The Roles of a Company Secretary During Board Meetings

When it comes to the Board meetings, a company secretary in Malaysia plays a very crucial role. She is the link between the shareholders and the company. Many secretaries in Malaysian companies are taking more responsibilities each day. This article focuses on the roles of a secretary before, during, and after a Board meeting.

Before Board Meetings

  • Before any board meeting, the first thing a company secretary must do is to prepare the minutes of the previous meeting. The minutes are then distributed to the board directors for approval during the upcoming meeting.
  • Secondly, the secretary requests copies of the financial report and any other report from committees. The reports are included in the board packet. During this process, he/she can remind the relevant individual about the time, date, and location of the meeting.
  • A few days to the meeting, the company secretary should confirm the availability and reservation of the meeting venue. Also, he/she should ensure that any needed equipment will be available.
  • A few days prior to the meeting, the company secretary should do a review of the preliminary agenda. However, they should do it together with the board chair so as to get directions for any corrections. If possible, it is necessary to review the agenda with guests or presenters, if any. As such, they will understand their role in the meeting.
  • The secretary should also make copies of the prior meeting’s minutes. He/she should then add them to the board packet for distribution. At this moment, the secretary should confirm the attendance of guests and board members.
  • If you are the secretary of an audit company in Malaysia, one of your roles could be to get information on the amounts and of the financial statements.

During the Board Meeting

During a board meeting, the secretary has very critical roles to ensure the success of the meeting:

  • The secretary arrives early before the other members to arrange the venue for the meeting. Other than arranging, the secretary will set and test all audio and visual communication devices to ensure they are ready before the start of the meeting.
  • Once the meeting has started, the secretary takes a record of those who are present. He/she then proceeds to record the minutes of the proceedings of the meeting. The recording of the minutes can be done either by recording or by writing down. However, this is determined by the by-laws of the company.

After the Board Meeting

After the board meeting is over, the secretary will still have to remain behind to carry some tasks. Such tasks include:

  • Ensuring that the chairperson signs the minutes of the previous meeting that have been approved in the meeting.
  • Prepare a draft of what the meeting has discussed and agreed on then go through it together with the chairperson. The draft ensures that the secretary does not end up forgetting what has been discussed in the meeting.
  • The secretary can choose to send a reminder to those members of the board who have agreed to carry out a particular task. A quick reminder eases the work of the secretary. However, it still sends at a later date.

In conclusion, a company secretary in Malaysia plays very crucial roles during board meetings.