Your board of directors plays a crucial role in the success of your community. Preparation and planning are key to maximizing the value of your board meetings. Here are some key tips for a successful board meeting to help you be more productive:

Make a detailed agenda and then send it out before the meeting. This gives board members an opportunity to read the agenda in advance and ask questions, as well as prepare for the discussion.

You might want to consider holding your board meetings in a setting that is public, such as the local library, or a conference room at the local business. This will eliminate distractions like pets, children and ringing telephones, which can distract a discussion.

Choose a person to take detailed minutes of the meeting. This will ensure that important decisions are recorded, and the board will have a record of what was discussed.

Limit the amount of time allotted for each item on the agenda to ensure that the meeting continues to flow and avoid diverging topics. If you find that an agenda item drags on for too long, agree to move it to an “parking lot” to be discussed later so that the major issues remain front and center.

Explain the process for making decisions at the meeting. This will allow everyone to comprehend the discussion and participate, whether it is through consensus or voting.

Encourage C-level officers and their staff to attend the meeting to offer their expertise. This will allow the board to hear directly from individuals who are closest to the action and most qualified to offer advice.

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