How we run board meetings at Seeking Alpha

Before the meeting

  1. Invite input — ask the board members before the meeting for their wish list of discussion topics for the meeting and board packet.
  2. Send out the board packet early — to allow everyone to read it in advance.
  3. No powerpoint in the board packet — because it isn’t conducive to rigorous analysis. Instead, I write a letter which references a comprehensive set of  time-series charts.
  4. Be transparent — share the board packet with the whole company before sending it to board members, and ask for comments. (We use Google docs.)

The meeting itself

  1. No dial-ins — because it kills the conversation. If someone can’t attend, I’ll call them the following week to update them.
  2. All VPs attend — and a crucial part of my job to showcase how great they are.
  3. Don’t go through the board materials during the meeting — we assume everyone read them in advance.
  4. No texting or emailing during the meeting — so we provide a break for people to make calls or email.
  5. Never make decisions during the board meeting — group dynamics are unpredictable and an unreliable decision making mechanism.
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