Necessary for the overall development and advancement of a community, board meetings are where most condominium corporation 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 may vary by community. Try to stick to your pre-selected dates and times to avoid confusion and conflicts.
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
- 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. COVID-19 has resulted in changes to the rules regarding remote or telephonic meetings, so check your governing documents and provincial laws regarding virtual meetings.
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. Drive Participation by Reviewing Homeowner Feedback
Include time to review correspondence received from homeowners—and consider their feedback with an open mind. When people feel acknowledged, they recognize their value as a community member. An inclusive atmosphere at your board meeting not only drives participation, but also encourages involvement long-term within the community.
6. Improve Records & Protect Your Corporation with Clear and Concise Minutes
Recording meeting minutes is an important part of any board meeting. Because they form an official record of the corporation 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.
- Publish minutes in a timely manner. Make minutes available to review within days of the meeting and have them formally approved at the next monthly meeting.
7. 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 readers can understand, providing bullet points and plain language for quick, easy reference. Use your community’s newsletter 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.
See the Results and Keep Looking Forward
When you run inclusive and effective board meetings, you’ll see that interest in the community will continue to grow—along with productivity and general morale. This helps significantly as you plan for your annual general meeting, which is one of the most important meetings of the year. For more information, check out our article, “Annual General Meeting: A Guide”. In it, you’ll discover valuable tips and actionable advice on how to achieve quorum and hold yearly meetings that lead to positive results in your community.