Undoubtedly, running meetings is one of the most challenging parts of being on your strata’s council. Members sometimes get off track. Disagreements sometimes turn into arguments. Short discussions sometimes become long-winded monologues. Is there anything you can do to make your council meetings more effective? 
 
Yes, there is! Read our five recommendations for running more productive meetings. And for additional tips, download our complimentary infographic, “Six Principles for a Better Council Meeting.” Just fill out the form below. 
 

1) Let “parliamentary procedure” rule. 
Following “parliamentary procedure” means that you have a formal process, based on a set of established rules, for running your council meetings. Your strata’s bylaws will provide some guidance for this by specifying certain requirements, such as how and when to provide meeting notices, the process for voting on motions and what constitutes a quorum.  
 

2) Adhere to your agenda. 
An agenda will help keep your discussions focused on your objectives. If you are working with a strata management company, have your strata manager attend your meetings, too. They can help refocus discussions and keep your meetings on track. 
 

3) Create action items, and determine responsibilities. 
Council meetings should result in specific action items being assigned to individuals members. Run through the list of items, along with the names of responsible parties, at the end of your meeting so that no one overlooks important tasks.  
 

4) Put a stop to time sappers. 
No one enjoys long, drawn-out meetings. Council meetings generally should not last much more than 60 – 90 minutes tops. However, it’s not unusual for council members who feel especially passionate about a topic to stay on it a bit too long. If you notice that a member is spending too much time on one topic, come up with relevant action items and assignments that will keep the topic alive in a productive way. Remind the member that the issue will also be recorded in the minutes.  
 

5) Stay neutral if disagreements arise. 
Having a difference of opinion on a strata council is a good thing, unless those differences result in heated arguments. Look for aspects on which the two sides can agree, but avoid taking sides. If your strata is working with a management company, ask your strata manager to step in to reduce tensions. Remember that they have experienced many different situations assisting strata corporations with their council meetings. 
  

Holding effective meetings is not only good for your council, but it’s also good for your entire strata. Follow these recommendations, and you’ll have more productive council meetings in no time!  

Wednesday April 11, 2018