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Orientation Guide for Committees & Officers: Hints for Running Successful Meetings

Hints for Running Successful Meetings
by Ellen Broidy

1. Always prepare and distribute an agenda in advance of the meeting. Time permitting (in our too busy schedules), send out a preliminary agenda with a call for additional items.

2. Make it clear whether the meeting is opened or closed (only Awards currently a closed session).

3. Next to each item on the agenda, include list of documents needed for the meeting or documents to review prior to the meeting.

4. Insofar as humanly possible, indicate time allotted for reach item on the agenda, including introductions, announcements, etc.

5. Arrive on time for the meeting; in fact, if you are chair, be sure to be there first.

6. Bring copies of the agenda and accompanying documents (if not overwhelming) for guests and for folks who have lost their luggage on the way to the conference.

7. Ask everyone at the meeting to introduce her/himself – even if you think everyone knows everyone else. Name, position, institution, committee member or guest.

8. Review the agenda; ask for last minute, time permitting additions.

9. Stick as closely as possible to the agenda and timelines.

10. Be aware of who has spoken and who has not. Try not to let any one voice dominate the discussion. Acknowledge participation.

11. To insure equitable participation, it may be necessary to ask silent committee members directly if they have anything to say/add to the discussion before moving on to the next agenda item.

12. Do a quick wrap-up after completing the agenda item. For the note taker’s sake and for the sake of continuity, indicate action taken, assignments made, discussions pending. Be sure to come to some sort of closure on each topic, even if that closure is to table the discussion for a later date.

13. At end of the meeting, review actions taken, see what still needs doing, begin a very preliminary agenda for the next meeting (at annual, midwinter).

14. Decide what you need to report back to the WSS Executive Board.

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Last updated: July 18, 2013
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July 18, 2013