Valued Board Members at the End of Their Rope? Try These Fixes
In a new article we show you 10 tips to turn frowns upside down when it comes to board members who've done yeoman's work but who are ready to exit stage right. In this week's tip we offer 3 of those 10 ways to prevent HOA board member burnout.
1. Remember that prevention is the cure. "To prevent board burnout, establish a protocol for the board that'll prevent it from happening," says Debra A. Warren, vice president of client relations at the Dallas–based Associa®, a community association management company with offices throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico. "Make sure board members understand their role is to set policy and as much as they can—and I know it's difficult with smaller associations—avoid micromanaging and volunteering to do the micro–operations themselves. Try to resist that temptation so you can focus on the big–picture issues and spend your time where it's most important for the association."
2. Train your replacement from day one. "I tell board members that from the time they get on the board, they should start grooming their successor," says Harry Styron, a community association attorney at Styron & Shilling in Branson, Mo. "That's best done by finding interested owners and asking them to serve on committees that make reports to the board, whether those are standing or ad hoc committees. The idea is to find people who can become board members later and introduce them to the board's responsibilities and how the board needs information assembled, essentially grooming them for leadership.
3. Recognize you're one of many. "I give a talk to new board members, so I have the opportunity to warn them of burnout and the problems of trying to act alone even though it's sometimes hard to find volunteers," says Styron. "Board members shouldn't identify too closely with their board role and forget that they're members of a board. They don't personally have any special board power and should remember that board responsibilities are always shared."
Learn all 10 ways to prevent HOA board member burnout in our new article.