Board Meeting Requirements

The manner in which the board meetings are conducted vary greatly – from formal (all names must match their titles, and they are held in a boardroom that has strict rules and procedures) to informal (meetings can take place in coffee shops or at members home). They could be closed or open to the public, and decisions can be taken by a variety of ways.

The board members must be aware of how decisions will be taken. It could be as easy as deciding to reach consensus or as intricate as implementing a formal vote process with a predetermined majority requirement.

The agenda is the second most important element of a meeting. It should include every topic that is going to be discussed. The agenda is usually distributed in advance to allow members time to prepare for discussions. The agenda should strike a balance between reviewing the past performance and planning for the future. It should also contain time for addressing day to day issues, but it is crucial that the focus is on strategic discussions and not simply catching up.

It’s also essential that the chair of the board conducts the meeting effectively, ensuring that the meeting is at the right time, that everyone has ample time to discuss each item and that all questions are addressed. They must ensure that board doesn’t get distracted and that the discussion is beneficial to the organisation. The chair should facilitate discussion and allow a wide variety of opinions to be heard, and may re-order or remove items from the agenda if needed.