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We have all at one time attended board meetings or at least heard of them and consequently we admit that a number of them are often so boring that our minds wander away to other things. Most people cannot wait for the meeting to end due to the monotony of the agenda in nearly all meetings.

What exactly is an effective board meeting? Well, it’s a formal meeting where the board of directors of a particular organization convene to discuss important matters relating to the organization, with regard to how the organization is fairing in its bid to attain its specific objectives. Effective board meetings are usually chaired by a chairperson or if not, an appointee appointed by the chairperson. For this meeting to commence, it must always meet the right quorum.

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Board Meeting (source flicker)

Here are 10 tips for an effective board meeting.

1. Set Clear Expectations for Each Member

It is advised that at least two or three days before the board meeting, each member should be provided with what is expected from him or her. They should be provided with points on what they should work on and present during the board meeting. Looking at most effective board meetings, they are known for sending agendas and minutes to be discussed to their board members well in advance of the meeting. The members come prepared and ready with what to expect from the meeting. This in turn saves the organization a lot of time to spend on other value adding.

2. Have an Agenda That is Focused and Realistic

Members that attend board meetings have precious things to do with their time, but for the betterment of the organization they leave their duties to share their ideas in the board meeting. For this reason, it is important that the chair starts the meeting on time and present topics which are not only focused but also realistic. For each particular topic, the chair should identify the necessary action to be undertaken or ask from the board members what their view is regarding the matter at hand. This way the organization finds better ways to deal with major problems, thanks to the concept of effective board meeting. MeetingKing includes a standard board meeting agenda template that will help you structure an effective board meeting.

3. Check Progress from Previous Meetings

The main purpose of meetings is to define action items. However action items are only valuable if they are also executed. Start your board meeting with an update on action items agreed upon in previous meetings. Participants will feel good about the progress that was made and it will make sure things will not be forgotten. If tasks from previous meetings are not done, reassess and decide whether the task is unimportant and can be deleted or make sure it gets done.

4. Have The Members Work in Teams

According to Joanne Fritz, for any effective boarding meeting, the chair needs to let members work in teams to better solve the problems the organization is facing. The team members get to connect and share different skills which enable the organization solve problems more efficiently.

5. Meet Monthly or Within a Consistent Timeframe

Businesses that tend to perform well always hold regular and effective board meetings. Regular meetings make it easier to assess the developments of the business and the management is also held more accountable in its operations.

6. Do Not Create Lengthy Minutes and Document Action Items

Having lengthy compositions just like any other message tends to distort the original message. For this reason it always advised that in order to have an effective board meeting, the chair should ensure that the minutes are short and precise.

7. Create a Fair Decision Process

For any effective board meeting, each member is required to give their ideas and suggestions. It is important that the board members make decisions as one team. Sometimes, however, this may not be the case. In this scenario, the chair is advised to always go for the majority vote.

8. Be a Good Listener

Being a good leader means being a good listener. To have an effective board meeting, the chair should always lend a listening ear to what others say as they may bring to the table value adding ideas. Encourage people to speak up.

9. Close With Inspiring Words

This makes the board members to work with zeal as they feel more appreciated. One can close the meeting by reminding the members the plans that the organization has in the pipeline and that they will always be part of the success of the organization.

10. Evaluate The Meeting At The End

For every effective board meeting, the chair should ask the members how the meeting has been and from the feedback, he or she can have ideas on how to make the next meeting even better.
Are you looking forward to an effective board meeting? Give the above points a sober consideration and I guarantee they will see your board meetings through in a special way.