June described a compliance violation letter she had received from her HOA board. The letter stated her garbage can could be seen from the street. Over the years, she explained, the can size had changed so the cans no longer fit into her shelter. She said, “I feel stuck.”  

She had lived in her HOA for 30 years and had never received such a letter. Honestly, she felt offended. The letter incensed her.

Why couldn’t they have just approached her as a person? Or, why did the letter feel so cold and impersonal?

The more she thought about it, the more it infuriated her. Furthermore, she felt stuck. What could she do? The situation spiked her blood pressure every time she thought about it.   

I was listening to her describe all this and asked, “Are you certain the whole board even knows about the situation?”

I called over one of the board members and asked her to describe again what was happening.

The coolest thing happened.

This board member had not heard about the letter. As he listened and empathized, her blood pressure lowered. Her expression relaxed. He offered to come to her place and join her in finding a solution. He also went to the board to change the violation letters. He told the board the letters need to be addressed personally, kindly, with a paragraph about what is appreciated about the member. Then, the communication of the violation needs to also include the board’s willingness to assist the member in finding a solution if needed.    

This board member wanted the board to foster relationships with the residents of their community. This board member followed through on all this, solved June’s violation, and built a relationship.  

At Genesis Good Hearth HOA Center we thank you for the hard work you do and the good choices you make.  Your work does matter and as you invest in the people you serve in order to build those relationships, it will overflow into a community people want to live in.