A Peak Into the Organizational Structure

The Body-Mind Centering Association’s organizational structure leads to there be very interesting leader/follower relationships. At the top, there is the Board of Directors. This includes the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and five other supporting members. Then, there are the BMCA Committees, which all have “Committee Chairs” that head them. These committees include the North American Conference Committee, the Continuing Education Committee, the Ethics Committee, the Finance Committee, the Journal Committee, the Marketing & Outreach Committee, the Membership Committee, and the Scholarship Committee. The committees all meet periodically and report to the Chair who then, in turn, reports to the Board of Directors. There are also BMCA staff members who run the day-to-day operations. This includes an administrator and a membership coordinator.

All of the committees have the autonomy to do their prescribed jobs as they best see fit. Oftentimes, this will lead them to wanting to make a change or create a proposal in order to keep up with the current times. However, ultimately, all of these propositions will need to go through the Board of Directors and get their approval. It can be done by email, however the Board only meets as a collective body once a month. Especially now when all of the Committees have been meeting excessively to make rapid changes and propositions due to COVID-19, this buffer period from when an idea is first proposed to when the Board actually makes a decision on it has been moving slowly. Another piece of it is because the Board is hearing from everyone, they need to figure out what they want to prioritize and how to time all of the changes. For example, if both the Membership Committee and the Journal Committee want to host webinars, the Board needs to decide how to space them out.

Because of the long buffer period, the BMCA has run into some issues of certain Committees trying to work around the organizational structure by getting approval from highly respected and ranked BMC professionals. Other Committees have even been trying to become more autonomous by changing their status in the bylaws by renaming themselves a “fiscally sponsored branch” of the association. I believe that there needs to be a bylaw put in place where Committees that try to go around the written structure are punished for doing so. For the organization to run smoothly, the President must have the final say, rather than members of the Committees, or else everyone will feel as though they have the autonomy to do anything and will not see the bigger picture and end goal.