Calling all condo directors of Ontario!
Are you a new director unsure of what to expect at an upcoming board meeting? Or already a director and dreading going into meetings feeling unprepared and unsure of what to expect? Well, fear no more!
Stratastic’s helping you make the most out of board meetings by sharing a “cheat sheet” with our top 40 tips on the best practices for conducting meetings and decision-making processes. By following these tips, you'll streamline your decision-making processes, ensure compliance with legal requirements, and foster a respectful and professional environment.
The basics of Board Meetings often follow this timeline: the directors receive the “Meeting Package” from management, have time to review and prepare for the meeting, attend and participate, and tend to any follow-ups following the meeting.
So, what’s a “Meeting Package”? Essentially, it’s the written information/documentation that is given to directors for review and discussion at the upcoming board meeting. It’s usually sent out at least 2 days in advance of the meeting so the board members can have the opportunity to read it and prepare for the meeting.
Most property management companies will send the Meeting Agenda, usually along with (unaudited) financial statements and the minutes from the last meeting. When appropriate, back-up documents will also be included, such as copies of contracts, reports, etc. Together, these are often referred to as the “Meeting Package”.
If you need more time to review documents, the Board may always request that the Meeting Package be sent out even earlier. We can’t stress enough how important it is to have the time to not only review the Meeting Package, but to also understand (and sometimes, ask questions in advance of the meeting).
Now that you know a bit about how board meetings prep works with Meeting Packages, let’s tackle that cheat sheet! Whether you're a seasoned pro or a newbie to the board, these tips will help you navigate meetings with ease and confidence.
Get ready to transform your meetings from boring and inefficient to brilliant and incredible!
P.S. You’re a volunteer, and your time is valuable. Plus, you joined the board to contribute to your condo community, so shouldn’t you make the best of your time and efforts? We can help! Register with Stratastic and we’ll do our part to assist you in effectively and efficiently volunteering as a board member. We can’t wait to have you as a member of our collective condo community!
Board Meeting Cheat Sheet:
Meeting + Decision-Making Best Practices
👓 Before the Meeting:
Familiarize yourself with any relevant legal requirements, such as those outlined in the Ontario Condominium Act.
Review the corporation’s by-laws, rules, and any other governing documents that may impact the agenda items.
Take the time to properly understand the corporation’s financial statements and budget.
Review the agenda and any relevant materials before the meeting.
Seek out advice or input from other experts, such as legal or financial professionals, if necessary.
Make sure you are aware of any conflicts of interest that may arise and take appropriate action.
Consider the potential impact of each decision that may be made during the meeting.
Prepare any questions or concerns you may have about the agenda items, and let property management (or the relevant parties) know what they are in advance (if possible).
Reach out to other board members if you need to clarify any information or gather additional information.
Arrange your schedule in a way that ensures you arrive at the meeting prepared and on time.
🤝 During the Meeting:
Be respectful and professional at all times.
Remain calm and composed, even in the face of disagreements or conflict.
Encourage all board members to participate in the discussion.
Listen carefully to other board members’ viewpoints and opinions; aoid interrupting others or speaking over others.
Follow the agenda and stay focused on the items being discussed.
Use clear and concise language when speaking.
Consider the impact of each decision on the corporation and its residents.
Streamline the decision-making processes by following the appropriate voting procedures and ensure the results are accurately recorded.
Ask questions and seek clarification when necessary.
Schedule the next meeting as soon as possible to ensure that issues are addressed in a timely manner.
🗈 After the Meeting:
Ensure that all decisions made during the meeting are in compliance with the Ontario Condominium Act, the corporation’s by-laws, and other governing documents.
Complete and/or follow up on any action items or decisions made during the meeting.
Address any outstanding issues or concerns as soon as possible.
Follow up with any experts or professionals who provided input or advice during the meeting.
Review the minutes to ensure that they accurately reflect the discussion and decisions made during the meeting.
Keep accurate records of all decisions and actions taken by the board.
Consider the impact of decisions made during the meeting on future board meetings and decisions.
Communicate with other board members and residents as needed to provide updates on decisions or actions taken.
Seek feedback from other board members and residents to improve future meetings and decision-making processes.
If your community shares meeting minutes with residents, make sure to upload them in a timely manner.
😊 Appropriate and Professional Behaviours:
Treat all board members and residents with respect and professionalism.
Be mindful of time and use clear and concise language when communicating with others.
Be aware of the impact of your words and actions on others.
Consider the potential consequences of each decision and action taken by the board, and how this have multiple effects on the corporation and community (now and in the future).
Don’t make decisions based on personal biases or conflicts of interest.
Conduct yourself in a professional manner at all times, both inside and outside of board meetings.
If you must, you can disagree - but don’t be disagreeable! Avoid making personal attacks or engaging in aggressive behaviour.
Listen carefully to others’ viewpoints and opinions, and carefully consider their perspective.
Avoid interrupting others or speaking over others attending the meeting.
Maintain confidentiality when necessary and appropriate.
We hope that these 20 tips on best practices for conducting meetings and decision-making processes have been helpful to you as a condo director in Ontario. By following these tips, you'll be able to conduct meetings with ease, confidence, and professionalism. Remember to prepare thoroughly before the meeting, stay focused during the meeting, and follow up afterwards to ensure that all action items are addressed. And don't forget to maintain a respectful and professional demeanor throughout the entire process. By implementing these practices, you'll be able to make decisions that benefit your corporation and its residents while also making the most out of your meetings.
So go ahead, put these tips into action, and transform your meetings from blah to hurrah!
Tags: decision-making, Ontario, best practices, compliance, professionalism, etiquette, productivity, time management, preparation, execution, collaboration, respect, pro tips, dos and don'ts, handbook, effective, strategies, board member, director, board of directors, property management, condo, property manager.