Board meetings are held so members of a board of directors can make decisions regarding the direction of a company. In most cases, the board is comprised, at the very least, of a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. There may be additional officers present at these meetings, or advisors to the board.
Often, board meetings must be held publicly, though frequently only the board members attend. Board members vote on decisions regarding the company and there normally must be a quorum in order for the meeting to be considered legal. A quorum, unless otherwise defined by the board represents at least half of the board members.
During these meetings, the secretary records all discussion and actions taken by the board, called the minutes. The secretary will then type up the minutes, which usually must be filed and kept in case there is any government investigation of the board at a later date. Minutes also may need to be presented to the public should there be a request for such from the public.
The first topic of most board meetings is reading of the minutes. The secretary will briefly summarize the minutes of the previous meeting. Next is resolution of old business. Anything that was unresolved in the previous meeting will perhaps be resolved at the current meeting or be postponed for a future meeting.
In some cases, the next presentation is a financial report. This may take place after old business is concluded, or may take place later in the meeting. People then tend to discuss new business, which involve any new concerns or issues raised by the board.
If additional comments or issues are raised in board meetings for which more information must be provided, the board will usually decide not to vote on an issue until the next meeting. Thus some new business may become the next meeting’s old business.
New business will include voting on any current issues, and the board may also listen to presentations by non-board members to help them make decisions. Sometimes the head or CEO of a company, who is not a part of the board, makes a presentation.
Usually board meetings conclude with someone suggesting the meeting be closed, and another person seconding this suggestion. Unless other people have material to present, the meeting is usually considered finished at this point and the secretary can cease recording.