If you’re conducting an in-person meeting in your boardroom, or a remote board meeting from your home, there are some essential techniques that can help your meetings flow smoothly and efficiently.

Punctuality, preparation and starting on time are great ways to start. Make sure that board members have all the material they require prior to the meeting. A well-written agenda that is clear and easy to distribution before the meeting date can help keep the meeting focused.

Avoid spending time on reports. Reports that are long can drown out the board’s conversation. Discuss committee and leadership reports only when you require them to make decisions or oversee the board. The rest can be handled by email or in smaller meetings.

Limit discussions about features and roadmaps for product — A company’s direction should not be influenced by what the CEO thinks the market wants. If you must talk about your product, think about the reasons behind your decision to follow certain directions. This will aid in staying on track and avoid the «Enron» effect, in which a board was too hands-off to see that issues were developing below the surface.

Schedule intervals for candor — These short periods of silence allow board members to talk about issues that they feel uncomfortable discussing with their peers. These breaks are often needed to ensure that everyone’s opinions are heard and they feel comfortable expressing survey board room com themselves.

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