The Importance of a Well-Designed Board Meeting Agenda

A well-designed agenda for board meetings is the basis for productive meetings. It is not the only thing. The most important thing is a motivated and prepared board of directors. A good agenda for an annual board meeting does more than establish the structure of a meeting. It allows for discussion and acknowledges diverse opinions.

A competent chairperson is required to run a meeting well, regardless of the agenda. A competent board chair is able to keep the discussion on track, avoid discussions which stray from the main topic, and adhere to the time limits.

The board chair will call the meeting to order and then make a few welcoming remarks. They then ask if anyone has any changes or additions they would like to make to the agenda and if there’s a sufficient quorum. They then review the minutes of the previous meeting and then approve the minutes. They then discuss and vote on any items for action.

To prevent meetings from becoming overly long, allocate a specific amount of time per agenda item. This will allow for a productive discussion without getting bogged down in unnecessary details. By providing board members with time estimates for each item on the agenda they can plan and block their agendas according to this.

A good agenda for board meetings includes a «big picture» section that offers the board members with an opportunity to share high-level updates and company’s vision. This section also has a space to include reports from committees, and it highlights any unfinished items from the previous meeting that should be addressed.

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