Board committees focus on specific functions, programs or projects as assigned by the greater board. Their purpose is to provide expertise and acute attention to areas of assignment.
When leading a committee, diverse backgrounds, opinions and strengths can be both positive attributes and areas of management concern. Learn how to leverage effective communication to position the committee for success.
1. Set Expectations and Goals
In initial committee meetings, ensure all members are well informed before the real work begins. Consider holding an open discussion centered on expectations and potential outcomes.
- What is the committee’s purpose?
- Are committee members voluntary, elected or nominated?
- Is everyone aware of the initiative’s end goal?
- Are responsibilities clearly defined?
Setting expectations and goals gets committee members on the same page and working together.
2. Define Roles
For committee success, members must have clearly defined roles. Inform each member of what they are responsible for, how their success will be measured and what projects or initiatives they own. Clearly defined roles create the hierarchy necessary for strong communication and collaboration.
3. Establish Communication Processes
To ensure activities progress, establish an agreed-upon communication process with committee members.
Discuss ideal communication methods including how documents will be sent, where files will be organized, who should be involved in the communication of various scenarios and what the communication chain of command is.
4. Leverage Communication Technology
Technology, such as a board portal, can promote better communication by streamlining processes, enabling more fluid meetings and facilitating discussion.
When considering a board portal, seek features that correlate with your organization’s management and communication goals. Consider:
- Shared meeting and event calendars
- Task assignment capabilities
- Member expectation and performance tracking
- Ability to create ballots and polls
- Automated email communications
- Ability to post meeting minutes and notes
Board portals also offer centralized documentation and file storage, perfect for committees of all sizes to keep organized and on task.
How does your committee promote effective communication?
For more ways to promote effective communication among your board, download our ebook “Maximizing Board Engagement and Effectiveness.”
Image Source: Sarah Joy via Flickr