Organization And Management

Management of Meetings

  1. Preliminary actions to be taken prior to meeting
    1. Locate and review corporate charter and bylaws to determine requirements for board membership, elections, location/time of meetings and required notification of election and meetings
    2. Revise corporate charter and bylaws as necessary to allow for board membership, meetings, house rules, etc. and have copies available for everyone attending meeting
    3. Make announcement/notification of meeting as required by the existing charter and bylaws
    4. Prepare an agenda for the meeting and have copies for everyone
  2. Actions to take at the meeting
    1. Eligible (according to existing charter and bylaws) members vote to amend corporate charter and bylaws as proposed
    2. Election of board of directors
    3. Election of officers by board of directors
    4. Formation of policy direction and issue actions

Management of Regular Meetings (keeping them organized)

  • President always prepares an agenda for meeting with copies to be sent to directors and officers several days prior to the meeting or to be handed out at meeting. Agenda should list all topics to be discussed and voted on except those that come up at the meeting.
  • President and treasurer prepare written reports to be reviewed during officers' reports and with copies distributed at start of meeting. Copies to be included in minutes of the meeting.
  • Meetings should be held quarterly as necessary with minor actions handled by officers between meetings. Major decisions can be handled by telephone with the directors between meetings.
  • Undergraduate chapter should provide a report at each regular meeting. The report should reflect the state of the chapter regarding membership, financial condition, planned social functions, etc. This report should follow the report of the board of directors.
  • Follow Robert’s Rules of Order and insist on orderly discussion
  • Secretary should send typed copies of the meeting's minutes to all directors, officers, the undergraduate chapter, chapter advisor, division vice president and Central Office within thirty days of the meeting.
  • Plan some of the regular meetings to coincide with other activities that may bring alumni to the chapter (or other location) such as parent/alumni weekend, founders’ day, football games, etc.
  • Always have the site/room for the meeting laid out and ready ahead of time with necessary chairs, tables, etc. Consider comfort as much as possible in selecting the room for the meeting.

Management of House Corporation Functions and Potential Problems

  1. Domain Director should maintain regular contact with the president (or other active officer) of the house corporation regarding state of the undergraduate chapter, condition of the shelter and ongoing management of house corporation affairs.
  2. All repairs of shelter should be paid for through the house corporation and invoices kept by function (plumbing, etc.) or by contractor for future reference.
  3. A copy of the House Rules as required by the house corporation should be available to all undergraduate members and signed by each undergraduate stating an understanding of the rules and agreement to them.
  4. A house corporation should be involved only in those issues with the undergraduate chapter that relate to or involve the shelter, property, or directly affect the chapter's ability to meet its financial obligations to the house corporation. Other matters should be resolved by the chapter advisor, division vice president, division president, or others in the Fraternity's structure.
  5. A representative of the house corporation should conduct regular inspections (monthly, quarterly, etc.) of the shelter and report to the corporation president on the findings.

Potential Problems (And Suggested Solutions) That May Arise

  • Problem: A sufficient number of alumni not available to operate and manage the house corporation.
  • Solution: Identify capable and willing individuals and arrange for their initiation as alumni. The Fraternity has special conditions that allow for this.
  • Problem: New alumni are unwilling to serve on the board and/or existing board members are resigning due to the liability faced as individuals that can result from the undergraduate chapter's negligence or wrongdoing.
  • Solution:
    • Obtain Directors & Officers liability coverage as a house corporation. If this is not available, make arrangements for the corporation to reimburse all or part of the premium that an individual pays for D & 0 coverage under personal umbrella coverage.
    • Initiate rules that help eliminate or reduce those activities most likely to cause or result in accidents or actions from which liability can arise.
  • Problem: The undergraduate chapter cannot or is not meeting its financial obligations to the house corporation.
  • Solution:
    • Prohibit all or some of the social functions at the Shelter until the debt is paid.
    • Work with the chapter advisor and finance committee to determine where the funds are being spent, if income is sufficient, if unpaid members' accounts are too high.
    • Reduce house corporation expenditures on marginal items or repairs until the finances are improved, thus insuring that the corporation has sufficient funds to meet its obligations.

Miscellaneous Suggestions for Better Management

  • The house corporation president should always have a column or report in the chapter's alumni newsletter. It will usually be one of the most read sections.
  • All fundraising activities directed to alumni should be handled by the house corporation. Alumni will feel better about sending money if they know other alumni will manage it. This also allows for better long term planning for fundraising activities.
  • When/if the chapter or a chapter member breaks one of the house corporation's rules, think long and hard before backing down on enforcement of the stipulated penalty.
  • The division vice president should fully support any house corporation action in front of the undergraduate chapter. If the division vice president disagrees with the house corporation, that discussion should be held in private and without the undergraduates present.
  • When unpopular actions have to be taken by the house corporation, the division vice president should be willing to "take the heat" for it. This lets the house corporation stay more popular.

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