A board book is a collection of materials and information relevant to an organisation and its board of directors. It contains key resources that directors can consult during their preparation.
A board book can be a written or digital document. Copies of these books are distributed to the board of directors in advance of a meeting. They help keep meetings organised by putting all relevant information about the forthcoming meeting in one place.
Organisations should have a standard board book template. It is good practice to limit these documents to around ten pages for a typical board meeting and 20 for special ones. However, each company should adapt the board book to their unique circumstances.
These are the core components of a board book:
An agenda can be thought of as a meeting’s table of contents. It includes topics, issues, action items and policies that should be discussed during the meeting. It also lists time slots for each agenda item to keep the meeting on track.
Meeting minutes are a record of what happened during a board meeting. Board books should include the previous meeting minutes so that directors can read them and approve them as an accurate reflection of events.
Reports in the form of spreadsheets, graphs and charts bring the board members up to speed on the latest developments that occurred since the last board meeting. These documents inform the discussion in the meeting and help the board to develop strategic plans that will be of most benefit to the business in the future.
Supporting documents include information that expands on the agenda items. These documents can be forms, pre-reads or short presentations to support the board meeting topics.
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