The Intel Alumni Network Board is a twelve person, nonprofit Board of Directors serving approximately 5000 former Intel employees.
The Intel Alumni Network’s mission is to create a thriving community that encourages personal and professional growth through networking and thought leadership.
The Board of Directors meets regularly to decide on the strategic direction of the network, and executing on their initiatives requires attention to detail as well as documentation of progress and decisions.
Challenges Facing Boards of Directors
One challenge that all Boards of Directors face is maintaining continuity between meetings. Because the meetings are held monthly or quarterly, remembering what was discussed from one to the next can prove difficult.
In addition, board members are usually employed at different companies, and sometimes they want to use the meeting tools they already have. If there is no centralization of information, important decisions can get lost in the shuffle.
"Since we don’t have to switch around between different sharing tools and conference lines from meeting to meeting or from one agenda item to the next, each director always knows how to get online for our meetings and we don’t have delays while we wait for people to get onto the right tool." Pat Scatena, Corporate Secretary
Another challenge for boards is keeping focused. Since Board members manage their own committees and are responsible for strategic objectives outside of the Board, they sometimes want to tackle the details of other projects - like running an event or gathering input on a website design - instead of sticking to the topics on the agenda.
Directors sometimes need to coordinate their own committee meetings in addition to the main board meetings. If they aren’t able to easily set up and run them successfully, they might resort to using multiple tools and losing valuable information.
How Lucid Supports Boards
The IAN Board previously used a number of tools, including Google Calendar, freeconferencecall.com, email to send documents, and Google Docs. The board now uses Lucid as a central repository to streamline their scheduling, conferencing, document management and sharing of information.
Because Lucid provides one location for directors to review meetings at any time, they can easily reference past meetings if someone cannot attend or if a new member is elected. Each meeting has it’s own unique “space” for documents, meeting minutes, and attendance records.
The IAN Board uses Lucid’s agenda tool to stay on track and keep conversations to a designated amount of time. Directors know that they need to make decisions expediently and stick to the agenda because everyone can see the same meeting timer.
“Often, our board meetings would veer off topic. Lucid’s agenda builder helps us keep conversations to the time allotted." Monie TenBroeck, Communications Chair
Directors at IAN manage their own committees, and they regularly hold additional meetings. Because Lucid’s interface is straightforward to use, they have managed to set up meetings on their own without much direction.
"The tool is pretty intuitive, so it seems like most directors find it easy to figure out how to use it to set up their own committee meetings separate from the main board meetings." Pat Scatena
Lastly, Lucid has released a number of pre-defined meeting templates over the last six months, and the IAN Board counts this as one of their favorite features. If you regularly hold meetings with the same agenda or people, you can create your own meeting template and save yourself time when you schedule new meetings.
"When it comes to meeting templates, it’s great to learn from others. Why re-invent the wheel?" Monie TenBroeck
The IAN Board faces the same concerns as other boards - the need to maintain continuity between meetings, the loss of information when spread across different tools, and the ability to keep their focus on strategic initiatives.
Lucid’s platform incorporates meeting best practices to address these concerns.
“We immediately felt 'at home' because the platform followed meeting disciplines we all followed while at Intel." Monie TenBroeck
Related Download: Facilitator's Guide
The Facilitator's Guide for Running Board Meetings
This 19-page Facilitator's PDF Guide includes:
- Guidance for managing board meetings in Lucid
- Step-by-Step Instructions
- Overview of 4 board meeting templates
- Resources: websites and books about effective board meetings
Download the PDF version of this case study to share with your team.