Running better meeting: Roberts Rules 1896

Credit to Christopher Allen & Shannon Appelcline for identifying an interesting historical book, Robert’s Rules of Order, originally written in 1896 and proposing a set of rules for conducting Fair and Orderly Meetings & Conventions. Many of Robert’s Rules would seem to apply to today’s virtual meetings too.

According to General Henry M. Robert:

Since Robert’s Rules of Order first was published in 1896, it’s been the means to orderly, smooth, and fairly conducted meetings. This ninth edition of the famous manual of parliamentary procedure includes everything from the first edition, but all of the information is clarified, cross-referenced, and carefully indexed. “Where there is no law, but every man does what is right in his own eyes, there is the least of real liberty,”

It contains a number of timeless good meeting tips such as :

  • Obtain the floor by being the first to stand when the person speaking has finished
  • Standing while another has the floor is out of order!
  • Debate can not begin until the Chair has stated the motion or resolution and asked “are you ready for the question?”
  • No member can speak twice to the same issue until everyone else wishing to speak has spoken to it once!

It is some 700 pages long but a summary can be found here and it can be purchased from Amazon by clicking here