The meeting was sailing along fine. Decisions were being made, action steps were being documented.
Then all of the sudden - when reviewing a decision I thought was made the month before, a voice spoke up "Wait - I don't think we decided that at all." Another voice "No, we did." A second from the table "Yeah, that was decided."
But then another voice said "No, I don't think so."
What went wrong?
Is it because we didn't use Roberts Rules of Order?
Is it because no one read the minutes?
Is it because the last meeting was 3 hours long, and people were tired and didn't catch all the points?
Maybe it's all of the above.
But the bottom line - we left the prior meeting without a concrete understanding - and we lost up to a month on an effort because of it.
What to do?
1. Address the immediate issue. We came up with a plan of next steps needed to move forward.
2. Address the long term issue. Maybe the group needs Roberts Rules. Maybe we need a better tool for communication (we currently use a Facebook group). Or maybe we need to formally adopt Facebook as our communication method. (A simple check will tell us if people are reading the minutes or not).
Bottom line: As the leader of this particular group - I don't have to do all the work, but I have to make sure that communication issues like this are handled.