Advice for a committee novice, please?

Well, now I’ve gone and done it. I’ve been elected to serve for one year on the (church) Fellowship committee. I know it’ll involve a lot of hard work and responsibility. The thing is, I’m a total novice at this… I have had no previous experience serving on committees of any kind. I have the slightest idea of what to expect, but not really. So does anyone have any advice? Any stories and pointers would be gratefully appreciated. Thanks.


Oh, you poor thing Flamster. Committees can be horrendous things to get involved in. I have found the ‘politics’ of such groups to be the most difficult. I would suggest sitting back and taking mental notes for the first few meetings, checking out who likes to be the Alpha member and the subtle (or not-so-subtle) power struggles BEFORE you jump in with advice or offers to take on responsibilities.

Try not to form any ‘allegiances’ to a particular member or ‘faction’ until you have a clear picture of the way things operate within your particular committee.

And good luck!! :stuck_out_tongue:

OK, any information here is from a high school standpoint, but you may find it useful.

  1. Get the phone numbers of every person on your committee.

  2. When people volunteer for something, have them sign-up on a sign-up sheet. Just make sure that they write it down. Writing it down will make it more of a concrete committment to them.

  3. Remind people. Hand out reminder notes, call them, whatever it takes to make sure that they get it done.

  4. If you cancel a meeting, make sure to notify everyone. I find it incredibly annoying to waste my time when I could be doing other this going to a meeting that I then find out was cancelled.

This is a committee of four (with the duties of five being divided amongst the four of us), so I think sitting back and taking notes will be a bit harder to do than if there were a dozen people. However, I will do my best to just observe. Thanks for the advice, kambuckta.

monica, thanks for the advice. We have everyone’s contact info, or should have by next week. Since we see each other at least once every week anyways (Sundays at church), and have phone numbers / emails, things on that front should be fine. Writing things down on a sign-up sheet sounds like an excellent idea, as does reminding people and such. I’d definitely get annoyed if a meeting was cancelled and I didn’t know about it. (although as the person needing a ride all the time, I probably would… but stranger things have happened.)