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PROCEDURES IN MEETINGS

A. MEETING TERMINOLOGIES
adjourn - to hold a meeting over until a later date.
agenda - literally means things to be done, but commonly used to describe the agenda paper
which, lists the items of business to be discussed at a meeting. It lists items in the order in which
they are to be taken.
minutes - the written record of the business transacted at the meeting; resolution minutes record
only decisions reached, while narrative minutes provide a record of the decision making process.
motion - a proposal put forward for discussion and decision at a meeting.
quorum - the minimum number of people entitled to be present at a meeting, which the
regulations require to be present so that the business of the meeting may be transacted validly.
resolution - although the word motion and resolution are often used indiscriminately,
resolution is a proposal which has been accepted by the meeting.
amendments - a proposal to alter a motion which has been submitted to a meeting e.g. by
adding, inserting or deleting of the original words.
B. INTRODUCTION TO MEETINGS
A meeting is usually defined as the coming together of at least two people for any lawful
purpose. Meeting can vary in size and have many purposes.
I. THE PURPOSES OF A MEETING
1)
2)
3)
4)
5)
6)
7)

To make decisions, within their sphere of authority


To pass off decision and instruction
To give an obtain information
To bring together knowledge and experience to solve a problem
To brainstorm - attempts to produce a wide range of ideas
To air grievances
To develop co-operation and influence attitudes

II. ADVANTAGES OF HOLDING MEETINGS


1) More knowledge and experience can be brought together and more information made
available
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2) Discussion is often useful - ideas are developed or new solutions proposed


3) The flow of communication downward and upward is improved and horizontal
communication helped by regular meetings of Line Managers
4) Management is informed of the feelings and reactions of their staffs
III. TYPES OF MEETINGS
1) Informal meeting - These may be called at short notice either by means of a note or simply
by word of mouth. They are often called to discuss matters, which arises suddenly. These
meetings do not usually have an agenda and it is not usual to keep a record of what happens
at the meeting. E.g. - Group discussions, brainstorming meetings.
2) Formal meeting - These meetings are usually held after the persons entitled to attend have
been notified in writing sometime before the meeting. The notice is usually followed by an
agenda. They are governed by strict rules and conventions laid down in the organizations
formal constitution. Strict rules concern with announcement, planning, conducts recording of
proceedings. A formal form of documentation.
a) a chair person guides the proceeding of the meeting and maintains order
b) the sequence of business, at least of speeches
c) the purpose of the meeting is achieved by reaching same decision at the end of the
discussion
C. THE MAIN MEMBERS OF THE MEETING
The Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, and other committee members.
D. REQUISITES OF A VALID MEETING
1) A meeting must be properly convened (notice)
2) It must be properly constituted
3) It must be properly conducted

Convened
a) Notice to be sent to every person entitled to attend the meeting
b) Adequate notice drawn a week ahead
c) Notice to be clear and leading- contains all important details
Constituted
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a) The Chairmans appointment must be valid


b) There must be a quorum to start a meeting
c) Quorum to maintain a meeting
Conducted
a) Chairman must ensure the business dealt is within the scope of meeting
b) The Chairman must allow the proposal of a legitimate and relevant amendment
E. ROLE OF THE CHAIRMAN - The qualities
The Chairman is an extremely important person. The success of the meeting depends upon his
capabilities.
a) He needs to have strength of character, not dogmatic and impressing his views on the
meeting
b) Abilities to express himself fluently without making speeches
c) Tactful, patient, and sound knowledge of business
d) Able to maintain control and irrelevant interruptions. Insist all address the chair but not bar
useful exchange of views
e) Firm when ruling on points of order (conduct and procedure), i.e. on incorrect procedure ,
irrelevancy, un-parliamentary languages, transgression of the rules of the company
f) Must demand respect and must respect the opinion of others
g) Impartial judgement
F. THE DUTIES OF THE CHAIRMAN
a)
b)
c)
d)
e)
f)
g)

