This activity is for prompting discussion about effective board meetings.
Review this checklist and then in pairs or as a group discuss these questions.
- What are the ways in which your board is effective in meetings?
- What you would like to see more of, or different, in your board meetings?
- What are ways that you as a trustee can contribute to strengthening your board’s meetings?
Checklist for Effective Meetings
- The chair (in some cases the board executive) and the library director work together on the agenda.
- The agenda is brought to the board for additions and approval.
- A consent agenda is used.
- Board meetings are appropriate in length to the work that needs to be done.
- The library director is the secretary of the board unless this role is seconded to another individual.
- Board members are responsible for being prepared for the meeting.
- Meeting packages are sent ahead of time to allow sufficient time to review and consider (a minimum of four days).
- Meeting packages only contain material pertinent to the agenda.
- Meeting materials are accurate, appropriate, and timely.
- Meeting materials provide sufficient information for trustees to discuss and make informed decisions.
- Minutes summarize issues and agreed actions clearly and accurately.
- Meetings start and end on time and agendas are adhered to.
- The agenda and meeting process can accommodate emergent issues and needs.
- Discussions are concise and focused without shutting down voices or rushing decisions.
- Trustees are encouraged to participate and the chair seeks input from everyone.
- Conflict is dealt with constructively and respectfully.
- Decisions are made with clear reference to the vision, mission, values, and strategic direction.
- Fiduciary responsibility and duty of care are apparent in board discussions and decisions. (see Trustee Quick Guide for definitions)
- Action items and responsibilities are clearly understood and recorded in the minutes.
- The board refrains from stepping into the management of operations.