At board meetings, top leaders gather to discuss and debate strategic issues that face their organisations. The results of these discussions determine organizational direction and impact everything from investor confidence to public perception. It’s important for board directors ensure maximum efficiency and effectiveness during their meetings. This article gives suggestions on how to conduct board meetings in a manner that encourages productive and engaging discussions.
Begin by welcoming and introducing board members to one another, particularly when the participants are new to the group. This sets the stage for a collaborative board meeting, assists in establishing an appropriate manner of conducting the boardroom, and encourages participation.
This shows respect for the time of other directors and discourages tardiness. This is especially crucial when a meeting is held online and where balancing time can be a challenge.
Do not waste time on trite or routine items such as committee reports and voting. Instead, limit these to 25 percent of the meeting and make the most of your time to discuss strategy and other key subjects.
Make clear the manner in which decisions will be taken at the meeting (consensus voting or a different method). This ensures that all board members know the process of making decisions and are able to participate in meaningful discussions.
Get feedback from your board members on their satisfaction with the way you conduct board meetings. You can do this through informal discussions, or using polling tools and surveys. For example, you might inquire whether the structure of the meeting and content allows for a lively discussion or ask them evaluate the different aspects of a meeting using the basis of a numerical scale.