Educating HOA directors to be representatives of the members

guest blog by George Staropoli

Florida attorney and CAI member Donna Berger posted the following question, “Why do you need to listen to the dissenting voices in your community?”, on the Becker & Poliakoff Community Association Law blog. (http://www.communityassociationlawblog.com/2016/05/why-you-need-to-listen-to-dissenting.html).

She wrote, in part, “One of the first things leadership training establishes is that discordant voices in an organization can be extremely beneficial to growth and the ultimate success of that organization.” I commented:

“Good advice.

“I see a reason for the hostile response by many board members, beyond rude and angry behavior of some members, is that HOA directors are not schooled in the requirements to be a representative of the ‘people.’

“Unlike a business, governing representatives must be educated to accept the reality that dissent is part of the job and they must be able to respond in a positive manner. That they are to carry member issues and concerns to the entire board for resolution.

“If they cannot, then the job is not theirs. If the job is beyond their pay grade, they should also not serve.

“So, why is there a failure to educate themselves on what it means to be a representative of the people?”

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