Board meetings are a serious responsibility that requires careful planning, a reasonable pace, and an acute awareness of the time and effort spent by board members. Board management software tools, such as portals, can assist in this endeavor by making it easier to prepare agendas and meeting materials ahead of time. This will increase the number of participants and allow board members to examine directives and other decisions in advance.
The first step is to clearly communicate the decision-making procedure to the board. By clearly stating whether your board will rely on consensus or voting methods of making decisions, everyone will be aware of what is expected at the time of the meeting. It also helps to avoid confusion, such as when a director raises an issue that’s already been discussed at a prior meeting.
After settling old business, the board then moves on to the next item on the agenda. Like all discussions it is crucial to respect the rights of other board members to speak. Only one director can speak at each time, and they should wait until their turn to be called on by the chair. The board chair must also supervise the discussion, facilitating the conversation and ensuring all members of the board are involved.
The board votes on the new item of business and then records its decisions in the minutes of its official meeting. When a member is not satisfied with the outcome of the vote, they may ask that it be reconsidered or request that the issue be referred to a committee for further consideration.