Activities at First Meeting of a Committee/Task Group

Introductions and developing a working relationship

·         Have each member introduce themselves

·         Provide (or have an exercise that provides) some information to give people a sense of members’ personalities, values, beliefs, likes/dislikes, etc.  This is to get to know the person as a person.

·         Share general information everyone needs to know about each other, e.g., name, address, telephone, interests, etc.

·         Discuss any individual tools and special skills, e.g., graphics software, proofreading and editing skills

·         Discuss work habits, e.g., compulsive, procrastinator, task vs. process oriented, etc.

·         Discuss what the committee can do to enhance maintenance activities, since this committee will be a very task oriented?

Establish Rules of the Committee

·         What the committee expects when a member may be absent from a committee meeting.  Record this and include with your first set of minutes.

·         Decide on how to make decisions

1.      Formal, e.g., Robert's Rules of Order (motions, vote).  This is highly recommended.  See for details

2.      Intermediate, e.g., majority rule only if a vote is requested

3.      Informal, e.g., everything done by consensus.  This is not recommended for this committee.

·         For this exercise, the chair will prepare/distribute the meeting notice, agenda and minutes.

·         What to do when someone feels the committee is not working well (without offending other members)

·         What should the committee do if someone does not contribute their part of the assignment (assume that this could happen). 

Clarifying the Purpose

·         Discuss each member's view of the Community Assessment and Intervention Planning Assignment that the committee will complete

·         Discuss things that will help or hinder achieving the committee's purpose

Decisions needed for the Community Assessment and Intervention Planning Assignment

·         Identify the condition of concern or situation that your group would like to address

·         Identify your community of concern (geographic or interest based)

·         Identify the roles that will be played by each group member.  Your roles should reflect the major stakeholders in the condition you are addressing, for example, if you were addressing drunk driving, you might have a policeman representing law enforcement, a pastor representing churches, a MADD staff person representing victims, a bar owner representing the alcohol industry, a social worker representing an alcohol treatment center, etc.

·         Discuss what authority (sanction) the committee has to proceed and if that authority is sufficient, e.g., a group of concerned citizens, appointed by United Way or city mayor, etc. 

·         Name of group of your group if you have an obvious one 

Note that if you do not get all the tasks accomplished this week, you should accomplish them at the next week’s meeting.