Necessary for the overall development and advancement of a community, board meetings are where most condo business is conducted. During these meetings, board members review operations, settle disputes, and make plans for the future. Holding effective meetings is the key to board members fulfilling their role within the community; however, they don’t always go as planned due to factors like poor attendance and lack of organization. Read on to learn seven ways to create better, more productive board meetings and deliver on the goals set for these important get-togethers.
1. Increase Attendance with an Established Schedule
To maximize attendance at your board meetings, create a shared calendar and schedule your meetings about one year in advance. Remember to check your governing documents for scheduling guidelines as meeting frequency, attendance, and notification requirements vary by condominiums. Try to stick to your pre-selected dates and times to avoid confusion. Typically, residents should be notified of board meetings seven to 30 days in advance
2. Enhance Meeting Structure with an Agenda
Your board meeting agenda should serve as an outline for meetings and contain a variety of topics, such as action items, committee reports, and updates on business. A well-crafted agenda sets the tone and pace of your meeting, keeps discussions on track and on topic, and ensures high-priority items are addressed. A typical agenda includes:
- Meeting Name
- Date, Time, Location
- Call to Order
- Approval of Last Meeting’s Minutes
- Action Items
- Committee Reports, if applicable
- Old Business
- New Business
3. Advance Accessibility Through Technology
Because adaptability is the key to success in an ever-changing community living landscape, your board should leverage technology to make meetings more efficient and accessible. You may want to consider live-streaming your meetings over a virtual meeting platform so members can attend or revamping your in-person voting requirements by allowing members to vote remotely on a secure, digital platform. Every community has different powers and rules regarding remote or telephonic meetings, so check your governing documents and provincial laws before transitioning to a virtual environment.
4. Boost Efficiency by Prioritizing Preparation
Two of the most common complaints about board meetings are that they take too long and don’t always stay on track. To help meetings run smoothly, all board members should review documents related to the agenda in advance and prepare to respond to any relevant questions and concerns. This preparation will ultimately save your board time and stress and foster a respectful and collaborative space.
5. Improve Records & Protect Your Condominium with Clear and Concise Minutes
Recording board meeting minutes is required. Because they can be used in court and play a crucial role in financial business, preparing and maintaining minutes is a task that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Consider the following when trying to improve your minutes:
- Create a consistent format for the minutes. Have each recorder study the format before beginning their duties.
- Write as concisely and plainly as possible so readers can understand what took place at the meeting.
- Make minutes available to review within days of the meeting and have them formally approved at the next monthly meeting.
6. Strengthen Communication Strategy by Creating a Follow-Up Brief
In the days immediately following the meeting, publish a brief wrap-up of what took place. While you may want to use your minutes as a guide, write your follow-up in a way that residents can understand, providing bullet points and plain language for quick, easy reference. Use your community’s app or website for quick delivery of general information. Regular communication promotes a positive and cooperative spirit and strengthens transparency and trust between the board and residents.