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Leading Effective Board Meetings

Before meeting:

arrow Why have a meeting?
arrow (decision-making, problem-solving, planning, evaluation)
arrow What are desired outcomes?
arrow Who is responsible for each item?
arrow Confirm environment and equipment
arrow Room arrangement
arrow To give information > Auditorium style
arrow To get participation > Circle
arrow Combination > Horseshoe
arrow Prepare agenda
arrow Considerations
arrow All items relate to mandate?
arrow Are items for action?
arrow Agenda clear?
arrow Location agenda?
arrow Specifics
arrow Start and end time for meeting
arrow Start and end time for each item?
arrow Require business items (motions) be submitted in advance
arrow Assign tasks
arrow Distribute meeting packet
arrow Distribute agenda in advance
arrow Ensure everyone on agenda knows role

During meeting:

arrow Call to order on time
arrow Stay focused using agenda
arrow Focus on substance, not form
arrow End meeting/each item on time
arrow Use unanimous consent, when possible
arrow Use consent agenda, if possible
arrow Encourage participation/equalize participation
arrow Propmt comments, if necessary
arrow Control interruptions and digressions
arrow "Park" digressions
arrow "Deflate windbags"
arrow Clarify and rephrase
arrow Manage conflict
arrow Ensure decisions/assignments clear
arrow More formal procedure if larger group (12+)
arrow More formal procedure depending on controversy/importance
arrow Close the meeting on time
arrow Close the meeting positively

Problem areas:

arrow Rambling member (“park digressions”)
arrow Dominating member (“deflate windbags”)
arrow Argumentative member
arrow Discouraging member
arrow Argument between two members
arrow Side conversations
arrow Non-participating member

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Articles are intended to provide general information and are not legal advice or a legal opinion. Specific questions should be directed to an attorney at Black, Slaughter & Black, PA., or to another lawyer.