Five Steps for More Effective Condo Board Meetings
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One of the most challenging aspects of being on the board of your condo corporation can be running board meetings. It's not always easy to keep everyone tuned in to the business at hand. Also, you have to manage the inevitable disagreements among board members. How do you keep these meetings running smoothly?
Being on the board has many challenges. One of the most challenging areas, in particular, is running board meetings. Like any meeting, board meetings need structure. This structure often comes in the form of an agenda. Along with this, properly managing disagreements between board members is another hurdle. How do you keep these meetings running smoothly?
We've got you covered! In this article, we have five guidelines for making your meetings more productive.
1) Follow "parliamentary procedure."
To follow parliamentary procedure means to abide by specific established rules. Frequently with condo corporations, these procedures are outlined in your bylaws. They include standard protocols, such as providing notice of the meeting, creating an agenda, calling the meeting to order, requiring a quorum, and voting on motions. Keeping in mind these procedures will get your meetings off to a great start.
2) Focus on your agenda.
An agenda is a list of topics that you and your board will be going over throughout the board meeting. It helps organize the meeting's flow and helps to keep the most important discussions in mind. Writing a board meeting agenda is one thing, but sticking to it and having it come to fruition is another challenge. If you are working with a property management company, you will want your property manager to be present to help you redirect any discussions that go off course.
3) Establish action items and responsibilities.
After a meeting is complete, board members should know exactly what their next steps are, when it needs to be done, and any other important information. Reiterating the list of actions at the end of your meeting helps ensure that nothing has been overlooked.
4) Beware of time drains.
Usually, board meetings are 60 to 90 minutes long. This time allotment allows for proper discussions of every agenda item. However, sometimes board members can become overly passionate about a topic that they will want to continue discussing it, with no end in sight. This elongation not only disrupts the meeting, but it prevents enriching conversations about other agenda topics. Avoid this issue by creating a list of action items and assigning responsibility for each item. Reassure the member that the issue is being recorded in the minutes.
5) Manage disagreements by remaining neutral.
Board members will have differing opinions - that is unpreventable. However, you can see this as a positive sign for the board, as healthy discussions mean involvement and a willingness for change. However, if these discussions turn into heated emotions, avoid taking sides. If you are working with a property management company, your property manager can help with finding ways to help defuse the situation.
Keep in mind that everyone on your board will benefit from a smooth, productive meeting. Find out whether your property management company has what it takes to provide great service by downloading our capable manager guide.