Can a 5 to 9 member Board of Directors do all the work? Yes, BUT...
Committees are a common governance solution to tackle specific work streams in more efficient ways than a Board of Directors might be able to dispatch in a timely fashion. Committees take many forms and, as with many pertinent common interest community topics, your state statutes might dictate the ways that committees can function. The following Committees Governance Structure document is excerpted from Bylaws Words of Wisdom. Remember that your Board often has authority to delegate specific processes, tasks and work streams, but does not have authority to delegate its ultimate responsibility to govern your community.
View an example committee charter at the bottom of this page. Please note the "less is more" charter format that eschews "WHEREAS" and "THEREFORE" for plain language. Committees do not need complicated and/or verbose charters to make them effective. Clear direction and excellent volunteer leadership will help committees shine and provide value added service to your community.
What kind of committees might you establish? Here are some ideas:
Finance (related to your annual budget, investment strategy, reserve study updates, etc.)
Information Technology (IT)
N.B. Committees are not experiments. If your association solicits interest and stands up one or more committees, and the members of those committees take the time to perform appropriate due diligence in executing their charter, your Board has a responsibility to execute and govern based on the recommendations you receive unless there are significant mitigating factors. Choosing to ignore reasonable, well-researched committee recommendations turns volunteer time and energy into a frustrating, low-yield experimental exercise.
Responsibilities of volunteer directors are generally reserved to your bylaws and left relatively vague (see our Board & Officers page). That does not preclude the Board from designating one or two Directors to serve as liaisons -- or from delegating specific, limited powers -- for a specific document or project as an alternative to forming one or more committees.
Volunteers are the heart and soul of common interest communities. Results from the Volunteer Involvement Survey reveal:
84% of CICs have at least one and as many as 10+ active committees, yet nearly 46% of respondents indicate their CIC DOES NOT make effective use of committees.