing and documenting the outcomes of an event or incident. They can be useful whether things have gone smoothly or otherwise.

The post-mortem requires pre-work and analysis, but the post-mortem meeting is an important part of the life-cycle, helping ensure organizational learning, allowing people to get closure, and can improve morale.

Before the meeting it is important to write up a report. The report should include:

  • A description of the event
  • A timeline of important events
  • Root cause of the incident
  • Impact of the incident
  • Corrective actions taken

For more background we recommend reading how Etsy approaches post-mortems.


1. Opening round ( 5 mins )

Take a moment to help build a foundation of trust. Answer an icebreaker.

2. Initial reactions ( 5 mins )

Go around the room allowing each member to share high-level thoughts on project/incident. Minimize cross-talk and discussion.

3. Review report ( 15 mins )

Walk through the report. Allow some back and forth, but record dynamic agenda topics for any meaty topics.

4. What went well? ( 10 mins )

Discuss and make note of what went well during the incident.

5. What went poorly? ( 10 mins )

Discuss and make note of what could have gone better.

6. Any other topics?

If time allows, are there any additional topics points that warrant in-person discussion?

7. What should we do next time? ( 10 mins )

If a similar incident was to happen again, what should the team do next time?

8. Closing round ( 5 mins )

Go around the room and have each person share one takeaway or lesson learned.

Wondering what this meeting agenda will look like when you’re running your meeting? Take a look below!

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Screenshot of agenda