Recruiting HOA board members is not just a matter of going out to recruit new board members from whoever volunteers. First, you need to find HOA board members who will fit the job. Then, you need to make sure that when you recruit HOA board members, you also prepare them for the role. Let’s look at a few tips on how to recruit board members, starting from the recruitment message.
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Recruiting HOA Board Members: Deploy These Tips to Maximize Your Success
At times, filling positions on the board can be a challenge. Recruiting HOA board members won’t be easy, because homeowners have their own careers and family to think about. That said, having new ideas and fresh faces joining your board is one of the most crucial parts of a successful homeowners association. Here are a few tips for recruiting HOA board members that have potential.
1. Start With a Good Recruitment Message
Your board member recruitment letter sets the tone for the whole thing. After all, it’s this letter that will potentially set someone towards HOA board membership.
It needs a strong message, so start with what you already know very well. Start with what your board does for the community. Then make sure to emphasize how important the job is.
Also, make sure to give your readers a clue as to what you’re looking for when you’re recruiting HOA board members. Remember, an HOA board is always in need of fresh ideas. Your current board might be missing something. So, make your letter inviting, and ask volunteers if they have ideas in mind for your association.
2. Appeal to the Specific Talents of Your Homeowners
Sometimes, homeowners may not be getting involved in their community because they believe they do not have the right strengths or talents for the job. Your residents may think that most of what you do in the HOA board is to manage finances. After all, many residents may only be reminded of their HOA every time the fees come up.
However, an HOA board does not just need people who are good at accounting. Given this, this is a very important skill for HOA boards to possess. However, the HOA board needs people with all manner of skills.
If you know that your HOA board is in need of a particular skill set, then you may need to go the extra mile for them. Recruiting HOA board members need not be only about your HOA – make it about your homeowners as well. Approach them personally, and acknowledge their specific talents. Then, explain to them why they should get involved.
Find people in your community who are skilled at construction, design, information technology, or gardening and appeal to their specific skill-set to help get them involved.
3. Turn Complaints Into Recruitment Opportunities
When a homeowner politely expresses discontent in the way the association is doing things, that’s a good thing. That’s useful feedback, in many cases.
Make special note of people who are good at turning complaints into constructive suggestions. These constructive complaints are far from being a bad thing. These complaints are actually opportunities for wonderful, passionate residents of the community to get involved.
If you find that a particular homeowner is often politely complaining, try to see if they want to contribute. See if you can encourage them to get involved so that they can have an active hand in improving the community.
Don’t forget to fix the issue they have as well. Personally update them on the progress you’ve made about their complaint. That’s a good opportunity to mention that you’re recruiting HOA members as well.
4. Consider Starting New Recruits in Low-Commitment Positions
Some homeowners are hesitant to jump into the board. Many of them think it is too much responsibility all at once. What if they did not like being a member? One of the easiest ways to encourage and empower from this type of person is to let them handle low-commitment activities or positions. The type that will not eat up too much of their time.
If they do well, that can encourage them to take it to the next level. Committees are a great start for the hesitant resident.
5. Market Your HOA Board to Your Homeowners
It can be very easy to forget that the association board even exists, especially so if they do their job so well that fees are low, maintenance is great and everything runs smoothly.
It is on the shoulders of the board to improve the community, so make sure that homeowners are aware of its active role in bettering the community, and improving their property values as well.
Make sure that everyone knows that there are plenty of opportunities for everyone to get involved. Your HOA website and newsletters are great options to start doing your recruitment drive.
Also, make sure to try the personal approach as well. Try sending letters, personally addressed, every now and then to residents. In these letters, remind them of the work that your board is doing. and add an invitation for them to add their talents to the mix.
6. Be Prepared to Answer Questions Candidly
Homeowners who are approached about trying for a position on the board will have a lot of questions regarding their position. Be prepared to answer questions such as “Do I have enough experience?”, “How much of my time will the position require?” and “What if I’m not very political?” Prepare answers for these questions that both quell fear while being as transparent as you can. With every answer, try to educate the questioner about their role as a potential board member.
7. If Your Bylaws Allow It, Try Appointing the Perfect Candidate
Many HOAs have governing documents that actually allow them to appoint an HOA member to a position. Do you know someone who is the perfect candidate for an HOA board role? In case of emergency, like if a sitting board member has to move, for example, remember this option. Think twice about using this on an unsuspecting HOA resident, though – few people will appreciate the surprise.
If the situation allows for it, try to approach them first with an appointment offer. Make it a short-term one if you can afford it. After all, you and your new HOA board member always have the option to extend it if it works out.
Recruiting HOA Board Members to Build A Strong HOA Board
Recruiting HOA board members is one of the most important tasks that you will undertake. A strong board is the foundation of a solid managed community. So, take the time to educate, encourage, and invite your residents to take part in the development of your HOA.