I like helping groups have more effective meetings. A part of that is to have an agenda and to stick to the agenda. I believe that an agenda should be circulated prior to the meeting. Two reasons for this are:
1. So that members can see if there are any issues that are going to be discussed where they might have a conflict of interest. Identifying a conflict prior to the board package being prepared is crucial so that the board member in conflict is not provided with information that they should not see.
2. So that the board members can be sure that the items being discussed are going to be about strategy not implementation. We want to use our board members in the most efficient way possible and this includes not doing committee work at the board room table.
Circulating the agenda early allows board members to make the decisions about what should be discussed at the meeting and that will lead to a more effective meeting.