Five Steps to Running More Effective HOA Board Meetings

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A big part of being an association board member is communicating thoughtfully and effectively. Use this checklist to work through important communication plans.
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Being on an HOA, having to run board meetings can be extremely rewarding, but to get there, you face challenging aspects. You have to make sure everyone is on the same page, opinions are heard, and that meetings are productive. Along with this, there comes the potential for huge disagreements among board members on certain actions. Don’t fret! In this article, we share how to keep these meetings running smoothly for every board member involved. 
You’ll find even more tips in our complimentary infographic, “Six Principles for a Better Board Meeting,” which you can download simply by filling out the form below.

1) Follow “parliamentary procedure.”

What this first guideline means is to abide by certain established meeting rules.  With all HOAs, you can find these meeting rules outlined in your bylaws. This is a great way to understand standard protocols, how to provide notice of the meeting, creating an agenda, calling the meeting to order, requiring a quorum, and voting on motions. 

2) Focus on your agenda.

One of the biggest mistakes in a board meeting is to have an agenda set out and to leave the meeting without having touched on any of the topics. It is ultimately a waste of everyone’s time. If you find this occurs frequently, a community association management company can help you stick to the agenda and prevent discussions from going into disarray. 

3) Establish action items and responsibilities.

Leaving any board meeting, board members should know exactly what any next steps are and what action needs to be taken, who needs to take it, and when it needs to be done. The best way to do this is to have a summary section at the end of the meeting, including an open forum. This way, you make sure you haven’t missed or overlooked any important tasks. 

4) Have clear and concise meetings. 

You want to make sure that board meetings cover all important topics as much as possible, but you never want to make a board meeting outstay its welcome. A proper amount of time to give a board meeting is 60 to 90 minutes. The clearest way to make sure that meetings stick to this time limit is by having a clear set of action items about the issues and assigning responsibility for each item. Also, reassure the board members that every issue is being recorded in the minutes.

5) Manage disagreements by remaining neutral.

It’s normal for people to disagree with each other’s opinions, especially if they are board members making decisions on behalf of their community. In fact, these differences are usually an asset for a board. However, if these differences lead to heated emotions, refrain from taking sides. If you are working with a community association management company, your manager should have the proper experience to help defuse or mediate the situation. 
Remember that each person in your HOA benefits from effective board meetings. By following these tips, your board is well on its way toward holding more effective and productive meetings.
Monday August 31, 2020