Beating Condo Board Burnout

Even the best and brightest condo board members can feel the exhaustion from time to time. No matter your position, the demands placed on condo boards can be taxing. The result is burnt-out board members with individuals phoning it in and governing bodies that become stagnant, tired, and ineffective. 


Because board burnout can sometimes be a fact of life when it comes to condo corporations doesn’t mean you have just to sit back and accept it. Instead, we’ve seen even the most complacent condo boards receive a rejuvenating shot in the arm that helped everyone spring back to life and start taking care of business again. 


It’s all in how you approach it – and that’s exactly what we’re here to chat about today. 


Five Tips to Help You Avoid Condo Board Burnout


1. Identify What’s Causing the Burnout in the First Place

There are several potential causes for board member burnout – and the earlier you can identify them, the quicker you can get in the way of impacting your condo board. 


Unbalanced duties are a leading cause of burnout. It happens mostly from leadership positions but also regularly from individuals in other roles who feel their specific responsibilities take up too much of their free time. The biggest frustration is the number of unnecessary meetings. Nobody wants to attend meetings. 


Lack of board member turnover leading to overly-lengthy terms can also be a significant factor in burnout. If a board member feels that they’d like to step down but that there aren’t any other condo community members willing to take up the torch, there can often be perceived (or very real) pressure to stay in their role. This leads to feelings of complacency and sometimes even resentment, none of which are conducive to running a functional and practical governing body. 


2. Address Any Burnout Already in the Works

If you’re coming to this article while struggling with a burnt-out board, don’t worry – all isn’t lost! Just take some time to focus, pump yourself up, and bring these tried-and-true tactics (enthusiastically!) to your next board meeting:


  • Put a priority on board/life balance. We never cease to be amazed at some of the hours we learn board members dedicate to the cause. One or two hours of condo-related work each week should be enough time to tackle everything and provide the board’s health and running as it should. 
  • Make sure board members know they’re appreciated. Take time to celebrate your board’s accomplishments whenever you can. No, really – it’s essential! Did that recent reserve fund study go off without a hitch? Did the big landscaping project just wrap up successfully? Arrange a board members appreciation night – it doesn’t have to be anything more than wings and drinks to make your members feel good about their contributions. 
  • Address problematic board members. Nothing makes serving on a condo board more miserable than a member with a bad attitude – or worse, one with a bullying streak. It can be tough to oust problematic board members – but there are plenty of ways to make it more challenging to get away with things, including open communication, consistent operational standards, and a code of ethics review. 


This advice should help you get your board back on the road to success. Remember that bringing burnt-out members back from the brink is a process, though – patience and persistence will be your virtues in tackling condo board burnout.


3. Beating Burnout Before It Even Begins

Is your board not dealing with burnout? Good on you all! All you have to do is ensure things stay that way. Consider the following approaches:


  • Ensure duties are appropriately dispersed and time commitments are well-defined for all board members, regardless of station. Further, work to create an atmosphere where members feel comfortable calling for help if needed – a surefire way to beat burnout.


  • Foster open and transparent communication at all times. This will be your best defence against board member burnout – present and future.


  • Build and regularly highlight consistent operational standards and codes of conduct to ensure all members are treated fairly, equally, and respectfully. 


These steps should help your board avoid any significant bouts of burnout in the future – or at least aid in identifying and addressing it if it arises again.

Need a bit more advice in tackling board burnout? Drop us a line at Catalyst Condo Management today. We’ve worked with plenty of burnt-out boards and will happily offer our best advice to get your team back in the swing of things again!