FAQ – operation of the « Conseil d’administration »

Rédigé par Enrico Alberini

This page, intended for candidates for elections to the Conseil d’Administration (CA) of the Club des Cent Cols, describes and explains the specifications of the CA and its general functioning (which may change if the new team wishes), and tries to answer the main questions that could be asked by the candidates.

Be careful though: this document page may seem very long because it makes an exhaustive inventory of the dutiesof the CA. However, apart from the statutory tasks specific to certain positions (president, secretary, treasurer), a distribution of the other tasks will take place within the team according to the availability and skills of each. The exhaustive list of all tasks may allow some candidates to mentioning their own particular skills.

Becoming a member of the CA is an important decision; if elected, the club will count on your commitment and involvement in your role for the next four years. The CA meets statutorily at least twice a year: in the winter before the release of the annual review and in the autumn before the General Assembly. In addition to the quorum conditions, it is desirable that the maximum number of elected members participate in meetings so that they are productive. In the meantime, members generally communicate by email to discuss various matters relating to the life of the Club. Telephone meetings via teleconferencing software (easy to handle) can be arranged for topics requiring in-depth discussions

Being a CA member is much more than just attending meetings. The vast majority of work is done in the background, and requires a minimum level of skills in certain areas. First of all, a good understanding and absolute respect for our Rules of the Game. Indeed, the CA is the guarantor of the quality of our colcatalogues, and in the event of disputes within the National Working Groups, it is the CA which must decide, its decision must be trustworthy, and must be taken within acceptable deadlines. In addition, a team spirit is essential. That is to say, among other things, that the decisions are collegial. The CA performs many tasks, some visible and public, others less or not at all, but just as important; so you have to leave your ego at the door. The watchword is to be at the service of members. Equally important is the time available: fulfilling one’s role well on the CA can be quite time-consuming, or, at least, time-consuming during certain times of the year, such as when reviewing or preparing for the General Assembly. Most of the activity of the leaders takes place during the winter. May, June, July and August are the least busy months. This is why reading this document is essential in order to get an idea of ​​the workload involved. In fact, although it is not a statutory prerequisite, it is necessary to have an adequate broadband connection and to master the main IT tools: office automation, in particular Excel, Word (or open equivalents Open Office, Libre Office…) , mail, web and if possible group communications such as “Skype”. The members of the CA being, like the rest of the members of the club, very dispersed, it would be inconceivable to be able to be member of the CA without being connected via Internet. We hope this document can help you make an informed decision and we hope you enjoy reading it.

CA Structure

The CA is currently limited to a maximum of eleven members. There are three types of role:• Three statutory posts: Three people forming the “office”: president, secretary and treasurer. These three people, distinct, are required by the regulations governing associations “Law 1901″• Two appointed but non-statutory positions: Vice-President and Assistant Secretary.• Three untitled administrative positions. Certain tasks must be performed by statute by specific persons; for example, it goes without saying that accounting is the domain of the treasurer, the official communication of minutes of meetings and assemblies, that of the secretary, and the drafting of the moral report, that of the president. Apart from these tasks, the rest of the work is distributed to all members of the CA according to their skills and wishes; the members of the office participate in all the tasks common to the CA and also do other work, non-statutory, which they are committed to do. The CA can in certain cases, if it does not have the resources, the skills or the time, be supported by members external to the CA. The CA remains responsible for the work done by these colleagues. The most well-known example is that of the Territorial and National Delegates, who are among the main workers of the club, but whose work nevertheless involves the responsibility of the CA. The CA often has to vote on specific subjects. Each member has one vote. Only the president’s vote is decisive in the event of a tie. (NB: this measure has never been applied, the discussion having always made it possible to decide things). Any member of the CA, depending on their skills or wishes, can participate in work such as the design of Randonnées Permanentes or join a working group.   

Statutory roles in the office

Only certain tasks are statutory. The other tasks normally remain the responsibility of each of these roles, but can optionally be entrusted to other members of the CA. These three members also share a number of other tasks, but their statutory tasks with legal status must remain a priority.


