Thursday 26 November 2015

'Tis the season of the AGM and don't you just love it


Published 13/11/2012 | 14:21

IT'S THAT time of year again folks, wait for it, it's AGM season.

Sports clubs up and down the county are preparing for what should be one of the most defining meetings in any organisations year.

Let's get technical for a minute, AGM stands for annual general meeting, it's a place where positions change, where rules are amended, where tables are banged and decisions get made.

Most GAA clubs, for example, centre on three or four key positions. The two 'biggest' are chairman and secretary and the pecking order follows with treasurer and PRO with any amount of other positions bringing up the rear.

I am not for one second saying any position on a committee is greater or lesser than another but the ones I mentioned are usually the first four names people think of when they need to contact the committee or when it comes to the election of officers at the AGM.

There's a famous saying that goes "a committee is a group of people who individually can do nothing, but together can decide that nothing can be done".

Isn't that a brilliantly inspirational saying, for anyone who wants to better the committee they're on that's definitely a saying to go by, however, anyone that thinks the committee makes decisions when the officers and the members are all in the room discussing the issues is dead wrong.

Decisions get made in the little meetings that take place outside of meetings, just before meetings start and just after they end.

God forbid the people that have them, (all of us) might say what we wanted to say at the meeting, no, we wait until the decision is made, and although our idea is brilliant we hold it in and have a chin wag outside afterwards.

"Well, what did ya think of that?" is how these little conversations usually start off "Ah sure jases, why didn't they do X Y and Z sure it's the simplest thing in the world, they don't know what they're at, sure wouldn't you or I do twice the job" etc. And the best thing is, it's not just two people that have these conversations but little groups of twos and threes all over the car park or the bar afterwards. I suppose it's similar to the drunken conversations at dinner dances where players decide to commit to the county setup despite the fact they are 48 and standing in the goal for the Junior B team when they're low on numbers.

What about the awkward moment when everyone sits in anticipation for the chairman to thank everyone for coming and begin with the minutes of the last meeting. How hilarious is it when organisations only meet once a year and the minutes of the last meeting are read out and somebody has to propose and second the minutes. Brilliant!

As if anyone can truly say yes, every word there was dead accurate, now it probably is, but have the minutes of a meeting ever not been proposed and seconded?

There's another awkward silence when a person is proposed for a position on the executive.

That sounds so important doesn't it? The executive, it nearly sounds like a group of assassins about to plan the downfall of a major rival.

"Ok folks can we have proposals for the position of P.R.O," says the chairman.

"I propose Jim Byrne," is shouted from the crowd of six.

"Ah jases no lads, no, no, just don't have the time, I'll give a hand out but I couldn't commit to that," says Jim.

"Is there someone to second that?" says the chairman while completely ignoring the helpless Jim who is sitting on his own in the corner with a length of twine for a belt and the froth from a large McCardles he was drinking before the meeting still sitting snug in his mustache. And that is followed by two minutes of silence while the people decide if Jim is up to the job or is there anyone more suitable.

"I'll second that," says a man at the back, and suddenly Jim is the P.R.O after clearly ruling himself out.

Please let us know how your AGMs go, we'd love to hear all about them, and not about the official stuff we want to hear about the outside stuff, the good stuff!

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