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Depending on the structure of the group/organisation you could have various kinds of meetings.

For example:

  • representative meetings, (only for representatives of various workgroups)
  • general meetings, (open for members only)
  • public meetings (open for everyone)

It is recommended to choose a fixed day for each kind of meeting.


  • agenda
  • chairperson/facilitator
  • minute taker

Role of the ‘Chair

  • the chair does not contribute to the debate, unless invited to by the meeting:
    – to contribute specific information
    – to cast the deciding vote in the event of a hung vote
  • will attempt to take speakers in the sequence in which they have indicated a wish to speak, by raising their hand
  • will keep the discussion strictly to the agenda
  • if any matter is raised outside the agenda, the chair will decide:
    – wether to deal with it in ‘any other business’
    – or place it on the agenda for next meeting

Prior to the meeting

  • a chair and minute taker must have been nominated
  • announcement of forthcoming meeting via email or phone

Announcement should:

  • sent on time: venue, date, time (preferable 7 days in advance)
  • include the agenda¬† (attenders can prepare) and minutes of previous meeting
  • invitte to add topics to the agenda (to be add before……date)
  • include name of the person who is called to the chair
  • include name of the person who will take the minutes

At the meeting

  • ‘apologies’ (people who can not attend)
  • ‘minutes’ (of previous meeting) – confirmed or amended
  • minutes’record those attending
  • ‘agenda’ – as listed
  • invitation to add topics (if not already done prior the meeting)
  • agreement on topics, prioritisation and time allocation through the chair
  • ‘any other business’ – facility for all attenders for a notification, query, etc.
  • date, time venue of next meeting – agreed by the meeting
  • deadline for next meeting’s agenda items
  • closing of the meeting by the chair

During the meeting

  • respect to others: do not interrupt, do not talk too long, make your point clear
  • decisions taken by voting/concensus

Votes should be taken on all agenda items and should be in two parts

  • first: to find if there is a clear majority who wish to vote NOW on this matter
    – because they accept the wording of the proposal
    – believe they have enough info and understanding on the topic
  • secondly: the actual decision making vote


  • sent to attenders as soon as possible after meeting
  • notification of: attenders of the meeting, absence, apologies for absence
  • report of the meeting
  • actions to be taken by … (name of person)¬† before…. (date)

    Minutes, an example