The president assumes moral, legal and financial responsibility for the association. He provides stimulus for the various workers in the Club, in particular the regional organisers, in order to ensure in particular regional activity… Below is the indicative list of tasks:• Communication with the general secretary, the treasurer, the IT manager (s) on all matters within their competence before committing the CA and the Club,• Establishment and proofreading, in close collaboration with the secretary, of the meeting agendas and their minutes,• For the appointment of territorial delegates (DT), after discussions within the CA, solicitation of members with the profile for this role. Management of departures and renewal of DTs. Daily monitoring of messages on the DT mailing list and response to certain substantive questions, in particular on the application of the Rules of the Game,• Responses to suggestions and comments of a political or controversial nature made by members publicly or personally,• Attendance at the main meetings to deliver welcoming and departure speeches,• Before the General Meeting, drafting of the moral report for Infos Cent Cols, as well as proofreading of all the reports, texts and contents of this bulletin,• At the General Meeting, reading of the Moral Report and answers to any questions from members on the subjects discussed,• Writing the editorial of the magazine,• Writing newsletters to members,• Voting on behalf of the club at federal level,• Participation in departmental committee meetings and FFCT league, and if possible at the FFCT GA,• Maintaining relationships with other related associations and friends,• In some cases, response to press interviews on behalf of the club,• Contacts and invitation of local elected representatives, FFCT managers, etc. , at the General Meeting and at the main assemblies,• Keeping watch, in consultation with the other members of the CA, on the legal aspects of the club’s activities (insurance, séjours, intellectual property, etc.).


The Secretary is the main point of entry for all general mail sent to the club, and he also answers the club’s main phone number. He redistributes requests that he does not deal with himself to the persons concerned: specific letters, for example texts and photos for the magazine, requests to purchase catalogues and clothing are processed directly by the people who take care of these activities. Their addresses can be found in the magazine, in the Contacts section of the club’s website. For these tasks, the secretary can be assisted by secretary (s) -adjoint (s)• Registration of new members: Verification of pass lists. Creation of an electronic member card and registration of all contact details and “score” on this card. Writing a welcome letter with possible comments on the list if cols have been refused. Preparation of a diploma and enveloping the magazine + welcome letter + diploma + medal. Storage of paper or electronic documents received from the new member. As necessary, contacting the new member to improve their list.• Communication: Reading and replying to letters sent to the secretariat. Receipt and processing of some lists of cols and annual contributions sent directly to it,• Sending printed stimulus letters to members in arrears, once a year,• Medals: Receipt of orders. Engraving of medals and shipping.• Revue: Sending Revues to existing members who contribute late after sending the annual Revue direct mail. Stock management of old magazines and possible marketing.• Diplomas: ad hoc THEL extractions, in consultation with DTs, Regional Organisers and séjour managers to identify potential recipients, print diplomas for significant numbers of cols (500, 1000, 2000, etc.) which are given to members during gatherings, séjours and at the General Assembly, updating of an adapted database. Finally preparation and sending of their diploma to members who expressly request it.General assembly: Writing of the activity report, the convocation and publication via Info Cent Cols of the various annual reports submitted to the votes. Preparation of paper and computer voting equipment. Receipt of postal votes from members. Preparation of the counting of the votes (classification of the envelopes in numerical order, recording of the powers, etc.),• Drafting of formal minutes and minutes for the Revue.• Administrative relations with the prefectural authorities: he carries out with the Prefecture of Haute-Savoie all the legal formalities to which the Club is subject (various declarations, registration of documents, etc.)• Statutory meetings in January and September: invitation sent to members of the CA + GT + DT + others. Preparation of the agenda with the president and after questioning of the various invited speakers. Logistics preparation.• Editing minutes• Archives: Preservation of official club documents for the statutory period,• Accounting: establishment of cash and cheque accounts that it receives (new members, stands if applicable, and any request arriving at its home: annual subscription, purchase of catalogue, etc.). Deposit of cheques in bank and transmission of accounts to the treasurer.• Cent Cols stands (Easter in Provence, Federal Week, etc.). Relations with the FFCT and local officials. General organisation, planning and management, liaison with those who will be on these stands depending on geographic area and availability. Liaison with the managers of the clothing and stationery stock (catalogues, Topo guides, etc.) to have a few items to sell on these stands. For this activity, the secretary has been supported since this year by the person in charge of the shops (Bruno Litwin)• Stocks. The Secretary is normally responsible for the physical stocks of the club. In practice, the management of clothing is entrusted to a person external to the CA (currently HelèneLaxenaire) and that of paper stocks (catalogues, Topo guides, etc. to Gérard Birelli). He also manages the stocks of medals (100 and 1000 cols) and ensures their replenishment.Management of FFCT licenses: drafting of the registration form with updated prices for publication of Info Cent Cols and on the website. Registration of license applications. Sending checks to the Treasurer. Registration of members on the Fed’s computer tool. Relations with the FFCT regarding licenses. Receipt of licenses from the Fed. Sending licenses to interested parties (around one hundred licenses per year).


• Accounting: he receives invoices, makes payments, performs bank cross-checks, notifies interested parties of the receipt of transfers. Recognizes the proceeds from the sale of clothing and stationery.• Depositing the sales product cheques on the Club bank account,• Management: Checking the financial conditions of the draft orders and those of the draft contracts.• Verification and presentation: preparing the club’s financial statement, transmitting the accounting elements required by the Auditors, drafting and presenting the financial report for the General Assembly.

