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  • RONR Message Board – Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised
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  1. Greetings: I need a big nudge to keep the Board meetings of our Historical Society in order. Before I became the president, I understand our Board meetings were run haphazardly. Everything discussed was intermingled with discussions about other topics (Eg: a discussion about should we fix the porch roof of the Museum would wander to should we send a survey to our members to see who can help with a yard sale to help pay for the roof repairs. What day should the yard sale be held on? I think we should have a bake sale during the yard sale. Who's going to call the roofer? Marge can bake some cookies. What's wrong with the roof?...). After I became President the meetings have improved but I have a very long way to go. Including myself there are 11 members on the Board. I started asking Board members 2 weeks before the meetings for topics to put on the agenda. One week before the meeting I'll e-mail the Board the agenda (This way our Board is not totally blind-sided about what will be discussed. The Board made hasty decisions in the past that often made more work, more expense, or dwindling community support). Unfortunately it is rare I receive anything for the agenda. Most agenda items are what I would like us do and I'm not happy doing that. I'd rather have our Board members set the agenda. Since most agenda items are what I would like, I'm the one suggesting someone make a motion. In order to get our Board members to BE Board members, should I totally refrain from putting my things on the agenda, and wait in total silence at meetings for a Board member to make a main motion to discuss something? At our meetings, after someone (Jack) makes a main motion and seconded (Mary), someone else (Tony) speaks without asking for the floor. I'll tell Tony to wait until Jack has offered details. Instead, Jack will say, "No, go ahead Tony. What are your thoughts". Several Board members will chime in directly after each other, sometimes interrupting each other, sometimes more than one talking at once. I'll gavel and ask for order and tell them to ask for the floor. Right after I give someone the floor and the person starts talking, the same clatter and chaos starts up again. One Board member (who happens to be the president of our local Library Board), said at one point, “Why do we need a [main] motion to discuss something? Can't we just openly discuss then take a vote?” I can not control this Board. It is like a coffee shop with everyone yapping. We often accomplish very little. The few things we've had under Old and New business should take 20-30 minutes. Our Old and New business often takes an hour or more. Last month after 90 minutes most of our New business was tabled (by vote). After we voted I said, "If we stop all our chit-chatting we would have the time". Our Secretary said, “Who's chit-chatting?” She's the biggest offender. I stayed calm and quiet and glared at her. She responded by sticking her tongue out at me. H-E-L-P !! Is there a well-made video showing both the bad and good ways a “simple” meeting should be conducted? Is there a one page summary of the basic Robert's Rules I can give our Board... and for me to refer to? (I have a copy of Robert's Rules newly revised 11th, and Robert's Rules in brief). Thanks - David (upstate NY) PS - Sorry for the long details, but sometimes details are better said up front.
  2. Our organization has a Special Committee whose chairperson has started to run amok. She seems to believe that the general membership has granted her committee (particularly its chair) to do whatever it pleases, even if it runs counter to what the general membership and/or the board of directors has dictated. She is even drafting and distributing minutes that contain her version of what happened at the most recent meeting of this particular Special Committee, even though most of it is entirely imaginary (although coincidentally enough, these minutes refelct her own desires exactly). If the bylaws state that the Board is responsible for Special Committees and is the body who in practical terms appointed this person as chair (as there was no motion to that effect ever made at the general membership level...although neither was their such a motion made at the Board level...sigh...), can the Board simply remove this person from the committee? Is this a Chapter XX situation? (Please tell me it isn't.)
  3. Guest

    Adjourning a meeting

    Does the president have the authority to adjourn a meeting if it's viewed that it is not in the best interest to continue?
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