Board engagement is one of the most important aspects of an board of directors. CEOs should have a heightened awareness of board engagement. It is easy for members to slip into disengagement but we have put together three ways to increase engagement of every board member.
1. Make your board members feel valued.
The best board meetings are the product of members feeling vital and valued, taking a genuine interest in the discussion topic and caring about their organization’s vision and mission. Take time to remind your board why they exist – talk about the mission and vision and give clear goals for each meeting. When a chair voices an opinion, thank them for it. Making members feel valued will increase overall engagement
2. Preparation is key.
Give your board members plenty of notice with the meeting agenda before the actual meeting and encourage them to prepare in advance.
Take feedback into consideration when developing the agenda so all members feel like the topics of the meeting are relevant to their interests and concerns. Again, give clear goals for the meetings. Are any decisions going to be made by the end? If so, put that on the agenda so your board members and executive team can be ready to discuss.
3. Expect your members to discuss each item on the agenda.
Having these expectations will motivate your board members to take time to think about each issue and do their research before coming into the meeting.
These markers are just the beginning for engagement but they will get your board talking. Board engagement is one aspect of great board dynamics.
Part 3 Dismantling a Lock-In in the Boardroom: An Emotionally Focused Approach to Board Effectiveness