How to Draft a Board Meeting Agenda (+ Free Template)
Board meetings present an opportunity for the board of directors to follow up on old business, discuss new business, vote on board resolutions, and ensure all board members are on the same page about the organization’s direction. With much to cover, a board meeting agenda helps a meeting stay focused and productive. Read on to learn how to craft an effective agenda.
What is a Board Meeting Agenda?
An agenda is a chronological list of meeting activities, beginning with the call to order and ending with an adjournment. Agendas focus the direction of a meeting, including where and when the meeting shall take place, and contain discussion items such as committee and departmental reports, previous meeting minutes, old business and new business, and a consent agenda.
Elements of an Effective Board Meeting Agenda
An effective board meeting agenda includes the following elements:
1. Agenda Header
Start with the basics. The agenda header should include the name of the organization, convening body, and the date, time, and location of the meeting.
2. Meeting Objective
Next, include the meeting objective. This should state why the board is meeting and the desired outcome.
3. Agenda Body
The agenda body lists the items to cover in the meeting, and includes the bulk of your agenda. Items to include within the agenda body are:
- Review of previous meeting minutes
- Director and committee reports
- Old business discussion
- New business discussion
4. Post-Meeting Action Items
Throughout the meeting, keep track of action items to be performed between this meeting and the next one. Next to each action item, include who will complete it and a deadline.
Board Meeting Agenda Template
Need help creating an agenda for your board of directors? Streamline the process and hold productive meetings by using our free board meeting agenda template.
Board Meeting Agendas and Board Portals
A board portal agenda presents the same information one would encounter on paper, but with additional benefits. Often, you can set time parameters for each section, who should speak, and attach digital approvals, items in need of pre-meeting discussion, key documents, and items requiring an electronic signature. In addition, you can send the agenda to all participants digitally in advance of the meeting.
Getting Started With OnBoard
OnBoard helps boards of all sizes and sectors hold smarter, more effective meetings by making it easier than ever for administrators to collect and organize all of the information needed to craft an effective board meeting agenda and share that information with directors, wherever they are.
With a drag-and-drop agenda builder, live co-authoring, the ability to insert votes, and agenda time management that issues 15-minute reminders before your meeting is scheduled to end, OnBoard streamlines board meetings and improves board performance.
Want to find out if board management software is a good fit for your organization? Download our Board Management Software Buyer’s Guide.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is Typically Discussed at a Board Meeting?
Board meetings gather company leaders to discuss issues the company faces. They review company performance and discuss policies and issues, budgets, elections, etc.
What Should Not be Included in a Board Meeting Agenda?
The agenda should only include discussion items relevant to the board at large. Any business that only involves a couple directors should be handled in a separate meeting.
Who Sets the Agenda for a Board Meeting?
Typically, the board of directors’ chairperson sets the meeting agenda.
Ready to upgrade your board’s effectiveness with OnBoard the board intelligence platform? Schedule a demo or request a free trial.
About The Author
- Adam Wire is a Content Marketing Manager at OnBoard who joined the company in 2021. A Ball State University graduate, Adam worked in various content marketing roles at Angi, USA Football, and Adult & Child Health following a 12-year career in newspapers. His favorite part of the job is problem-solving and helping teammates achieve their goals. He lives in Indianapolis with his wife and two dogs. He’s an avid sports fan and foodie who also enjoys lawn and yard work and running.
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