Board of directors are an excellent way for a company to discuss and debate key strategic decisions. The proceedings are a critical aspect of a company’s governance setting the tone for the future’s productivity and success. By adhering to a set best practices can ensure that the board’s meeting agenda is well-organized and effective that leads to productive discussions that promote organizational growth.

A well-run board meeting begins with clearly defining what is expected of the meeting and making sure that all legal issues are taken into consideration. This includes provisions within governance documents that limit the attendance and participation of members with competing claims as well as the rules for participants who have observer status.

Discussion of the most important business issues is a key element of every board meeting, which includes the review and approval of financial reports as well as discussing important policy issues. The agenda should include time for board members to reflect on their current performance and discuss ways they can improve.

Inadequate preparation and poor communication can result in a haphazard meeting and a disjointed agenda that fails to address the most important business issues. A well-crafted agenda and clear minutes will reduce the risk of miscommunications and disagreements, and also ensure that all decisions are made in a legal and informed way. The board must also avoid getting lost in discussion topics that aren’t on the top of the most urgent agenda to discuss at the meeting. Instead they should designate a “parking area” at the end of their agenda to allow for these items.