The Value to Board Member Training

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The fact that you and your fellow board members have served on multiple boards, does not mean that your panel will not have to be trained. Each board has a different chemistry between the members. Some Boards work well together from the beginning, have members with experience in the procedure, teamwork and decision making, but some do not. Some presidents are stronger than others. Some members have not had a lot of  experience in non-profit industry.

I have heard stories about the conflicts between the members that the escalation of arguments to screams, or that most of them do not know parliamentary procedure, and can easily be intimidated by someone who claims to know everything about it. A president called me to ask how to deal with a bully that speaks to his peers so badly that people leave and the quorum is lost. I suggested that as a first step was a parliamentarian to speak with the Board and sit through a couple of meetings to try to provide guidance. This request led me to seek other remedies for members who do not respect their colleagues or the responsibilities of this position.
All of these situations and more can be greatly assisted by on-board training.
This blog is an excellent resource for reference in training and procedure.  Some of the topics covered are governance, the role of the board of directors and officers, meeting etiquette, conflict resolution, documentation of meetings, conflicts of interest, ethics, review of budgets and financial statements, vendor relations, and much more. These are all important factors that could make or break the effectiveness and efficiency of an Association.
The value of bringing in a professional who has no prior relationship with any of the members is evident. Experienced professionals have seen most of the situations that cause problems and know how to deal with them. Also, having someone with no connection with anyone on the board means that nobody can reasonably claim that the process is biased. I said reasonably claim, and, of course, does not eliminate the possibility that a reasonable claim could be leveled, but an experienced facilitator knows how to deal with it.
It is not only acceptable but essential to get help with a Board that has promise, but not reaching full potential, or a panel which is more or less dysfunctional. The primary responsibility of the joint owners is to govern well and maintain a healthy Association. Refusing to receive help when needed amounts to dereliction of duty, and that is something that no council should allow  to happen on their watch.
Simply use the search box on this site to find common areas that may need to be tweaked in order for the Board to work at maximum efficiency.
This article is provided by Riverside Property Management Inc.