Committee Meetings

Well-planned and efficiently managed committee meetings can be a source of pleasure as well as productivity. A chairman can be an efficient meeting manager by planning ahead.

Before the Meeting

  1. Determine the necessity and relevance of the meeting.
  2. Since all voting must be handled in person, if there are a couple of items of business to take care of, plan to shorten the meeting. Effective meetings do not need to be lengthy. Meet briefly to vote officially and record the committees’ decisions.
  3. Whenever possible, send or e-mail an agenda in advance to committee members—or at least provide one when committee members arrive. Indicate a starting and ending time. Be specific about topics to be discussed and decisions to be made.
  4. Organize thoughts and materials—and come prepared!

During the Meeting

Since committee meetings are usually conducted in an informal manner, the rules of parliamentary procedure for motions, seconds, and voting, can be replaced by the use of general consent or consensus. A good working relationship is established when the leader acts as a facilitator and provides a relaxed and supportive atmosphere.

  1. Begin on time. If the leader will be conducting business and the group is short of a quorum, wait to discuss action items until a quorum is present.
  2. Briefly review the agenda and the purpose of the meeting.
  3. When necessary, pause, reflect, and summarize, so everyone is aware of what is being accomplished.
  4. Encourage each committee member to participate. Courteously discourage those who monopolize the floor and encourage the shy ones to speak. Reinforce the fact that the committee needs to hear from everyone in order to combine all good ideas and suggestions.
  5. Before adjourning, sum up what decisions were made and what future assignments designated. Does everyone know who is to do what and by when? If practical, set the date of the next meeting; otherwise, assure members the leader will notify them later.
  6. As chairman, set the tone by being optimistic and enthusiastic about the committee’s tasks. Members will share that excitement.

Meetings must be held to vote on issues. Voting by proxy is prohibited. This also means no absentee voting or voting by mail, email, or phone.

quorum for committee: a simple majority of the members sitting on a committee (Committee Development and Guidelines). See Bylaws for Local PTA/PTSA Units, Article IX, Section I.

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