Association meetings are crucial events that help a Board make important community decisions while also keeping the public in the know. However, sometimes these meetings can last three hours or more if the agenda is long enough and community involvement is free-range.
Just because a meeting is lengthy, doesn’t mean that it is effective. Take some of these tips to heart before this year’s meetings and find out how your association management team can help you keep your meetings short and meaningful
1. Plan Meetings in Advance
Being prepared is the key for a meeting that doesn’t turn into a sleepover. Ask your management team to help your board prepare “board packets” prior to the big meeting. These packets are a great way to keep your directors prepared to speak on specific topics.
Aside from efficiency on behalf of the Board, these packets can also detail the agenda of the meeting. Be wary of agendas that are fully loaded. Our suggestion is to address one large issue per meeting, if possible.
2. Room Setup Matters
Many Association meetings go on for so long because community members feel the urge to speak freely throughout. This could partially be due to the initial setup of your Board’s meeting room. Feng shui also matters in the meeting area.
If your board is lined up and facing the audience, this seems like an automatic opening for participation. There is a set time for audience questions and during the meeting is not one of them. Forming a semicircle where Board members face each other is the best way for the meeting to go as planned; with directors speaking to fellow directors.
3. Speaking Isn’t Always Necessary
On the topic of speaking, if you see that the Board has reached a consensus on a subject, remember that it is okay to not speak. An excellent director will know that speaking up when a motion is about to be voted into passage only elongates the meeting with remarks that usually bring no substance.
4. Have Your Association Management Help You Create Committees
Association management is a service that can help your community thrive, especially when it comes to improving your meeting runtimes. Your management company can help you create committees that will speed up the necessary preparation for important meeting topics. These committees can research and analyze a project from the inside-out before presenting actions to the Board for votes. This is a great way to get the more vocal community members involved with topics that are especially close to their hearts.
5. Adopt Rules and Stick to Them
Meeting rules are the root of keeping a meeting at the one-hour mark. Discuss with your Board what meeting procedures need to be put in place. Ask yourselves:
- What constitutes disruptive behavior
- How long should community members be given to ask questions
- What is our set objective limit
Much like community rules, creating meeting rules and adamantly sticking to them will help keep your plans under control, while also giving the Board and attending community members an idea of what is expected as far as behavior goes at each meeting.
Get Your Association On Track with Specialized Tactics from Goodwin & Company
Your Association Board is the cornerstone of your community. Make sure that your volunteer members have the right team on their side during important 2019 decisions. Association management is a great way to gain help in making decisions and help with some of the background duties that go into keeping a community great.
Reach out to Goodwin & Company today to find out more about our services in your area.