An effective board meeting is a critical component of successful governance. The Board of Directors meets to discuss and decide on company-critical issues, and ensure that the company is headed in the right directions. It may be difficult however there are simple guidelines to follow that will enable you to conduct productive meetings and make informed decisions.

It is important to prepare ahead and communicate the agenda with everyone before the meeting. An agenda that is clear will outline the most important topics and allocate appropriate amounts of time to each discussion. This keeps meetings from getting off-topic, becoming a slog in repetition or turning into an event where only few people to participate instead of an inclusive dialogue among the whole Board.

Prioritize just two major questions to be addressed at each meeting. This is a great practice that helps narrow the discussion and limit the number of items to be reviewed during the meeting. This allows for more time to be spent on each issue, and the possibility of making a decision, as opposed to just sharing updates. The book for the board allows easy sharing of updates, and a little time can be allocated to them during the meeting.

Be clear about the manner in which decisions will be made. This will ensure that all members are on the same page, and that they are all aware of the decision-making process. It also establishes expectations for the kind of discussions that will be held during the meeting, like finding common ground and examining different perspectives or resolving disputes by voting.

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