Ensuring his own appointment and of other officers are in accordance with the rules
Making certain the meeting is properly convened, correctly constituted and quorum is present
Helping the secretary to prepare the Agenda
Maintaining order and ensuring the meeting conducted correctly
Taking business items in a correct order
Preventing irrelevant discussion and allowing adequate opportunity for opinions
Ascertaining sense of the meeting for discussion, putting motions and amendments in a
proper order
h) Making record of proceedings
i) Communicating decisions to whom will be affected by them
G. ROLE OF THE SECRETARY
The role of a secretary plays a very important role for the smooth and efficient working of the
society. All the routine office and paper work is dealt by the Secretary.
a) Dealing with all correspondences
b) Sending out notices to all the members of the meeting
c) Preparing agenda with the Chairperson and sending it to all the members
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d) Duplicating copies of the previous minutes to send out to members or hand out before the
meeting starts
e) Obtaining all the necessary documents or reports statement from the absent members
f) Making sure these materials are ready:
- Writing paper and instruments
- Spare copies of agenda
- Minutes of last meeting as well as previous meetings
- All relevant documents, for example - reports, figures, etc.,
- Attendance register
- Any books or sources of Reference
- Seeing the Chairman is equipped with the last minute matters and given his agenda and
relevant information
- Making a record of those attending the meeting
H. ROLE OF COMMITTEE MEMBER
1)
2)
3)
4)
5)
6)
7)

Required to attend all meetings


Should actively participate in all the deliberations of a meeting
Make positive contribution (suggestion, etc) to help in the decision
Act as a responsible person i.e. genuinely interested in the activities
Address the Chairman directly when participating in the discussion
Be polite and conduct himself properly in speech and manners
Accept with good grace majority decision made against his wishes and put it into action

I. DOCUMENTS OF A FORMAL MEETING


1) Notice
2) Agenda
3) Minutes

For example:
a) the inaugural General Meeting
b)
the Annual General Meeting - held once a year to elect officials of the committee,
to receive reports and to give members an opportunity to speak
c) the Committee Meeting - discusses day to day affairs etc
I. NOTICE OF A MEETING

A notice is any form of communication used to summon, or call, all the persons who are entitled
to attend the meeting. The function of the notice is to inform or remind members of the date,
time, and place of the meeting.
For writing notice:
a)
b)
c)
d)
e)
f)

the name of the society or group


the heading Notice of the Meeting
the day, date and time of the meeting
the venue it is held
the signature, name and designation of the person issuing the notice, (a secretary)
the date of issue of the notice

Example:
THE MULTIMEDIA UNIVERSITY CULTURAL CLUB
Notice of the Meeting
The Second Executive Committee Meeting of the Multimedia University Cultural Club will be
held on Tuesday, 13 October 2004 at 1500hrs in the Lecture Theatre, FOSEE building,
Multimedia University, Malacca.
Shamsidar
(Secretary)
5 October 2004
II. AGENDA FOR A MEETING
The Chairman usually decides what items are to be included in the agenda and the secretary
prepares copies of it to be sent to each member a week before the meeting.
Agenda gives a meeting direction and purpose in an orderly manner and ensures all important
items /issues are dealt with.
Preparation
To ensure no relevant item is left out. The Chairman or secretary consults other officials who
wish to include some more business in the agenda.
The Secretary refers to the minutes of the last meeting so it acts as a reminder, annual, halfyearly or quarterly recurring items. The Secretary usually maintains a file of all important
documents (reports, correspondence) which require attention in the next meeting.
The duration of the time must be considered while preparing an agenda.
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Example of an Agenda:
MULTIMEDIA UNIVERSITY CULTURAL CLUB
AGENDA
1) Chairmans address
2) Apologies for absence
3) Minutes of the last meeting
4) Matters arising out of the minutes
5) Correspondence
6) Reports
7) Special business
8) Any other Business
9) Date, time, and place of next meeting
10) Close
The Chairmans Agenda
The Chairman has the leading role in the meeting and thus needs to be particularly well
informed if he is to lead members carefully and speedily through the business. Therefore, the
secretary should brief the Chairman additional information to that provided for others. It is usual
to set out his agenda in a way, which distinguishes the information given to him only, and leaves
a space for his own notes.
The Chairman will need his agenda in advance of the meeting, so that he may plan ahead,
but it should be compiled as late so as to include last minute information. The secretary should
have his copy to help in taking notes for the minutes.
E.g.: A Chairmans Agenda
Traders Limited
Liaison Committee meeting to be held on Friday, 13th Oct, at 1400 hrs in Committee Room A.
CHAIRMANS AGENDA

