- Joe Wise
Transparency Builds Trust for HOAs
Condo and HOA Boards must conduct business transparently. You’ve heard that again and again because it builds trust among homeowners and creates a foundation for more informed decision-making. Today’s digital generation demands transparency because technology has made it an expectation. To reap the rewards of greater transparency in your association, you need to go beyond just conducting open meetings and sharing a few documents. You need to create a community where trust abounds.
Excellent communication among Board members and homeowners facilitates the level of transparency needed to increase trust. Communication is a two-way street. Board members need to convey information to owners and residents. They also need to solicit and provide opportunities for feedback from owners. Technology offers multiple communication channels to facilitate Board communication with homeowners, volunteers, committees, and other groups.
Open and honest leadership practices create transparency that builds a trusting environment. Unless legal issues prevent access, background information and documents on upcoming decisions should be made available to homeowners. Providing background information helps owners understand the “whys” behind decisions, which can increase acceptance and support for the Board’s decisions. Open financial records and meetings also foster a transparent environment for conducting association business.
Choose vendors and professionals that share your philosophy for greater transparency. Open communications and mutual respect extend beyond the community. Vendors and other professionals that provide services to your community should also be committed to sustaining the community’s core values of transparency and trust.
Transparency comes with its own challenges. Open decision-making methods that facilitate transparency usually require more time and resources. In addition, transparency doesn’t guarantee that decisions will be correct. As a Board, you have to guard against not wanting to be bothered with the extra effort. Creating the right environment takes time, and it’s worth the effort.
Successful association Boards learn to balance transparency with moving the community forward because that’s the “sweet spot”. Board members, homeowners and vendors gain respect for each other when there’s a solid foundation of transparency. Start your journey to build greater transparency and trust in your community today.
Wise Property Solutions is a property management company serving East Tennessee with offices in Knoxville, TN and the Tri-Cities, TN-VA. Specializing in Condominium Association Management, Home Owners Association Management, HOA Management and Gated Community Association Management.