Creating an effective agenda for board meetings is a vital aspect of conducting productive meetings. The board meeting agenda sets the tone for discussion and ensures that the board meets its goals.

Whether you’re a board member or an administrator, it’s crucial to understand the best practices for agenda preparation to ensure an effective board meeting. This article will assist you in avoiding the most frequent pitfalls that can sabotage a board meeting’s productivity.

Too Many Questions to Discuss

Too many topics are discussed during a meeting that result in rapid discussions and the inability to devote time to each topic. This reduces the effectiveness of the meeting. To avoid this, you should prioritize the top priority items that are relevant to the purpose of the meeting. If you need to, you can postpone or assign issues that are less urgent to future meeting or to an advisory committee to explore further.

Insufficient Board Participation

The failure to consider the views of board members prevents collaboration and makes it difficult to reach sound, balanced decisions. A good agenda encourages participation by identifying the stakeholders in each discussion, and also allowing for equal time for discussion to prevent one person from dominating the discussion.

Lack of Documentation

It is quite easy for board members to show up at the board meeting unprepared because there aren’t specific guidelines on how to prepare. The agenda for the board should include all relevant documents, such as previous minutes of meetings, reports, and proposals, and arrange them in a chronological order to support productive discussion. The documents should be provided in advance to board members and made accessible through their board portal for read prior to the meeting.