Don’t Let Them Get Lost in the Weeds
At our first mini-conference, Susan Hammond president of scHammond Advisors, gave a very powerful presentation on creating powerful organizations. She gave several tips on creating boards, and how to make your current one powerful and strong. The following video is a clip from this presentation on creating effective and efficient board meetings. If you would like more information on Susan please visit her at scHammond.com. If you would like help with your Board, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Susan is the author of the Advisory Board Kit.
Highlights from this clip are below the video. To see more clips from the Non-Profit Toolbox click here.
I’m sure that people have been at board meetings where the conversation is around a $200 postal charge when the building is falling down. This is as much managements fault or who ever is in charge of the meeting.
One of the key ways is to use a consent agenda. With a consent agenda you send all the materials before hand, everyone reads them, and if there are issues they bring them to the attention of the board chair and taken off the consent agenda. At the meeting there is one vote to approve the agenda. This saves the board a tremendous amount of time and leaves the rest of the meeting to discus important strategic issues.
It takes time to get the board used to this format. Even if you have a working board, Susan recommends this process.
Send the materials & agenda at least 10 days in advance. You can use email or a shared data base like google docs, basecamp or dropbox.
The finance committee needs to meet before the board meetings so any pressing issues can be in the consent agenda. If you don’t have a finance committee, use the executive committee.
If you don’t go to a consent agenda, still get away from reading the board reports. The more you do that the more permission you give for people to be unprepared.
Want to learn more about Creating Powerful Organizations? Join us at our next non-profit mini-conference.