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Mastering the 3 most important motions in meetings

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in Office Management,Videos

Certified Speaking Professional and co-founder of RobertsRulesMadeSimple.com, Susan Leahy, MA, CSP, gives tips on mastering the three most important motions used in most meetings.

Many boards struggle with learning the basics of Robert’s Rules of Order. Susan encourages you to slow down the learning process and start with what she calls the 3 Most Important Motions. By learning how to make and vote on each of these motions first, you will exponentially improve your board’s effectiveness. These three motions are used the most, and unfortunately, are also the ones that are misused the most.



The 3 Most Important Motions

The Main Motion

Introduces the main item of business


Allow you to add something to or subtract something from the Main Motion

Amend the Amendment

Allows you to add something to or subtract something from the Amendment


In Susan’s Robert’s Rules Made Simple Training Solution, she teaches and introduces you to The 7 Fundamental Motions. But it is Susan’s suggestion that you have everyone on your board master The 3 Most Important Motions first. Learning these three motions is essential to learning Robert’s Rules of Order and getting your board working as a team!

Susan Leahy, MA, CSP, provides live, in-person board development training and powerful online webinars. If you are going to provide Robert’s Rules of Order training to your board members, do not fall into the trap of teaching too much too fast. Slow down the process and start with teaching these three motions. If the members of your board have a collective understanding of these motions, it will make learning the other motions much more simple!

For more information, visit: RobertsRulesMadeSimple.com.

{ 4 comments‰ read them below or add one }

KINGSFORD June 22, 2018 at 1:44 pm

Please, I did not have money to buy your documents. Kindly provide me with free materials on office administration. Thanks.


Ann Homer February 29, 2016 at 1:42 pm

I do not understand why your organization would not have a credentialed parliamentarian — who is a recognized expert in the field of parliamentary procedure — teach this course. The majority of “problems” with the use of parliamentary procedure is that lay people who think they “know” Robert’s Rules of Order — do not “know” Robert’s Rules of Order at all. We are in the 11th Edition of this manual, and the professional parliamentarian (credentialed) often gets called in to testify as an expert witness when what the lay people have taught the organization is wrong! If you want this course taught by an expert, hire an expert — not a public speaker!


Susan Leahy MA CSP March 24, 2016 at 6:04 pm

My experience has often been that those who are “credentialed” become possessive and nit picky regarding insignificant details and many times miss the forest for the trees. We need to inspire more people to want to learn the basics of Robert’s and not nitpick over silly facts like Robert’s is on the 11th Edition not the 10th. So you know this video was shot several years ago but the content is still helpful, relevant and correct. Why not add a comment that inspires people to want to learn Robert’s? Your comment is exactly why people hate Robert’s. You make it sound intimidating and hard. You act like the only people who know anything are those who take a test. Most organizations would not need the help of a “Professional Parliamentarian” if they would just first commit to teach their board members the basics. In my trainings, workshops & webinars I desire to create a supportive and non-intimidating environment where the “lay person” feels safe to learn. I am a passionate teacher of this content and have been for over a decade. Robert’s belongs to all! The basics should be the common property of everyone. The “lay person” is the majority and they need to feel supported and be encouraged to learn the basics. Robert’s Rules of Order is a tool that belongs to us all. Not just those who have taken the test. Most meeting mishaps do not end up having issues that escalate to the court room. But many meetings are not as effective as they could be simply because the people in the meeting didn’t learn the basics. To end, I have been a proud member of NAP (National Association of Parliamentarian) for over 15 years. I had to take a test to get into NAP and I have been studying Robert’s for years. The problem is that those who are “credentialed” tend to create an intimidating learning environment. Stop it….we need EVERYONE not just the “credentialed” to understand the basics of Robert’s Rules of Order.. Happy Meetings!


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