Board Meetings. As Easy As A Dinner Party

by Oscar

First, everybody involved in any company wants to achieve success success as measured by making money together and in all the other psychic currencies in which success is traded. Never, ever lose sight of that objective. Repeat it often. Never forget it. Remind people.

If your Board meetings become bored meetings, then you are not focused on making money. Cause making money is exciting.

Do not demonize anyone on your team. Just get them to play their position and play it well and at an improving standard of play. Practice hard. You will play the way you practice.

Every Board has to have a leader, appropriate committees, charters (Board, ethics, nominations, audit, etc) and it has to have an operating agreement.

The Board Chairman has to be the guy who can develop, nurture and burnish the relationship with the CEO. And, it takes work to do that. He should have a bit of gray hair and more than a few rodeo ticket stubs.

If you think just getting folks to turn off their phones and shut down their laptops/iPads is an operating agreement then you are in first grade metaphorically speaking.

The CEO or Board Chairman has to develop a standard meeting agenda which includes the normal stuff but also time for topics like education, what can kill us?, brainstorming.

It has to be time weighted budget the time and have a time keeper who keeps everyone on track. Nicely, gentlemanly but firmly.

Brainstorming focused on strategic issues is particularly important but cannot be done justice if briefly visited as everybody is thinking about dinner, rush hour traffic and is fatigued by the prior meeting.

The Board materials have to be in the hands of the Board 4 days before the meeting and they have to be comprehensive and include info that is NOT going to be discussed at the Board meeting. If the Board reads and understands the material in the book, then discussion becomes much more limited.

You have to keep a parking lot the place you stick discussions that are not completed and which merit future discussion. Then you have to re-visit it.

Board members have to meet for part of the time out of the presence of management and have a quick checklist hows our CEO doing, we doing our jobs as Board members?

If you develop these disciplines before times of crisis, then when the crisis comes, you will have the personal and emotional capital to deal with things.

More importantly if you have an orderly process, an operating agreement and a good leader you will have more time than you can ever imagine. To spend on the important things.

Always eat together as it is a natural decompression mechanism.

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