Dealing With Unprepared Board Members

As with any group setting, when you bring a board of directors together, some members will be more prepared than others. Most directors will study reports in advance and be ready to share their input accordingly.

Others, however, may feel more inclined to coast through the meeting, glean what they can, and share opinionated statements on the spot.

These unprepared board members can occasionally create a difficult group dynamic.

The good news, though, is that there are steps your board can take towards encouraging (and even helping) members to adequately prepare.

Continue reading

making meetings effective

Making Meetings Effective

Most organizations call meetings the cornerstone of business communication. Has the rise of email, meeting software, and apps like Slack stepped in to help unburden the meeting-inundated? Yes! But the meeting is still the basic activity that drives industry forward—particularly for boards of directors.

That being said, it’s clear that the meeting could use a little modernizing. Time has become the most valuable business commodity, which means that saving time, encouraging efficiency, and developing effectiveness are some of the smartest choices that leaders can make.

Here are our tips for making meetings more effective for everyone involved:

1. Determine whether the meeting really needs to happen.

Continue reading

How to Take Meeting Minutes

how to take meeting minutes

For many people, the phrase “taking minutes” can be intimidating. The individual who is taking the minutes needs to be keenly aware of what is happening during the board meeting, but they won’t be expected to quote everything that their fellow board members have said.

The purpose of taking board meeting minutes is mostly to provide a legal record of motions, votes, next steps, the progress of action items, etc.

For that reason, it’s important that the minute-taker follow along closely with the movement of the meeting and the decisions made within it. The minute-taker need not record anything that could be viewed as subjective—in fact, they should avoid using adjectives and adverbs to ensure that they’re only recording factual information from the meeting at hand.
Continue reading

Ways to Streamline Board Admin Duties

streamline board admin duties

Last week, we talked about being grateful for various colleagues in the boardroom, and board admins were at the very top of that list.

The role of the admin used to be burdened by an excessive amount of preparation: gathering materials, organizing information, printing, distributing, making edits, reprinting, and redistributing.

Today, thanks to board management software, your board admin’s full plate of responsibilities just got way more manageable. Check out some ways to streamline board admin duties below

Gathering & Organizing Materials

Boards admins are tasked with collecting reports from various departments in order to provide board members with an overall picture of the company’s current situation. Although the computer age has simplified this process through the advent of digital documents, board portal software has provided a centralized space for that information.

Rather than waiting until all the information has been assembled, admins can begin the agenda organizing process as soon as they have the first piece of data.

The process continues as more data and reports make their way to the admin, who can easily drop them into a digital agenda with accompanying PDF documents.
Continue reading

Four Questions About Board Surveys

The New York Stock Exchange requires listed companies to participate in some form of annual self-evaluation, so many organizations already have a board surveys in place. But for some of these companies, board self-assessments are met with an attitude of obligation instead of embracing the potential benefits of a well-executed survey. For other smaller companies, this practice has simply been overlooked in the past.
board surveys

However, there are many reasons why all boards should view annual self-assessments as an outstanding resource for bettering their overall functionality. For example:

  • Board surveys can help identify group strengths and weaknesses.
  • Willingness to self-assess sets the tone for the organization at large; it shows that board members are taking their roles seriously by reviewing their own performances through a critical lens.
  • Discussing board members’ responsibilities and goals can create a more unified and collaborative working environment.
  • Tracking year-over-year changes in board members’ responses can provide meaningful insight into a changing board landscape.

Continue reading