You may love your building. You may even love your neighbors and the members of your board. But there are few people who can say that they love their monthly board meetings or annual owner or shareholder meetings. That’s because these meetings can drag on for hours, making even the most ardent condo association booster feel like they're an exercise in time-wasting. Still others watch their board and shareholder meetings devolve into pointless shouting matches, complete with name-calling.
Board meetings in every building—small and large, co-op and condo, studio and five bedroom—get out of hand. Issues are heated, lots of money is at stake and there are many of people with tons of different ideas of how their building should be run.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Boards, unit owners and committees can improve the quality and productivity of their meetings very easily with a few simple guidelines.
Like so many other things, meetings are often doomed before they even start, thanks to poor planning (or no planning at all). One of the most common problems that bogs down a board or committee meeting is when a board member arrives and is not prepared for the meeting—or if the management didn’t give the board enough information to make informed decisions or enough time to review the information prior to the meeting. If at all possible, board members should be given all the information about the meeting and everything that has to do with the meeting at the earliest date and time possible. And it’s the board members' obligation to the building to take their position seriously, and to review all documents prior to the meeting.