Contributed by George Thorsen
If I had to give an answer to the question, how many hours must a director give to the job, I would say a minimum of ten per month. This is a poor answer because there are many other considerations.
You are expected to attend Workshops and Board Meetings on the second Wednesday of the month. They typically last between sixty and ninety minutes each. This is the most fundamental time commitment.
Next, depending on which committee you are assigned, you meet with your committee once per month and write a monthly report about your activities. Some committees are more time consuming than others. We often give the “lighter” committees such as pool and fireworks to the newer board members which have no monthly meetings. Other committees such as Finance or Lake and Dam have many and complex agenda items, direct a large part of the association’s finance and are critical to the community’s well-being. Recruiting committee members, maintaining committee membership and relevant communication could run quite high in terms of number of hours per month on these committees. So, the amount of time spent on committee work depends partly on the committee to which you are assigned. The president assigns committees but there is negotiation before the appointment at a work shop. Everyone is interested in having a director well matched with his/her committee assignment. While it is encouraged to meet with your committee(s) once per month, actual times and frequency will vary according to circumstances.
There are also ad hoc meetings. These meetings are called by the president to address a specific item. Let’s say for the sake of argument that algae blooms appear spontaneously and the chair of Lake and Dam wants to explain to the board what steps he and his committee want to take to resolve the problem. This also is a spending issue because money is needed to fund treatment perhaps beyond what is budgeted. There are about six of these ad hoc meeting per year but attendance is not obligatory. (Obligatory is relative since directors are unpaid volunteers.)
There are email forums when an issue comes up that requires a decision or discussion to get a general consensus on how to deal with an issue when time is of the essence. These are usually driven by time sensitive circumstances. Essentially, it is an email forum to discuss and get a consensus on how to deal with an issue. Participation is voluntary but most directors do. There is often preliminary reading to do before a meeting. So, foreknowledge is required in order to discuss an item. Many tasks done by directors are not visible to the public.
Informally, because you represent the community, you are expected to be visible, a part of community events, if you have the time and inclination.