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The Leadership Puzzle: The Meeting [VIDEO]

Written by Adorna Carroll Posted On Wednesday, 29 June 2022 00:00

As a leader or volunteer, we’ve all attended meetings. Some are good, and some are not so good. It all depends on the quality of the Chair.

The first thing to note is that the Chair does not have the ability to speak to any issue. That’s a shock to some, right? The Chair is charged with moving the meeting along, not participating in the discussions. If the Chair wants to participate, they would need to pass the gavel to someone else; and no good chair ever wants to pass the gavel. This is why the Chair actively participates on the Leadership Team where recommendations are passed on to the Board at the meeting.

The Chair is responsible for making sure that meetings start on time, that everyone’s time is respected, that no networking or chit-chat occurs – the Chair keeps everyone on point. Sometimes the discussions become passionate but without personal attacks or hostility. Participants should learn how to “agree to disagree.”

The Leadership Team can batch the action items so voting can be handled by the Board while guests are excused from the room. Don’t hold a meeting just for the sake of meeting -- if there is no real business to be discussed, then cancel the meeting.

Also, don’t try to set aside fiduciary duties by declaring that the meeting will be informal. Robert Rules are designed to make the meeting more effective and less likely to be disrupted by inappropriate behavior.

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