How to run an effective board meeting

September 23, 2021

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Meetings

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Running an effective board meeting is a touch artform and a touch science.

During a recent BoardPro webinar, governance experts John Page and Graeme Nahkies delved into the common mistakes directors make when organising and running a board meeting, including, treating it as a management meeting. “Spectators of management’s busyness is not great,” said Page.

“For a board meeting to be successful it has to be well planned. And it's got to be more than just a list of agenda topics. It's got to have something that holds it together, whether that's a theme or just the way the topics are organised so that they have a logical sequence,” says Nahkies.

For Page and Nahkies, the top board meeting tips they would offer directors and board members are as follows:

  • Focus on governance matters, not operational matters
  • Ensure meetings are planned so that attention is focused on key matters when directors are freshest. For example, strategy first, compliance last
  • Take as long as is required for sound governance to take place
  • Avoid speedy meetings as they aren’t the basis for sound performance
  • Ensure the meeting is built on dialogue, not debate
  • Directors should try to suspend judgment until the issue is thoroughly explored
  • Adopt and use effective decision-making processes

From ensuring that board meetings are run with “more intentionality,” as Nahkies describes to what focuses the meeting should revolve around and what the role of the board chair is, watch the full webinar here to learn how to run your next board meeting with greater clarity, structure and effectiveness.

Webinar Transcript

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