If you are a board or committee member for your homeowners association, you are expected to wear two hats at the board meeting… that of a “homeowner” and the distinctively separate hat of a “board member”. Very often those who serve on their HOA board are challenged by conflicts of interest that stem from representing what is best for the majority of the community vs. your own agenda (a.k.a., what is best for you).
As a board member, you are charged with keeping an objective viewpoint and to represent the collective community. Truly, serving on your board isn’t much different than serving in political office. You have been elected to serve your constituents… the community. So, if you accept a position of leadership, you may have to put your personal views on the back burner, unless you find that the majority of the homeowners share your viewpoint.
When consulting with a newly appointed board, we noticed that one member continuously inquired as to when we would be addressing a specific homeowner’s choice of shrubs in landscaping. She brought up the shrubbery at every meeting, often more than once. It was clear that she wanted the board to force it’s removal. The community was struggling with many more serious issues, so this preoccupation with landscaping struck me as trivial. Further, the covenants were silent in regard to what types of shrubbery could be added to the landscape. Board members quickly picked up on this as a conflict of interest and refused to acknowledge her comments. After three months on the board she resigned. Clearly this was not someone who was there for all the right reasons.
It is difficult to keep our personal feelings, likes and dislikes out of the equation when making board decisions; but it is necessary. If you cannot view a situation from a broader perspective and cannot put your personal agenda aside, then a position on your HOA board will likely not end well for you or the community.Share