Monthly Archives

March 2021

Jessica Katz, Operations & Account Manager

Jessica Katz, Operations and Account Manager

 

Q: What are the three best skills that you bring to your job?

A: I would say the best skills I bring to my job are organization, great communication skills, and drive for growth and improvement.

Q: Finish this sentence – On Monday morning you will find me …

A: Getting in 10 minutes of yoga as a start to the day, and then cozy in a sweatsuit with a hot tea at my desk to begin the work week.

Q: What’s a typical work day like for you?

A: I start my work day at 9am. The start of the day is usually taking inventory – seeing what has come in since my last work day ended and prioritizing tasks. A typical work day includes handling client inquiries by phone and email, preparing notices to be sent out, and setting up new clients in the system. Throughout the day, there is also lots of communication and conversations among the team as we help each other out and talk through any difficulties we may have come across.

Q:  Do you have any business skills or talents that people don’t know about?

A: I am a very fast typist, which even my coworkers likely don’t know about since we have all been working from home. My average typing speed is about 110 words per minute!

Q: What’s your favourite part about your job at CondoVoter?

A: Hard to pick a favourite part. I love engaging with clients on a daily basis. It is great to be able to help our clients through the process, and have that direct connection with them as an Account Manager. I love being part of an incredible company that values my input and feedback to promote growth of the organization and increase efficiency in all aspects. I feel very comfortable to bring my suggestions and ideas forward, and there is an open dialogue about how each of us can help CondoVoter to grow and be a part of that growth. I love being part of a great team that thrives on support and communication. There is always someone available to help when needed, talk through new processes or challenges, or simply just answer any questions that might come up. CondoVoter is a great place to work, and the Account Manager position is so multi-faceted and keeps me very engaged.

Update from CAI USA

Virtual meetings. CAI supports legislation that allows community association board meetings and annual meetings of the membership to be held virtually. These meeting rules and regulations vary from state to state and often are contingent on an association’s governing documents. Many states require associations to follow a nonprofit or business corporation act. If an association’s governing documents are silent on virtual meeting regulations, the nonprofit or business corporation act may allow an association to hold them. CAI supports an option for community associations to hold meetings virtually during and after the pandemic.

While quite a few state statutes authorize board and annual meetings to be held virtually, many states will benefit from clarification and codification for permanent authority beyond the pandemic. To date, 13 states have introduced legislation this year that allow community associations to hold virtual meetings, including Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Missouri, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Virginia already passed legislation this year amending the state’s Property Owners’ Association Act and Condominium Act to permanently allow, not mandate, virtual membership meetings subject to guidelines adopted by the association board of directors.

Electronic voting. CAI supports legislation that allows community associations to use electronic voting for elections. Electronic voting, if conducted properly, can increase engagement, save money, and provide a practical solution to in-person voting while keeping residents safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Four states have introduced legislation allowing community associations to vote electronically, including Hawaii, Maryland, Oregon, and Virginia. The Commonwealth has already passed legislation this year amending the state’s Property Owners’ Association Act and Condominium Act to permanently allow, not mandate, electronic voting subject to guidelines adopted by the association board of directors.

Virtual Meetings: One Year Later

“It’s the easiest format ever,” says Anne Beauchesne, OLCM and a property manager with Sanderson Management Inc., in Waterloo, Ontario, where she manages eight corporations. “Virtual meetings are better than in-person and, for a busy property manager, much faster.”

It’s one year since the coronavirus pandemic changed all our lives. It’s also one year since virtual meetings became the new normal for conducting board meetings and AGMs in the condominium sector. Due to government-imposed restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19, in-person meetings were effectively cancelled as property managers and their boards scrambled to find new ways to hold meetings for their condominium corporations.

“We had been looking at various platforms to host virtual meetings,” Anne explained. “CondoVoter was attractive to our budget.” Now, close to one year later and a smooth uptake Anne adds, “The team is fabulous and everyone there knows about meetings.”

“The team is fabulous and everyone there knows about meetings.”

As with anything new, there were some minor challenges especially with senior residents with no computers or email and little technical knowledge. But Anne says now many elderly residents are getting their kids and grandkids to help out so they are able to vote and attend the meeting virtually. In fact, Anne knows of 3-4 owners who are within their selective “bubble” and who virtually attend their corporation’s meetings and watch the proceedings on TV, rotating meetings from one condo to the other.

CondoVoter has been able to accommodate some unique needs for Anne and the condo corporations she manages. Things like last minute changes to dates, and switching over hosting duties to management to continue after the AGM or board meeting has concluded are just two ways CondoVoter has met Anne’s meeting needs. Anne appreciates the changes CondoVoter made to phone voting that now allow callers to take part in meetings and not just listen. “I’m very happy. I’m never going back to in-person,” laughs Anne.

Anne appreciates the changes CondoVoter made to phone voting that now allow callers to take part in meetings and not just listen.

Anne has one board that definitely won’t go back to in-person either. She says “I’m perfectly ok with that.” But she adds you have to know your properties and buildings. Each has different needs and demographics.

Anne has been pleased with the overall benefits of hosted virtual meetings. As a manager who chairs these meetings she adds “Virtual meetings are much easier for managers and guests such as auditors. There is no travel so it saves a significant amount of my time. From home I can log in and get information to the board meeting in real time. I can actually be better prepared.”

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