Understanding board meeting agenda: Requirements, Templates, and Best Practices

An essential factor in the fruitful holding of the board meeting is the correctly formulated agenda since it reflects the board’s main tasks. This article will consider the board meeting agenda’s requirements, templates, and best practices.

The role of agenda on a board meeting

The board meeting agenda is a list of items to be discussed at the meeting. The chairman of the meeting determines them. However, the secretary may also be involved in this process. There are many options for meeting agendas. Each enterprise and organization creates it based on its preferences. Each collegial event (meeting, session, meeting) takes a lot of time from various specialists. One of the main factors influencing the fruitful results of collegial activities is the careful preparation of the meeting (sessions, meetings), which is an essential functional responsibility of the secretary. After the manager has given the direction for the meeting, the secretary needs to ask three basic questions:

    • the purpose of the meeting;
    • the time of the event;
    • composition of participants.

Board software for automated agendas

Today the board of directors widely uses board portals for arranging online meetings and routine automation processes related to it. It is a digital platform designed to streamline the collaboration of collegial bodies. As a rule, the standard set of functions of a board portal solution includes the following:

      • Maintaining directories of collegiate management bodies and users.
      • Maintaining a meeting calendar and automatically sending notifications to users.
      • Formation of the meeting agenda with the help of the board meeting agenda template – indicating the main information on the meeting, adding agenda items, indicating speakers and posting materials.
      • Distribution of the agenda and materials among the participants of the meetings and collection of feedback.
      • Working with meeting materials – viewing and annotating documents, agreeing and signing documents with an electronic signature, and working with documents without connecting to the Internet.
      • Tools for communication of participants using chats and interaction with video conferencing.
      • Voting on the meeting agenda with the opportunity to leave a dissenting opinion.
      • Formation of documents in electronic form according to templates (bulletins, protocols, etc.).
      • Setting and monitoring the execution of orders.

Another value of the board management software lies in its promotion of collaboration and practical discussion. It is important for several reasons, not the least of which is that directors have limited meeting time.

The comprehensive guide on how to create board meeting agenda

There is the following guidelines when setting the board meeting agenda:

    • Divide meeting topics that are too broad into several subtopics. Responsible persons may hold preparatory meetings for each sub-theme if necessary.
    • Put issues of equal importance on the agenda, united by a common theme.
    • Make the agenda only of issues within the competence and area of responsibility of the meeting participants. For example, discussing supply issues without the head of supply would be useless.
    • Limit the number of topics and agenda items. They should be as many as can be effectively discussed and resolved within the allotted period. For example, for 1 hour of the meeting, you can discuss from 1 to 5 issues, depending on the scale of the topics discussed and the quality of the preparation of the meeting.
    • Include in the agenda a report on assignments and assignments given at the last meeting if a common theme and composition of participants unite the conferences. Be prepared that, even if such an item is not on the agenda, the chairman can introduce it with his authority. Therefore, it is better to print out the list of instructions in advance – the chairman, the responsible person, and the secretary should have it.