Run Condos Like a Pro: Understanding the Role of The Board + How Directors Keep Communities Thriving
Do you know the role and responsibilities of a condominium board member in Ontario? If you're a board member or thinking of becoming one, this post is for you. We'll cover everything from the basics of your role and responsibilities to building positive relationships with property management, handling conflict within the board, and tips for effective communication with residents and owners.
Let's get going by gaining an understanding of your role and responsibilities as a condo director, starting with these main points:
As a board member, you play a critical role in the success of your condominium community, which is why your primary responsibility is to act in the best interests of the community.
You’re also responsible to ensure that the corporation and community run smoothly, which fundamentally involves making decisions on everything from budgets and finances to maintenance and repairs - and consistently communicating these matters to all residents.
One of the most important aspects of your role is ensuring that you fulfill your responsibilities in a timely and effective manner. This means attending meetings, staying up-to-date with the latest information and regulations, and working collaboratively with other board members to make informed decisions.
As a board member, you're also responsible for upholding the bylaws and regulations of your condominium community. This includes ensuring that all residents and owners abide by these rules, and taking appropriate action when necessary to enforce them.
Now that we've dealt with the basics, let's dive into the details of your roles and responsibilities as a board member serving your neighbours and homeowners. From how to build and maintain a positive partnership with property management, to conflict management and communications, and all the way to how you can lead from the front - we've got you (and your condo) covered! Let's gooooo!
How to Run Condos Like a Pro: Understanding the Role of the Board
+ How Directors Keep Communities Thriving
🤝 Property Management + Directors: A Positive Partnership
It's important to build a positive relationship with property management, as they’re professional partners who act as agents on your board’s behalf to carry out your instructions within the corporation and its community. When it comes to managing a condominium community, property management plays a crucial role. They're responsible for everything from maintenance and repairs to financial management and administrative tasks. As a board member, it's important to establish and maintain a positive relationship with your property management team.
But why exactly is a positive relationship with property management important? For starters, property management can provide valuable insights and expertise that can help you make informed decisions for your community. They can also help ensure that your community runs smoothly and efficiently, which can ultimately save you time and money in the long run.
To build a positive relationship with property management, it's important to communicate openly and clearly. This means keeping your manager informed of any issues or concerns, and working collaboratively to find solutions. It also means recognizing their expertise and giving them the autonomy to do their job effectively, so be open to their suggestions and avoid micromanaging!
Don’t forget, the role of a director is to direct, while the role of a property manager is to manage. Sound simple in theory, but the reality can get quite messy when boundaries get crossed!
For this reason, it's important to establish clear expectations and boundaries from the outset. This can help avoid any misunderstandings or conflicts down the line. Finally, it's important to treat property management with respect and professionalism at all times, and to recognize the valuable role they play in the success of your community.
🗣️ Que the Conflict: Dealing with Discord Within the Board
Now, let's talk about how to handle conflict within the board.
Conflict is a natural part of any group dynamic, and the board of a condominium community is no exception. However, it's important to handle conflicts in a professional and effective manner to ensure that they don't escalate and negatively impact the community. One of the most important things you can do to handle conflict within the board is to communicate openly and honestly. This means actively listening to other board members' perspectives and concerns, and working collaboratively to find a solution that works for everyone.
In addition, it's important to avoid personal attacks or getting defensive. Remember, everyone on the board should have the best interests of the community at heart, and conflicts often arise due to differences in opinion or approach. By staying focused on the issue at hand and maintaining a professional demeanor, you can help resolve conflicts in a positive and productive way. If you find that conflicts within the board are becoming unmanageable, it may be helpful to bring in a neutral third party, such as a mediator. This can help facilitate communication and find a resolution that works for everyone.
Finally, it's important to keep in mind that conflicts within the board can have a ripple effect on the community as a whole. By handling conflicts in a professional and effective manner, you can help maintain a positive atmosphere and ensure that the community runs smoothly.
As a side note, conflict can also happen with (and between) homeowners; check out these helpful tips that range from prevention to resolution!
🔑 Communication is Key... cliche, yet crystal clear!
Effective communication with residents and owners is key to the success of any condominium community. It helps build trust and transparency, and ensures that everyone is on the same page when it comes to important decisions and issues.
One of the most important aspects of effective communication is active listening. This means taking the time to truly understand residents' and owners' perspectives and concerns, and working collaboratively to find solutions. It also means being transparent and honest about any issues or challenges facing the community.
In addition, it's important to communicate clearly and concisely. This means avoiding jargon or complex language, and using simple and straightforward language that everyone can understand. It also means being responsive and timely in your communication, and keeping residents and owners informed of any updates or changes that may impact them.
👤 Don’t Be a Mystery Member!
Finally, it's important to be approachable and accessible as a board member. This means making yourself available to residents and owners, and being open to feedback and input from the community. By creating an open and transparent communication channel, you can help build trust and foster a positive atmosphere within the community.
Maintaining professionalism and objectivity as a board member is essential to ensuring that the community runs smoothly and that all decisions are made with the best interests of the community in mind.
Here are some 5 quick tips to help you stay objective and professional:
Focus on the facts: When making decisions, it's important to base them on the facts rather than personal opinions or biases. This means taking the time to gather all the relevant information and analyzing it objectively before making a decision.
Avoid conflicts of interest: As a board member, it's important to avoid any conflicts of interest that could compromise your objectivity. This means disclosing any potential conflicts and recusing yourself from any decisions where you have a personal or financial interest.
Maintain confidentiality: Board members often have access to confidential information, such as financial or legal documents. It's important to maintain the confidentiality of this information to avoid any potential conflicts or breaches of trust.
Be respectful: When interacting with residents, owners, and other board members, it's important to maintain a respectful and professional demeanor. This means avoiding personal attacks or confrontational language, and focusing on finding solutions that work for everyone.
Stay informed: Finally, it's important to stay informed about the latest industry trends and best practices, as well as any legal or regulatory changes that may impact the community. This can help you make informed decisions and ensure that the community stays up-to-date and compliant with all relevant laws and regulations.
As you now know, as a board member of a condominium community, you are entrusted with a great responsibility to ensure that the community (not just corporation!) runs smoothly, effectively and in a way that benefits everyone. This can be a challenging task, but it can also be highly rewarding and eye-opening, as you have the opportunity to make a real difference in people's lives and contribute to the growth and success of the condo and residents that you were elected to represent.
And don’t worry, we’ll be by your side every step of the way to encourage you, inform you, and root for your success!
P.S. Help us help you! Register with Stratastic and be the best board member with the most access to information and tools that anyone could have!
Tags: condominium board member, property management, community involvement, communication, conflict resolution, resident relations, leadership, governance, legal compliance, decision-making, transparency, responsibility, teamwork, best practices, trust, accountability, ethics, professionalism, homeowners' association, condo living.