How to Maximize the Value of a Board Meeting

A board meeting provides the opportunity to discuss crucial corporate issues with a variety of experts. They provide a variety of perspectives that are important when deciding on big-scale strategies, or defining how teams are going to follow these strategies.

The effectiveness of a gathering is dependent on the manner the leader keeps discussions on topic and directs them. Meetings are not effective if they are not on topic and go over time, regardless of how energizing the agenda is. It is also difficult for participants to prepare and take part if important documents have not been prepared prior to the meeting.

To maximize the value of board meetings, begin with a 10 minute recap at the beginning of every meeting. The recap reiterates key points from previous pre-meeting calls and the board’s agenda. This will help clear the board members from their minds and keep them focused.

Sidetracked by new topics of discussion can eat up precious time during meetings, and distract board members away from the more urgent agenda items. Include a parking area item on the agenda to allow for discussions on topics which may require further investigation but aren’t an immediate priority.

After the agenda has been decided it’s crucial to hear reports from the executive director, as well as any committee or standing reports. It is also possible to have someone listen to the financial reports if you’re required to discuss them further. After discussion is over the chair should open the floor for a discussion on each item. If a motion is proposed to be considered, it should be “seconded” by another member before being brought up to vote.

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