NOTES
1

1) Apologies for absence


J Brown will be away at a conference

2) Minutes of the last meeting


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Held on 12th March 2004


Copy attached.
No errors pointed out: to be confirmed

3) Matters Arising

4) Parish Contract
The meeting must agree on a completion date. Sales Manager
will press for end of the month. Maintenance and Production
Managers will propose end of July.

5) Proposed extension
Decision to be made. Manager prefers Area A but this will
cause Maintenance and Production problem.
Committee to consider and report?
Possible ad-hoc (Area A/Area B on attached Plan,
Agenda Paper 1)
6) Improving Company Communication
This is the proposal discussed with the Personnel Manager who
will propose regular briefing/ meeting chaired by a Director
and attended by Rep., from each dept should be considered

7) Any Other Business


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8) Date of next meeting


Suggest Friday 4th Nov 2004

____________(Date)
____________(Ref)

III. THE MINUTES OF A MEETING


Minutes provide grounds for taking action and record in for further perusal.
The secretary must summarize the proceedings in a clear and in concise form. It begins with the
statement of the day, date, time and place of the meeting, [Leading] following which is a list of
those present at the meeting, beginning with the Chairman, Secretary and the members present
listed alphabetically.
Then finally, the record of the meeting should follow the same order of the Agenda.
Example:
Minutes of the second Executive Committee Meeting of the Multimedia University Cultural Club
on Tuesday 1st Nov 2004 at 1800hrs in the Lecture Theatre, Multimedia University, Malacca.

Next, list of names of those who were present in the following order:
Name

Position

1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________

Chairman
Vice-Chairman
Secretary
Committee Member
Committee Member
Committee Member

Item Number 1

Chairmans Address

The introductory remarks made by the Chairman i.e.:


The Chairman called the meeting to order at 6.10p.m. and welcomed all the members.
Item Number 2Apologies for Absence

If all the members are present:


There were no apologies for absence.
When absent:
Apologies for absence were received from Mr. Andrew Chan and Ms. Siti Noor Jahan.
Item Number 3

Minutes of last Meeting

The Committee considers the minutes of previous meeting. In case of no errors or omissions, the
Chairman signs the minutes to confirm that they are accurate:
"The minutes of the last meeting were accepted as an accurate record and then signed by the
Chairman".
In case of an error, amendments are made on Chairmans advice:
"The price of the costume listed at RM100 was incorrect and was changed to RM200. The
minutes were then approved by the Chairman and signed as accurate.
Item Number 4

Matters arising out of the Minutes

In case of nothing:
There are no matters arising.
In case of developments and follow up action with regard to the business dealt earlier, members
may provide information:
Mr. Chan Mui informed that the stage was installed and ready for use in the auditorium.
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Item Number 5

Correspondence

The main contents of correspondence if any:


A letter of thanks was received from the Headmaster of International School. The Headmaster
conveyed appreciation for the assistance rendered by the Cultural Club during the recent
cultural festival of the School.
Item Number 6

Reports - Brief record and major content

"Mr. Hussain, Chairman of the Cultural Youth sub-committee, reported that at their second
committee meeting held recently, it was decided that inter-college Cultural Competition would
be held from next month. He reported that the Director of FOSEE had kindly agreed to present
RM1000 each to the winning team."
Item Number 7
Any Other Business
Main business discussed and proposals and motions put forward:
"Mr. Siva proposed that the committee should find ways and means to raise funds for the
upcoming charity drive organised by the Cultural Club next month."
Item Number 8
Date and time of the next meeting
"It was decided that the next meeting will be held on 15th December 2004 at 1500hrs in the
Students Meeting Room."
Item Number 9

Close

"The Chairman thanked all the members for their participation and contribution and ended the
meeting at 1900hrs."
Prepared by,

Approved by,

_________________

__________________

Secretary
Date:
Ref:

Chairperson
Date: