Most associations are going through elections now for the upcoming year. How well do you train and set expectations of your board? And remind current board members of the do’s and don’ts?
We board an airplane. Every time, whether we fly every week or only once a year, we hear the same welcome instructions about loading luggage with wheels out, how to fasten seat belts, and use the emergency oxygen masks. And no smoking in the lavatory.
I travel every week. I hear this message every time. Every flight. Every time. No exceptions.
Forget that it’s a federally regulated industry, and the instructions are helpful and also required.
Travelers know that the “instructions” are coming. And for good reason.
– They help set the expectation for safety.
– They remind us that flying comes with risk and we should be prepared.
– They know a lot of passengers won’t remember the rules from time to time.
I think we could learn a lot by using this preparatory protocol at the start of a board meeting. Meeting rules, meeting etiquette, meeting agreements. This way no time is wasted being frustrated by side conversations, when a board member takes a phone call that rings during a meeting, or a conversation gets seriously off-course.
These issues happen. Do they happen to you?
Every time I present RLP (A Leadership Program) and we review meeting etiquette, I see eyes light up in amazement during the videos about dysfunctional committee and board meetings. Board members live with these kinds of distractions. Emerging leaders cannot believe this can happen.
As you install a new board this fall, remember this: Let’s not over regulate board meetings, but sticking to a few rules are a good idea – out of respect to your volunteer leaders and staff.