While serving on your homeowners’ association’s (HOA’s) board of directors can be a big responsibility, it’s also a great opportunity to strengthen your professional abilities and advance your teamworking skills. As a leader in the community, you’re tasked with solving complex issues, managing day-to-day operations, and making important decisions in the best interest of your HOA. However, it’s not a one-person job, and it’s the responsibility of the entire board to support, trust, and communicate with one another to lead successfully. Every board can benefit from improved teamwork. Read on to learn how your HOA board can work better together.
Why is Teamwork Important for an HOA Board of Directors?
Comprised of elected volunteers who live in the community, the HOA board is responsible for ensuring the association runs smoothly. The board has a significant obligation and can determine the community’s success or failure. Creating and enforcing guidelines, overseeing finances, and maintaining shared spaces demand effort and cooperation from all board members.
When HOA leaders work well together, it can boost morale, positivity, and productivity, making the job easier and more enjoyable. The ability to cooperate and make decisions effectively also demonstrates good stewardship to the community. Here are six ways your HOA board can improve teamwork.
1. Establish clear roles and responsibilities.
As a board member, it’s vital to understand what your role entails and how your contributions fit into the overall objective of the board. When every HOA officer stays on top of their individual responsibilities, it helps simplify operations and keep the board on track. Creating rules and expectations for board members will also hold each person accountable for completing their tasks, which can prevent internal conflicts that derail teamwork.
2. Set common goals that everyone can support.
Setting shared goals that all board members can work towards is an excellent way to foster teamwork. When you’re on the same page trying to accomplish a common goal, the team often develops a sense of unity and support for one another rather than feeling isolated in their roles.
Although board members have specific duties, you can combine your skills to achieve a community goal. For example, you might set a shared goal to increase resident participation at your annual meeting. One board member might work to secure refreshments for the event, the other to send out communications to residents, and another to build a better agenda. Here are some other goals your board might consider accomplishing together:
- Prepare an annual budget
- Generate a preventative maintenance plan
- Establish a communications policy
- Organize a formal complaint process for homeowners
- Upgrade technology
3. Plan team-building activities.
Team-building exercises strengthen relationships by encouraging cooperation, trust, and communication. Team members ideally create a bond by working together to solve a problem in a fun environment. The benefits of team-building activities include developing friendships, promoting team pride, and making shared memories.
A team-building activity can form a solid foundation that sets the tone for future collaboration. Just be sure to keep it quick, fun, within budget, and appropriate for your group. Activity ideas include:
- Taking a personality test, like the Myers-Briggs, and discussing the results
- Hosting a scavenger hunt around the community
- Going on a group outing to an escape room
- Holding a lunch and learn for a board member to demonstrate a unique skill
- Volunteering for a community service project
4. Use technology to streamline duties and stay connected.
In today’s world, you can do more with the touch of a button. HOA technology allows board members to streamline communication, efficiently assign tasks, and improve transparency. For example, with some platforms, board members can send the same message to all residents instantly or even detail to-dos.
Leveraging technology solutions also means board members can conveniently access governing documents, meeting minutes or agendas, and other communication records quickly. That way, your team stays on top of community priorities, budgets, and resident updates. These tools can help your board be more productive, enhancing the team’s drive and motivation.
5. Hire a professional community management company.
It can be easy for board members to get bogged down by daily tasks and projects. When you hire an HOA management company, you can put more effort behind big-picture ideas to boost property values and the quality of life in the community.
An experienced HOA management company assists with HOA duties to ease the workload and minimize stress. A management company might oversee operational responsibilities, like dispute resolution, meeting preparation, maintenance, billing, and more, offering support where you need it most. With a lighter load, the board is happier and healthier.
6. Show gratitude to fellow board members.
Showing thanks to HOA board members can go a long way in building camaraderie and morale. If a colleague puts in a lot of time towards a certain task or accomplishes a goal, don’t forget to highlight those achievements and share how grateful you are for their contributions. Not only will this let fellow board members know they’re appreciated, but it’ll also encourage them to continue their work. Some ideas to show thanks to your board include:
- Bringing coffee or special treats to HOA board meetings
- Giving a personalized gift or note to say thank you
- Sharing significant achievements during HOA meetings
Effective Internal Conflict Resolution for a Successful HOA Board
While HOA leaders have the common goal of improving community life, miscommunications or strong personalities can lead to disagreements that inhibit teamwork. Being able to quickly and effectively resolve conflicts means your team can stay productive and connected.
If you don’t already have an internal conflict resolution process in place, download our FREE ebook, “6 Conflict Resolution Best Practices for HOA Board Members,” for tips on reaching speedy and successful resolutions in your community.