Executive Report: Doing things better, part 2

Updating our committees, getting you involved

By Anne Marie Howard, CEO



Who says nothing gets done in summer? I’m happy to report that the Association Board of Directors approved the recommendations of the Internal Structural Review Task Force, which met this summer to update and improve our committee structure.

As you consider what committees you’d like to serve on in 2013, you will see a purpose statement for each one. The statements have been updated by the task force, which comprises our committee chairs, their respective staff liaisons and other staff leaders.

See all the information and sign up today. I encourage you to express your interest in one or several committees. Here’s why.

There are several committees that simply require you to sign up — Government Affairs, the Young Professionals Network (YPN) and the three Diversity Council advisory groups (African-American, Asian-American and Latin-American). In others words,
anyone who signs up can be part of the committee.

Presidential appointments

The other committees, however, are by presidential appointment, and can have experience requirements and size limitations to fit the situation. For example, to serve on the Grievance or Professional Standards committees, a member has to have been a Realtor® for at least five years. Those roles require judgment that only real-life experience can provide.

The president also looks to balance committees based on diversity, including for what size firm the member works. I’m pleased that after concentrating on diversity for several years now, it is truly part of our culture. It helps us do a better job meeting the needs of the entire association.

I appreciate the hard work our task force members put in, especially our sitting committee chairs. Having them make a comprehensive review not only of their particular group, but also of the other association committees was a first since I became CEO in 2001, and maybe a first, period. Their valuable input, along with that of the staff liaisons, has made our committee structure more efficient and well-organized.

As I noted in my last column, I didn’t expect any major overhauls, but everyone was certainly open to that. It just didn’t materialize. The three biggest changes were these:

  • The Professional Standards Committee will handle hearings on violations of CMLS Rules and Regulations.

Writing and administering the rules and regulations will remain with the CMLS Advisory Group and MLS staff. This change, suggested by Vice President of Risk Management Michele Di Donato and Assistant Director of CMLS Policy Debbie Wey, will require some additional training, but overall will make us more efficient. Professional Standards will continue to hold ethics and arbitration hearings as well.

  • The Nominating Committee was expanded and renamed. The new name is the Nominating, Election and Bylaws Committee.

The bylaws portion of the new committee will give this important function a committee home, where bylaw questions can be addressed as needed. The new committee also will look at whether to move our election process from spring/early summer to one that is early summer/late summer.

  • The name of the Leadership Development Program changed to the Leadership Academy. Also, the name of the Leadership Development Program Committee changed to the Leadership Academy Selection Committee.

The committee’s name change clarifies that the role of the committee is to select the leadership class, while staff handles programming and budget decisions, with approvals as needed by the Executive Committee and Association Board of Directors.

The rest of the committees, as it turned out, only received mild tweaking from the task force, and no committees were eliminated. In one small change, the purpose of the CMLS Advisory Group now includes a statement formalizing that the group will consider new technologies once staff has reviewed them.

Please take a moment and think about where you can be of service to the association. We are only as good as our members stepping forward and making a difference. I hope you will.