Tuesday, 22 January 2019
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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

Annual HOA Meeting Celebration

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 05 July 2016 13:20

Holding successful homeowner association meetings takes thought, creativity, advance planning and funding. Too many HOAs scramble to cobble together this important event and, guess what? Few show up and the numbers fall short of the quorum requirements. This doesn't need to happen. Just think what you can accomplish at this important event:

Celebrate Your Success. The annual meeting should be a chance to celebrate successes, hand out recognitions, join members in a common cause and become better acquainted with each other. Use this venue to launch new initiatives or announce good news like awards.

Invest in Success. If your annual meeting budget is bare bones, only those with a bone to pick show up. Since the event only happens once a year, splurge a bit. To pull this off properly, some money should be invested. If you don't have a clubhouse large enough to accommodate all the members, obtain the best and closest alternative. Local libraries, churches and community centers often have large meeting rooms that are reasonably priced or free. And if the budget permits, reserve a room at a banquet facility.

Cast Your Bread Upon the Water. While the business of the meeting might be a bit dry, the wrappings do not need to be. Offer food, beverages, door prizes, comfortable seating and a good sound system if it's a large room. If the budget is modest, host a potluck and award prizes for the best entree, salad and dessert.

Lay Out the Welcome Mat. Make the attendees feel welcome and comfortable. Make sure there is adequate heat or air conditioning. Plan periodic breaks if the meeting is long. It will allow the participants to socialize and refresh their perspective on the business at hand.

Let Them Eat Cake. Serve food and beverages following the meeting so there is a reason to conclude the business meeting and to encourage attendees to stick around. This is a positive way to end the meeting and leave a good taste in their mouths (literally!).

Draw for a Prize. Make returning proxies and attending the meeting fun by including a drawing for, say, a Dinner for Two certificate. Add the names of those that return proxies and also those that actually attend the meeting. That way, those that return their proxy get two chances to win if they show up. Either way, you've encouraged members to help satisfy quorum requirements.

Pump it Up. Cast your annual meeting as the do-not-miss event of the year serves several purposes. You get business done with more members participating and they get to know each other better.

While the business of meetings can be rather somber, the tone need not be. Use these suggestions and celebrate!

For more innovative homeowner association management strategies, subscribe to www.Regenesis.net.

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Richard Thompson

Richard Thompson owns Regenesis, a management consulting company that specializes in condominium and homeowner associations. He is a nationally recognized expert on HOA management issues.

Regenesis publishes The Regenesis Report, a monthly newsletter for HOA boards, developers and managers. To subscribe, go to Regenesis.net. He can be contacted by email at rich@regenesis.net.

www.regenesis.net
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