eHam Forums => Clubs => Topic started by: KB1JCY on June 10, 2003, 09:41:32 AM

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: KB1JCY on June 10, 2003, 09:41:32 AM
I am a co-founder of a club under development. I've only been licensed for 6 months but bring to the table years of business management knowledge and experience. I've proposed introducing business concepts to the other founder and the group that will be the "board". The reception was quite icy. All I'm asking is that we properly do the financials, plan our marketing, and develop management structure before we launch. I've explained that being proactive is better than constantly putting out fires.

It's just that the other founder and the group is hung upon the term "business". They emphaticly do not want to run the club as a business. But there's no way around it if we are to run a repeater. There's too much reponsibility to ignore.

Is there room for professionalism in amateur radio clubs?

Has anyone faced this issue when starting a serious repeater club? Is it normal for an amateur radio club to operate in a business-like fashion or am I off base?

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: KB1GYQ on June 17, 2003, 09:36:15 PM
While I'm certain that you have much to offer from a "business" standpoint, I believe most people just want to hang out and have fun - leave the business for "9-5". Try  organizing only what really _needs_ to be...

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: NA4IT on June 19, 2003, 05:26:28 PM
If you place business practices with volunteers, pretty soon you don't have volunteers. In fact, you have no one.

Do it for the fun, fellowship, and service to the public, do it legal, and enjoy it.

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: N7NBB on June 26, 2003, 10:01:03 AM
The "club" should be an "ORGANIZATION". As such it should be run with some degree of... well, organization. (use that term instead of "BUSINESS")
TOO many people "freak" when they hear the term BUSINESS, and think "PROFIT"  buy low sell high, bottom line, etc etc.

All organizations have expenses.  If your's owns a repeater or two then there is repeater maintainence, a phone bill for the autopatch, electric bill for power for the system... How about Site rent? If your repeater takes a "lightning hit" or the controller or transmitter goes Tango-Uniform... where will the $$$ come from to pay THOSE expenses?  Do you have "DUES" ?  Who is keeping track of that? Who gets a say as to what the dues are used for? Say an SK's spouse donates some equipment... do you "divvy" it up? who is to say who gets what from that scenerio? Do you sell it and reap the profit?   Who can join, how much do they pay, do you have meetings?  Do you plan to HELP any other public agencies?  Do you have MOUs with them?  What if someone (say a non-member just observing your operation) gets injured... or what if a member get's injured. Does your group have insurance? IF not, are you INCORPORATED??, or can the injured person SUE EVERY ONE OF YOUR GROUP INDIVIDUALLY for damages.?  

(Sounds like "business decisions" to me)

OF COURSE HAVE FUN... of COURSE don't make your organization a "BUSINESS CLUB". but also have enough forethought to be prepared to weather any "storm" that comes along.  There IS (without a doubt) going to be different ideas, infighting, backstabbing etc. as everyone goes off on their seperate agendas.. a good "business" plan will help prevent that.  Everyone will be on the same page, and there will be a valid ... dare I say it???  "SET OF BYLAWS" to detail all the sticky stuff.

nuff said

Best of luck with your ORGANIZATION's ORGANIZATION !


Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: KE4MOB on July 02, 2003, 01:22:56 PM
Well, from my experience, it pays to have one or two honest, intelligent people in the club leadership who can be trusted to keep tabs on such matters such as FCC filings, IRS paperwork, state regulations, etc.

These people are allowed to work on their own for the most part, simply because to explain what they do cause most hams' eyes to immediately glaze over and drool begin to run from the corner of thier mouth...

I serve as our club president, repeater trustee, and the person who handles all the "official" governmental paperwork.  We obtain funds from the county government, membership dues, and donations--meaning that the majority of our major purchases are really the county's property and we use dues and donations for operating activities.  The club doesn't even own the repeater--it belongs to one of our members, and as such me (as repeater trustee) and him (as owner) are solely responsible for it's upkeep.

However if the club gets 501(c) status, that greatly narrows the scope of business dealings that the club can be involved in.  But that's another horse altogether.

It all boils down to the question "Where does the money come from?".  If it's from dues (and only dues) then you have a certain leeway with the club financial structure.  But if you receive any outside funds (especially through solicitation, fund raising, government subsidy/grant, or donation) there will have to be proper oversight.

Take it from someone who has been there....make sure you have all your ducks in a row BEFORE you have the bake sale or go door to door.

Steve, KE4MOB
President, Russell Co (Va) ARC

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: WA4MJF on July 07, 2003, 04:20:10 PM
I've been a corporate officer for both huge ham clubs
and smaller ham clubs.  In both the biz was
handled at a seperate BoD meeting with all
members invited to attend.  Most did not.

73 de Ronnie

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: N2BR on July 09, 2003, 10:45:22 PM
Most club i have seen are just another click!!

Title: Club Business Structure - Help!
Post by: KB9YKY on July 21, 2003, 01:57:02 PM
Why in the world would there be any need for any more repeater clubs in New Hampshire?