Easy Come, Easy Go? Dealing with Difficult Board Members

We all live and work in co-ops or condos; most of us have lived through some form of havoc wreaked by a board member. This person may be earnest and well intentioned, but projects an argumentative and contentious demeanor that is disruptive. Or he's an absentee board member and delays important decisions. Or even more egregious, he's a board member who focuses on personal gain over the good of the co-op.

There are many ways to identify problematic board members, but it is essential to rectify the situation as soon as possible. A disruptive board member can virtually halt important co-op and condo business, causing chaos, as well as making other board members and shareholders miserable.

Nice Neighbor, Bad Board Member

Before addressing the problem, however, let us look at a typical member of a cooperative corporation's board of directors. In most buildings, there are seven people, neighbors, who dedicate hours of their time to help maintain and improve their homes and investments. These board members are not, generally, real estate or building professionals, but volunteers who take on tremendous responsibilities for a wide range of critical decisions that encompass everything from painting lobbies to purchasing boilers and, of course, hiring managing agents.

Although the shareholders vote board members in, the board itself determines who takes on the role of president, secretary, treasurer, etc. In other words, the officer designations are not decided by a vote of shares, but by the group itself. It is true that an effective board member can still be an ineffective leader.

Read More...

Related Articles

Called to Serve

Volunteers for Board Service Often in Short Supply

New York City Buildings Say Goodbye to No. 6 Heating Oil

100 Percent Phaseout Complete

Community Involvement

Looking Beyond Your Own Doorstep

 

7 Comments

  • How can I find a lawyer to start a lawsuit against Condo Association or Board Members if majority of best lawyer is engaged with them (client). Can I start lawsuit by myself befor contact a lawyer?
  • president of the board of directors is using our attorney to prepare her personal documents.
  • We the current majority of the board removed the past president in June. He has now filed a claim against 4 female board members. He has made fun of my being a Christian, he has called me stupid, he has called me Horrible, he has said I have a grade school mentality (I graduated Summa Cum Laude) from Nursing school). He was removed for various reasons, but mostly for his unilateral work. He viewed us as subordinates, and we were on a need to know basis. We are haveing a cash-flow problem, and have for the past few years, under his Presidency. He spent in excess of 105,00.00 for renovations, that were not board-approved, or budgeted. The list goes on and on. He and 2 other members of the board undermine everything we others are working for. I want to counter-sue him. Can you tell me how to get started? Thank you
  • What about when the disruptive is the President????
  • What if the disruptive is the President?
  • I believe my condo board may try to vote off a member of the board just before the annual election. She is not up for relection and does not always agree with the other board members for valid reasons. This may happen because they are afraid of holding a less than majority position after our upcoming election; whic is Feb. 3.
  • thabang andries jordan on Friday, September 25, 2015 4:26 PM
    our chairperson and one tresure they eat our money.so now they work for another coop.they dont want to resign them self?what can we do?