Guidelines for Effective Board Meetings

Guidelines for Effective Board Meetings

Effective board meetings are essential to the success of any company, whether it is a startup or an established company. They require a well-prepared agenda, clear and consistent meeting structure and a well-organized deliberation process to produce strong decisions. These guidelines will help board members focus on the most critical issues and offer their perspective without being distracted by other agenda items.

Focus on the key decision-making processes the board must take and avoid spending too much time on updates. Start the meeting with the most important issues that require an answer. This will ensure that the discussions take up the bulk of the time available.

Encourage a respectful and cooperative discussion where all opinions are weighed equally. This will foster a sense of trust and open communication, and ensure that all parties are engaged in productive discussions. Make sure that the process of voting is fair and transparent and that all members of the board are given equal opportunities to take part (see below “Manage time”).

Foster accountability for the follow-up and implementation of decisions, actions and suggestions from each board meeting. This can be accomplished through regular report on progress, clear division of responsibility, and systems for recording and tracking results.

Set aside time at the start or at the conclusion of each board meeting for an executive session, which enables non-executive board members to discuss issues of importance with management team members privately. This helps ensure that the Board is in sync with the CEO’s perspective.