How to Have a Great Board Meeting

A good board meeting is an opportunity for discussions about important business issues and decision-making, and also for establishing company policies. To get the most value from every board meeting requires careful planning ahead of time, managing expectations about the amount of discussion feasible, and staying in line with the agenda.

To avoid boring meetings, establish reasonable goals for meetings. Review them frequently to ensure that the meeting stays on the right track. Being too involved with technicalities or reports that could have been discussed prior to the meeting can hinder the chance to allow the board members to discuss business issues of strategic importance that cannot be easily resolved by your management team alone.

Create a consent agenda to cut down on the amount of time spent in meetings. This allows the board to swiftly approve any documents or reports that don’t require further discussion and will keep the meeting from getting too long.

Distribute board packets three to four days prior to the meeting, so that attendees can go through them prior to the meeting. This will cut down on the amount of time at the meeting reading reports and also gives attendees a time to ask questions prior to they get more complicated.

Include a “parking lot” at the end of the board package to ensure that items that are not relevant to this meeting can be left to another meeting and not interfere with the most important agenda items. This will also lower the risk of the most important items on the agenda being delayed until later in the meeting or not being discussed in any way.

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