Every co-op and condo building in the city is different, and every board is a unique blend of personalities. Two buildings located next door to each other may take very different approaches to identical daily challenges, and while certain legal aspects of the board’s activities are governed by the Business Corporation Law (BCL), there’s really no official handbook for boards to follow that covers the other stuff. The answers to questions like, “How personally engaged is your board with your shareholders?” for example, or “Does your board have a formal process for cultivating new board members?” are hard to quantify.
That difficulty, combined with the fact that there’s usually more than one way to solve a given building-related problem, can sometimes make it tricky to accurately assess a board’s performance. There are some good places to start, however -- by filling out the inventory below and tallying your board’s score, you may get a better idea of how your board measures up when it comes to things like community relations, organization, leadership, and conflict management. You may identify some opportunities for improvement -- using the inventory results might even put you on the path to a new and improved board of directors!
Using the Inventory
Following is a tried-and-true method:
Schedule a board meeting at which you can spend at least a couple of hours working on the inventory, or make it one part of a longer board retreat.
Distribute a copy of the inventory to each board member to fill our individually so everyone has the opportunity to express their opinion about the strengths and weaknesses of the board.