Using Parliamentary Procedure to Your Advantage: Building the Member’s Parli Pro Toolbox
The truth is that parliamentary procedure should be a series of fundamental principles that can be applied to many aspects of a meeting and an organization. Many people get caught up in memorizing the different motions and their characteristics but never understand how to use each motion. It is suggested that all members receive a motions chart to keep and use at general membership meetings and have a brief parliamentary procedure session at least on an annual basis, such as before an election and/or during a convention.
Increase Meeting Efficiency with Motion Records
At the same time, the chair (and the secretary and the parliamentarian) should keep track of the motions. When the membership becomes more knowledgeable about parliamentary procedure, they will wish to use more secondary motions — and it can be hard to keep track what is pending and whether any modifications have been adopted in the wording. The presiding officer/parliamentarian, at the very least, should possess a “motion form” that will allow them to write down the motion in the exact wording and make any notes of how the motion is disposed of, amendments, any pending secondary motions, etc. That way, the meeting can run smoothly, with minimal errors and backtracking. The chair can pass the “motion form” to the secretary for him/her to have a copy of the motion with exact wording. This process may seem tedious and useless, but it can make an enormous difference in how a meeting runs. And it only takes around fifteen seconds! It is recommended to “practice” as much as possible with the forms and always have at least 10 copies prepared for a meeting.