nonprofit boards

Small board rules are different

By Ann Macfarlane / May 31, 2017 /

Updated July 14, 2021 The different rules for small boards are one of the best-kept secrets of Robert’s Rules of Order. If you serve on a small board (up to about 12 people) you may benefit from the flexibility that the rules for small boards offer. Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, 12th edition says…

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You can’t vote by email

By Ann Macfarlane / October 12, 2016 / Comments Off on You can’t vote by email
can't vote by email

Updated May 1, 2023 Several of our clients have been startled recently to learn that they can’t vote by email. Email is so ubiquitous and useful that it seems like a natural way to make decisions. For boards, it is not. The essential nature of a board of directors is to meet, discuss and decide…

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Amend bylaws or revise bylaws?

By Ann Macfarlane / August 9, 2016 /
amend bylaws

A reader contacted us to find out how to tackle a number of changes needed for his bylaws. He was uncertain as to how to go about it and felt intimidated by the task. While it’s true that almost everyone hates bylaws (attorneys and parliamentarians are the exception), it is possible to change them without…

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Detailed minutes put your board at risk

By Ann Macfarlane / November 4, 2015 /
red warning sign

Do you include what directors say in the minutes of your nonprofit board meetings? Jurassic Parliament strongly recommends that you stop immediately. Detailed accounts of “who said what to whom” in your minutes are dangerous. In the worst case, they provide fodder for your opponents should your board ever be involved in a lawsuit.  In…

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