By virtue of its vision “The False Bay Business Network is the business forum of choice in the Cape Peninsula” the need for the following constitution with priorities, authorities and constraints clearly defined for the effective operation of networking in a defined geographical area benefiting members. Morally and ethically FBN members are obliged to consider fellow members as preferred supplier, all things being equal.
- Only one member representing one industry, profession or business shall be eligible at any one time.
- Membership eligibility is by approval by fellow members.
- Membership is not seen as a right and can be jeopardised by failing to attend Friday meetings for more than 3 consecutive weeks without an apology and that an acceptable attendance be a minimum of 80% in any 3 month period.
FBN meetings will be held on Fridays weekly from 07:00 sharp to 08:30 at a venue to be decided by the membership. Meeting shall be conducted as per structure.
The meeting structure will ensure that the following business is effectively attended to:
7:00 – 7:15 General networking amongst members
7:15 – 7:45 Welcome, apologies, introduction of guest, induction of new members
- Submission of formal agenda / minutes of previous meeting and matters arising
- Reporting on new applications, details of references etc. Membership vote on acceptance / rejection.
- Giving, receiving and reporting of referrals
- One-minute intros
- Speaker 10 minutes or as approved by the meeting (intended to add value)
- New business and closure
Two Thirds of the full membership constitutes a quorum. Binding decisions shall be made by majority vote of those present at the meeting if a quorum exists. Only written and signed proxies will be accepted.
The officer bearers of the FBN consist of a Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Membership Officer, Executive Secretary, Treasurer and Special Events Co-ordinator who shall be elected annually by a quorum of the members at a properly constituted AGM in April or within one calendar month thereafter, to serve for one Chamber year. All Office Bearers shall be Nominated and Seconded from the floor at the AGM. In the event of multiple nominees, the vote shall be by show of hands. The committee reserves the right to co-opt or nominate at their discretion.
The committee is authorised to decide on the following matters:
- Budget allocations as determined at the AGM.
- Ex gratia spending within limits of R500 (or as determined at the AGM) and within the budget. Expenditure in excess of this amount to be referred to the weekly meeting for majority approval / rejection.
- Action with regard to misconduct, conflict or matters concerning the network.
- Membership eligibility for approval / rejection by the members
- Advertising and support of special events within the limits of R500 (or as determined at the AGM)
Committee meetings will be held at least one a quarter and decisions appropriately reported to the meeting.
Any vote requiring membership participation must be placed on the agenda for the following week
Ongoing conflict between members of the network undermines the synergy within the group and impacts negatively on the effectiveness of networking. In order to limit conflict situations to a minimum the following procedure must be followed:
- Members should, as far as possible, attempt to resolve conflicts themselves.
Unresolved conflicts must be brought to the attention of the Chairperson as soon as possible.
- The Chairperson should then convene a committee of impartial members to act as mediators in resolving the conflict.
- If the Chairperson is party to the conflict the duties will rest with the Vice Chairperson.
- The Chairman or the Membership Officer will investigate the allegations.
- If the member is deemed to be at fault, he / she must be urged to rectify the problem to the satisfaction of the complainant.
- Work with the member to try and assist and develop him / her in the identified problem areas
- If a member repeatedly brings the Network into disrepute and the full FBN membership deems that all reasonable attempts to assist the member have been unsuccessful, his / her membership can be terminated by means of a majority vote.
Visitors, Prospective New Members and Guest Speakers
Any member may invite a visitor, prospective new member or guest speaker to a meeting, but must comply with the following procedure:
- Inform the Chairperson and Membership Officer of your intention.
- Inform the full membership at a weekly meeting so that potential business conflicts and undesired personalities can be discussed in order to avoid embarrassment.
- The Chairperson will then decide on an appropriate meeting for the guest to attend after consulting his diary.
- Guests who wish to join the FBN may attend 2 meetings only. At the next meeting the application will be discussed and the applicant informed accordingly by the Membership Officer.
The Honorary Membership Award is the highest accolade the FBN can bestow upon an individual. Honorary membership cannot be claimed as a right or an automatic evolution.
The award is bestowed upon an individual and not a business. A member can be rewarded with honorary membership, but the benefits of honorary membership commence once the member terminates his/her normal membership. The member must thus adhere to all the normal requirements for the members and also maintains all the rights of a member, until resignation. Thereafter the restrictions and advantages of an honorary member become applicable.
Who qualifies to be an Honorary Member?
Under normal circumstances it would be those who have attained eminence or status within the membership. Exceptional circumstances will allow the consideration of external members who have close and meaningful collaboration with the FBN.
Any member of the FBN can submit nomination for honorary membership via a member of the committee. The committee will bring approved nominations to the membership for final decision determined by majority vote.
Definitions of the Office Bearers’ Roles
- The Chairperson is responsible for the smooth running of the FBN in accordance with the constitution.
- The Chairperson shall not serve for more than 1 consecutive year.
- Shall support the Chairperson in all appropriate matters and assumes the chairperson’s duties in his absence
- Shall be responsible for the portfolio of marketing and advertising
- Consider potential member’s eligibility and if acceptable follow application and acceptance procedures to completion.
- Initiate an investigation and report with regard to absentees or default action or behaviour by a member, considered by the chairperson and committee members to bring or have brought the FBN into disrepute or to the full meeting if necessary for decisions (exceptions only).
- Encourage recruiting of potential members by all FBN members.
- Initiate and circulate minutes in co-operation with the Chairperson
Handle and co-ordinate paper documentation addressed to the FBN and distribute for appropriate action.
- Ensure attendance register is maintained and correctly completed, absentees being noted
- Report quarterly on defaulters
- Absence for more than 3 consecutive weeks– all members
- Committee members in default in excess of 50%
- Record detailed minutes of all meetings
- Prepare, record and report accurate records of FBN finances quarterly. Present statements of account:
- All receipts and banking.
- Collect and ensure all subscriptions and fees are up to date.
- Inform the membership officer for any action to be taken on fee defaulters.
- Collect all cash for sundry items i.e. breakfasts, special events etc.
- Ensure that all payments approved by the executive within the constituted limits are correctly executed – payments above these to be referred to a Friday meeting for approval / rejection.’
- Banking structure – The committee shall open and maintain a cheque account with one of the local banking institutions. Withdrawals shall be on the signature of any 2 of 3 of the members with designated authority.
Special Events Co-ordinator
Shall be instrumental in creatively defining the need for events and / or functions for fundraising, entertainment or any other cause.
In partnership with the Chairperson or Treasurer – or any member of the FBN as necessary, determine;
- Objective, date and venue.
- Ensure effective organisation
- Control and be accountable for all organisational and financial aspects of such functions.