7 Questions to Get Value from Board Meetings

Written by Dave Bailey

Team asking questions in a board meeting

How valuable do you find your board meetings? If you use them only to present results, share your learnings, or provide reassurance that you’re on top of things, you might be leaving value on the table.

Here are seven different ways of getting tangible value from board meetings, and how you might ask for it. 

1) Opposing perspectives

‘I’d like to hear from someone who holds the opposite point of view. How did you come to this perspective?’

2) Experience

‘Has anyone been in a similar situation personally or via a portfolio company? What happened? What would you have done differently?’

3) Network

‘I need to meet people on this list. Please, can you check whether you have a direct connection? If not, could you please make an introduction to someone who is likely to have a connection?’

4) Data

‘This is our baseline. What benchmarks from other companies can you share? Do you have any reports on this? 

5) Approval

‘I’d like to move forward with this initiative. Are there any objections?’

6) Accountability

‘I see this as critically important, so I’ll add a quick follow-up to the next meeting agenda. Will you hold me accountable for this?’

7) Blindspot checks

‘From your point of view, is there anything missing from my agenda? What do you see as the most critical issue we’re facing?’

Before your next board meeting, reflect on this list and write out what would be most valuable to you right now. Then, ask for it. You can even put the questions in your board slides to give people more time to process them — and more time to help you. The worst they can say is ‘no’, right?


Originally published Mar 19, 2021, last updated Jun 1, 2021

communications psychology

About Dave Bailey

Hi, I’m Dave Bailey and I coach tech CEOs from Series A to pre-IPO. Join 20,000 entrepreneurs who receive my new essay every week. 

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