In dayswhen amusement parks were focused on leisure rather than heart-stopping rides, features like halls of mirrors, fun houses and animated fortune tellers were standard fare. Drop a coin in the slot, and the mechanical prognosticator would send forth your fortune on a tiny slip of paper.
Amusing, occasionally worrisome, the fortunes provided momentary entertainment, ending up in a wastebasket and quickly forgotten.
But today, community association professionals – minus the turbans or veils of yesteryear’s automatons – peer into 2011 with serious goals in mind. Associations, like all businesses, need to plan for the future; to consider what might be needed in the weeks, months and even years ahead; and to take steps to ensure that those needs can be met.
Of course, prognostication isn’t exactly a science, and in hindsight, often turns out to be less than perfect. But the process itself, of looking at the recent past and anticipating what is expected in the near future, can be a helpful planning tool.
So, where have communities, and the industry as a whole, been during the past year, and what may lie ahead in 2011? Once again this year, New England Condominium has asked members of its Editorial Advisory Board – all leaders in their respective fields – to give our readers their views.