Business Session

Why a Business Session?

There are at least two very important reasons for the Business Session of a Toastmasters meeting.

  1. The Business Session is an occasion for dealing with administrative matters related to the proper functioning of the club.
  2. The Business Session provides members with opportunities to learn and practice rules of
    parliamentary procedure that they could find useful in other organizations to which they may belong.

Guidelines for a Good Business Session

  1. Keep it short. Members are primarily interested in presenting manual speeches and developing impromptu speaking skills through participating in Table Topics. So, if ten minutes have been allotted for the Business Session, move on to the Education Session as soon as the ten minutes are up, or sooner.
  2. The meeting should approve an Agenda for the Business Session and stick to it within the allotted time.
  3. The Chairperson should be firm, fair and familiar with
    the basic rules of parliamentary procedure. In addition, a copy of Roberts Rules of Order should be available at meetings for quick reference.
  4. The Secretary should be ready to respond promptly to the Chairpersons questions about a quorum.
  5. The minutes of previous meetings should always be available and the Secretary should be prepared to read the minutes promptly and professionally. Alternatively, the minutes may be distributed prior to the meeting and approved
    based on that distribution.
  6. Usually, matters that have previously been agreed upon by the Executive Committee of the club can be quickly ratified during the Business Session.
  7. Motions, in writing, should be tabled and copies circulated among members, at least one week prior to the meeting at which they will be debated.
  8. The Secretary should be prepared to write down and read
    back any motion that may be proposed spontaneously.
  9. All members should collaborate with the Chairperson in
    the expeditious handling of essential business; and they should avoid bogging down the meeting with trivial matters or poorly prepared propositions.
  10. It is not necessary to conduct a full Business Session every week. A motion to suspend the Business Session may be proposed by the Secretary.