Thursday, July 31, 2008

NFRC Considers Reducing Meeting Schedule

As the Board meeting continued, Chair Joe Hayden opened the floor for discussion on an item stemming from the Meetings Committee. Starting 2010, NFRC is considering going to two full membership meetings rather than the current set of three.

Explaining the methodology behind the committee’s thoughts on this matter, Meetings Committee Chair Jeff Baker of WESTLab explained that NFRC can take advantage of webinars and other forms of electronic technology to take care of business.

“I applaud reducing travel whenever we can,” said Tom Culp of Birch Point Consulting, LLC. “It would require a change to our bylaws, but if we had a provision to assemble a Web committee meeting, we could move a ballot all the way through.”

Executive Director Jim Benney noted that NFRC’s operating policies allow subcommittee and committee meetings to take place via conference call or Web.

While most supported the concept, others questioned whether or not NFRC would be sacrificing the personal relationships built at a face-to-face meeting.

"As a newcomer to NFRC, we appreciate how the task group has been working via conference call,” said Michael Cienian of Hunter Douglas, Inc. “But as I see the process, I think it is important to have face-to-face contact and establish relationships with everyone. We are coming into a new phase with attachments.”

Attachment Subcommittee Chair Fred Higgins of Wayne-Dalton, Corp. echoed Cienian’s remarks. “I like the idea of two meetings for the cost factor but I have so many interruptions when I’m in my office.”

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