Resources for Alumni Volunteers

Tips for hosting board meetings

  • When planning your agenda, keep in mind which time zones your participants are in.
  • Start the meeting with brief instructions to ensure everyone knows how to use the virtual meeting software. Consider sending out materials prior to the meeting that answer common questions.
    • Encourage participants/presenters to silence cell phones
    • Encourage participants to find a place in their home with minimal distractions
  • Password-protect your meeting.
  • Give attendees plenty of time to connect and greet each other prior to the meeting, as well as test their audio/video connections.
  • At the start of your meeting, take a roll call to ensure you know who is present.
  • Take more frequent, short breaks than you would during an in-person meeting — every 8-10 minutes. This could be an actual break from the meeting or a visual break to split up content.
  • Consider how your meeting cadence might change now that attendees don’t need to travel. Can you have more frequent, shorter meetings?
  • If using Zoom, use the waiting room feature to allow participants into the meeting either one by one or as a group.
  • If using Zoom, consider using the breakout feature for smaller-group work so attendees only need to call in once.
  • To avoid distractions, have someone who isn’t running the meeting monitor the chat room/raise-hand features.
    • Through settings, this individual can be a cohost with the same permissions as the host.
  • If there are multiple speakers and each have visuals, collect and combine them ahead of time so the meeting is seamless. The cohost can manage the changing visuals.