Committee Member Guidelines
Make the call
Endeavor to make committee calls and/or read post-call summaries so you can stay current on committee progress. It can be frustrating and disruptive to the group when members who only intermittently participate make comments or suggest changes late in the process.
Be on time
Late arrival on a call can be disruptive, so try to be on time.
Keep the noise down
If you are in a noisy area or have to tend to something else while on a call, please mute your phone when not speaking. If you must take another call or leave the office please do not place the call “on-hold” so as not to hear your companies on hold message/advertisement
While the Committee Chair is encouraged to facilitate participation of all people who “attend” committee calls, it is also the responsibility of committee members to be mindful of the group and to encourage the participation of all members by not dominating calls, grandstanding, or straying from the topic at hand.
Share the stage
In any committee there will be members who regularly participate in CIC Committee work and those who are new to it. Whenever possible, encourage (and offer to help) new members to serve on a panel or represent the Committee when presenting work product to the larger body
Most committee chairs devote a lot of time to their committee both on and off committee calls. On occasion, a member may feel a side conversation (or e-mail) is more comfortable, which is always welcomed by the Chair. However, committee members are encouraged to share their thoughts with the larger group.
Keep your eye on the prize
Generally, committees are tasked to address a specific issue or, on their own, they will determine what issue/s they would like to tackle. Help the Chair and fellow committee members by staying focused and on-task with whatever issues your committee is working on.
Committee Chair Guidelines
The following guidelines are derived from interviews of past Committee Chairs and committee members. All contributors recognized the unique leadership styles of committee chairs and the unique characteristics of each committee. A common theme in the recommendations was a call for an organized and systematic approach.
- Whether you decide on the issue/s to be addressed or respond to a request of the CIC body or Chair, clearly articulate the problem or issue to be addressed by the committee and break it down into succinct, solvable and prioritized components.
- There is no one method for solving problems. (See the problem-solving video and sample problem solving matrix, offered with these materials.) Regardless of the method you intend to use, define it for the group at the outset, advise that this is the process you intend to use, and stick to it.
- Conduct regular committee chair conference calls, at least one time per month.
- Send meeting invitations via Outlook Meeting Place, GoToMeeting, or some other mechanism that allows invitees to respond with “accept”, “tentative” or “decline” and places the meeting in calendars whenever possible. When sending the meeting invitation, be sure to put the committee name in the “Subject” line (e.g. Subject: CIC Insurer-Repairer Relations Committee, CIC Committee Chair Meeting, etc)
- Set a brief agenda for every meeting sent to all committee members before the meeting.
- Read the Anti-trust statement at the beginning of each meeting call. Consider reading the CIC Mission Statement, as well.
- Regularly restate the goals of the group to the group.
- Stay on course and beware of personal agendas or attempts to divert the committee with issues that are not directly relevant to the committee’s charter.
- Ask people to identify themselves when speaking, much like they do at a CIC meeting. This helps the other participants know who is speaking.
- When conducting conference calls, be sure to allow sufficient “air” time so that everyone can participate.
- Start and stop committee calls on time.
- Summarize highpoints or takeaways of the meeting in a brief post-meeting e-mail. (Consider enlisting a helper to take notes for you.)
- Advise committee members that you are available to talk or communicate off-line, but encourage their participation on calls. Sometimes reinforcement of a great idea or gentle encouragement can draw out shy or reserved members and add to the richness of the group exchange.
- Consider creating sub-committees to handle elements of larger issues.
- Ensure that your committee has fair representation of all segments of the industry as appropriate. If you need assistance in soliciting committee members see the Chair.
- Encourage rigorous debate amongst your committee members.
- Set due dates for assigned tasks.
- Remind the committee that your work is “living,” subject to review and change over time. Too often, committees become stalled for fear of taking a position in a dynamic environment.
- There are many by-products of committee work including videos, white papers, suggested guidelines, Powerpoint presentations, and panel discussions. Consider whether any or all of your presentation can be summarized or converted to a format that can be placed on the CIC website so that it can be referred to and used as a resource.
- Consider a call to members who may have attended committee calls in the beginning but stopped attending, or members who make the call but do not contribute. Very often, these calls will reveal insight into problem areas or areas of discord that can easily be remedied with your guidance.
- Be forward-thinking. Consider your plan for the next 2 or 3 CIC meetings. Imagine any future presentations and subsequent follow-up meetings.
- Participate in Committee Chair calls (scheduled by the CIC Chair), and be sure to ask for time on the CIC meeting schedule if you wish to make a presentation. Additionally, provide a brief outline for the CIC Chair to post to the agenda to explain to attendees the nature of your presentation.
- Committee Chairs must send final draft to CIC Chair for approval and instructions for distribution.