Assuming you have a mission, vision, and values statement, or core values, or purpose statement, begin asking a series of questions:”What committees do we have that are not doing anything that helps these statements?” Eliminate them. Next, “What committees during the past year did not do anything?” Eliminate them. Then, “What committees did not accomplish much for the amount of time they consumed?” Eliminate them. Finally, “What committees actually did something last year that is productive and do not take much time?” Keep them.
Of course nothing works that neatly. But if you take along term view you are not under the gun to do it all at once. Start out by not propping up committees no one wants to chair. Just let them die. Move on from there and do not go out of your way to help anyone find people to serve on committees that do not matter to the mission. Begin to ask why do we have these? Do we need them. Fifteen years from now things will be different. Remember, there are no quick fixes.