Galvin and Associates

Problem: Board meetings usually go late



It is not unusual for evening board meetings of nonprofits to go late into the night. This is due to several factors, including long agendas, lack of preparation of board members, and board members delving into micromanaging. The board chair should be the person who manages the discussion and determines when some items should be pushed forward to the next meeting. It is possible to end meetings on time with a simple board policy that says something such as all board meetings will start at 7:00 and end promptly at 9:00, unless the board decides by unanimous vote to extend the meeting. Managing boards may also set a similar guideline and include it in their operations handbook. A firm start and stopping time will put pressure on the board chair to plan the agenda well and put the most pressing topics early in the meeting. It will also help board members know when any topic has been discussed thoroughly enough.

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