Non-statutory “appointed” roles

The Vice-President may replace the President in the event of prolonged absence, or if the latter is unable to perform his duties. He may represent the President at certain meetings, but this replacement is often dictated by availability and geography; the president can therefore designate in these cases a representative other than the vice-president. The Assistant Secretary assists the secretary as required. He has the same access rights to computer files as the secretary. For the rest of their work, the vice-president and the assistant secretary are assimilated to the other members of the CA having unnamed roles (below).

“Unnamed” roles

The three other members of the CA, as well as the vice-president and the assistant secretary, share the majority of the tasks common to all of the CA, and also take care of their own tasks. These are described below. Common or specific tasks within the CA The CA appoints the members of the working groups (GT), the verifiers of the GTs, the Territorial and National Delegates (DT) and the regional coordinators. CA members can represent the club in external bodies or working groups with an advisory role (example: work with tourism committees of general councils, etc.)

Voting on col approvals

The national working groups (GTs) develop the catalogues of cols and manage the modifications (new cols, deletions, various changes) which come back from the field or which are proposed within the GT. Each GT has an auditor who ensures that the work of the GT follows the rules of the game. A member of the CA is more particularly responsible for relations and monitoring the work of the GTs

:• In the event of a dispute between the verifier and the majority of the members of a GT, he sends the elements back to the CA. The CA must then vote to resolve the dispute
.• Voting must take place within acceptable time limits, so as not to slow down the work of the GT, and with the greatest respect for the rules of the game
• He informs the GTs of the CA’s decisions and follows up on the implementation of the supplements
.• Members who have proposed cols should be able to receive an acknowledgment of receipt and information regarding the processing of their request.

 Voting on various subjects

CA members must also vote on a certain number of administrative and “moral” questions, on the responses to be given to members’ suggestions and remarks, etc. Internal matters or those directly involving the CA are subject to a vote by email or other online tools. More complex matters or those requiring the participation of other club volunteers, such as GTs or DTs, are generally discussed at a semi-annual meeting.

Annual Revue

The annual Revue is the club’s flagship publication and the primary vehicle for communicating with all members, whether they’re online or not. The editor-in-chief of the Revue is a post of the CA, the tasks of this post occupy the holder from December to the beginning of May, or even beyond, to process the returns and copies which have not reached their recipients (new sendings, corrections of address…). Two main areas for the tasks of the journal editor:1.The environment and the general organization2.The actual composition of the journal This document describes the current process. With regard to the composition of the Revue, the editor-in-chief is free to achieve the objective (IT tools, working methods, time invested), namely the production and delivery of documents.

1. Environment and general organisation

Preliminary research to find a printer: specifications, request for a quote, and presentation of offers to the CA for the choice of the printer.
Note: the composition of the Revueby a graphic designer, the geographic proximity of the printer (or the graphic designer if he does not belong to the printing company) is preferable to the editor being called upon to travel often to facilitate the delivery of the data and their presentation in the Revue.        
Composition of the reading committee and definition of working methods with creation of a rating file shared via the internet.
Precise definition of the content of the envelopes that will be sent to members: Revue + additional documents (supplements for the year, registration forms and various order forms).
Establishment of the print production schedule (computer graphics and Revue printing + printing of various documents attached) and choice of the latest date fordispatch.         
Via a customer account, establishment of direct mail contracts with La Poste (PRO branch) for the sending of 2500 copies in France and abroad, with fixing of the date of deposit of envelopes and indication of the distribution France / foreign.       
Printing of routing labels (in collaboration with the IT manager)·        
 Upon delivery by the printer of the sealed full envelopes, recovery of professional plastic lockers at the post office for transport of the envelopes thus ready for direct mail,·         Organisation of a labelling group and labelling session (normally at the editor’s home).·         Printing of deposit slips sent by post,
·Transportation to the post office of the hundred or so filled lockers (in the vehicles of volunteers from the labelling group).

