Since the board of a building or community association is usually comprised of a collective group of unique individuals with their own perspective and opinions, no two boards are ever the same. However, there are certain overall, universal qualities that can either make or break a board, and these are traits that everyone involved should follow so things run smoothly.
"One of the first things that makes a board successful is having members that come from diverse personal and professional backgrounds," says Rick Fry, owner of RCP Management in Princeton. "A board that's able to bring a broad variety of ideas, thoughts and suggestions to the table for consideration is always best. You don't want a board of five accountants; it's hard to be creative if everyone thinks alike. If you have a teacher, an engineer, a salesman and an accountant, you will get a much broader array of information brought to the board."
People Who Are People
It's important to realize that the people are the key to having a successful board. If a board has members who don't really want to do work and just wanted to be a member for their own purposes, things aren't going to get done.
"What's important are volunteers who are willing to give the time and participate in the procedures of being on a board," says Jane Balmer, general manager of Rossmoor Community Association in Monroe Township. "There's a lot of time and homework involved."
That homework involves knowing what the hot issues are, preparing for the meetings and wanting to make a difference for the building.