How to Conduct an Effective Board Meeting

A board meeting that is productive will allow the organization to move forward by making informed decisions. In order to accomplish this, board members must collaborate to plan meetings. They should go through reports and documents, provide feedback, and address questions. They should also engage in thoughtful analysis and deliberation on strategic issues, including an exhaustive review of current strategies and a plan for future direction.

An effective board meeting begins with a clearly defined agenda. It should be distributed to participants prior to the meeting and include all items for discussion (e.g. the board package, the past minutes, proposed policies and committee reports). These documents will help participants to prepare for the meeting. They also reduce time during the meeting by not having to look for details.

After the board has reviewed and discussed reports and other information then it’s time to make a decision. This is where the power of the board lies. In this part of the meeting the board will talk about and make decisions on specific actions that should be taken in order to achieve the goals of the company. The chair will also conduct an open roll call to verify that a quorum exists, and to ensure that all members are involved in the discussion.

It is beneficial for the board members to include experts from the organization in the decision-making process. Inviting someone from the engineering department present an update on the latest product or having a sales manager talk about a recent major win can give fresh perspective and encourage productive discussions. It’s also a great idea to bring in external speakers to give the board more information on the relevant issues.