2. Composition of the journal

The editor-in-chief receives texts and photos from members by e-mail and records them by computer, texts on one side and photos on the other·        
He enters the handwritten texts (he can seek the help of members of the voluntary reading committee) and translates or has translated the texts in English, Italian or GermanHe reads and makes a first correction of the texts, offers to the authors of very long texts a shortened version·        
He sends the texts in batches to the reading committee, which he leads and requests until the end of the operations of choice and classification of articles, choice and wording of headingsHe receives the versions of the texts re-read and corrected by the members of the reading committee and summarizes the corrections and suggestions (abundant communication by messaging for certain texts)·        
He ensures the updating, by all the members of the reading committee, of the rating table which will make it possible to establish a classification of the texts on the substance and the form, as well as the definition of the section in which they will appear eventually·        
Always in agreement with the reading committee and on the basis of the classification induced by the notes assigned to the texts, he draws up the summary of the Revue hitherto fixed at 80 pages, certain texts being therefore not retained even if they have been examined with the same attention. The summary, a graphic designer’s working tool, includes an estimate of the space each text will occupy·        
He chooses the photos that will accompany the articles (among those sent by the authors of the texts if they are of sufficient quality or among the thousands of photos sent by the members, sorted and stored in the photo libraries that he has created annually ), possible communication with the authors to send photos in high definition·        
For a first work of layout via the composition software, it transmits to the computer graphics designer, in the form of individualized directories and numbered according to the summary, each of the texts accompanied by the chosen and captioned photos·        
He works with the graphic designer at the printer (ranges from 2 to 4 hours per day, 2 to 3 times per week over 4 weeks, from mid-March to mid-April) to perfect or redo the layout , balance the content of the sections and ensure a good distribution of texts / photos·        
He collects the journal in PDF format, transmits it to the CA and to the reading committee for proofreading and corrections, and this as many times as errors remain without exceeding the deadline defined with the printer to start its print job·        
He himself receives or creates the documents annexed to the Revue (Tableau d’Honneur, statistics, registration bulletins for stays and GA, various purchase orders) also to be printed·        
He gives the green light for printing and collects the sealed envelopes within approximately ten days, launches the labelling and deposits in the post office in the first week of May·        
He updates annually or recreates the clothing order form (double-sided) with the different prices and the new models chosen, for publication with the Journal and on the website.

Randonnées Permanentes

A manager external to the CA manages registrations and their follow-up. It communicates with registrants or responds to requests for information and draws up an annual report which is presented to the General Assembly.The CA must:
• Ensure the update of journey logbooks according to the new approved cols or deleted cols.
• Edit the different documents: flyers, road books. Printing is done through the contract with the copy shop mentioned above,
• Possibly assemble the files for FFCT labelling of permanent hikes

Frequently Asked Questions

This Frequently Asked Questions can be supplemented as and when questions are asked.

Workload and availability

Q How much time does it take to be a member of the CA per day?

A It all depends on the role and tasks that you agree to take on under your responsibility. Some positions may occupy you full time for several hours a day for a few months, as in the Review. Others are more spread out over the year. The important thing is your availability throughout the year for votes and other activities involving the entire CA. Depending on the tasks you will take care of, you will need to be able to be available for the periods required to accomplish these tasks when they have a fixed schedule such as stays. A stay manager could not, for example, be absent for several weeks near this stay. It is difficult to make an accurate assessment of everyone’s workload. In essence volunteering requires a certain availability, but it is clear that some are more available than others.

Q Is it necessary for all CA members to participate in the semi-annual meetings?

A If possible, yes. Note that our statutes stipulate in article 8bis that a member of the CA who has missed three consecutive meetings without valid reason may be considered to have resigned. CA members are reimbursed for their travel expenses for these meetings.

Q If I am on holiday or on a business trip, is it necessary for me to remain available electronically?

A No. Your activity at the CA (in the context of all volunteering) must remain a friendly and fun activity and not a constraint, except for the cases mentioned in the first question of this section where you must ensure the tasks for which you have committed, your professional time and your free time are yours.

Q What should I do if after a while at the CA I realize that the workload is too heavy?

A The important thing is to try to gauge the workload before you run for office. Read the specifications carefully, talk to current CA members, contact the President, and have a clear idea of ​​what you can bring in skills and the free time you have available. Once the load distribution is done, it is more difficult to make changes. However, if you want to adjust your workload after a break-in period, there will normally be enough latitude and flexibility to be able to make adjustments.

Q Do I have to participate in all séjours, all meetings, all GAs?

A For meetings, see above. It is normal that all members of the CA can participate as much as possible in the General Assembly, which is the most important statutory event in the life of the club. The International Summer Concentration is also a highlight which generally benefits from the presence of all members of the CA. But as for statutory meetings, an absence may be excusable.


Q Do I need to have some IT equipment to be able to be a member of the CA?

A Your choice of hardware, internet connection and software is entirely yours. However, you must be able to read, create and modify office documents such as those of Microsoft Office, Libre Office or Open Office. You must also have broadband internet access because many large files are frequently sent by email; you need a recent browser, as well as email software that can handle heavy files as attachments. Finally, since this software is used for audio conferences, you must have “Skype”, or at least agree to install it to participate in the CA telephone meetings. Skype is free software, we can help a member install it and take it in hand.

Q What other technical skills should I have?

A This naturally depends on the tasks you undertake. The treasurer must have basic accounting skills, although it is not necessary for him to be a chartered accountant in professional life (an asset, all the same!).