Most meetings will have an agenda or some other form of guidelines to help keep everyone on track. Roberts Rules of Order are the most common. To allow everyone a chance to voice their opinion, a motion is presented. A motion is simply an idea on which the other members can vote. To pass a motion is also known as carried or carried out.
Creating a motion
To get an idea in front of a group, one person will ask for the floor. That person will present their idea. The person will usually say, "I would like to make a motion" or " I move that." The chair will then ask for the motion to be approved. For example: Someone could present a motion to plant trees in a neighborhood; "I move that we allot $200 for new trees to be planted in the common area."
Once a motion has been accepted, the chair person will ask for a second. Another member will second the motion, by saying "I second", or something similar. The chair person will then repeat the entire motion for accuracy. A motion with an approval and a second will then move to discussion. Using the tree example, another member would say, " I second that."
The chair will now ask "is there any discussion" or "are there questions." During the discussion, anyone can voice their opinions or concerns regarding the motion. There may be a lot or a little discussion on the motion. When discussion is completed, the chairperson will call a vote. In the tree example, the chair would ask: "is there any discussion on the motion to allot $200 to plant trees in the common area."
During the vote process members will be asked "all in favor say aye" and "all opposed same sign" or similar questions. When the final vote is in, the chair person will announce the results.
If the "ayes" have it the motion is considered carried and is adopted. Once carried the motion can be acted on. If the "nos" have it the motion is lost. In the tree example, the chair would say, " the ayes have it." At this time, the discussion on how to proceed takes place.
Have Robert's Rules of Order handy at all meetings for reference. The rules will help to keep order.