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All Aboard!

OK all you executive directors, board officers, volunteers who care and have a passion for the mission: It’s 2010! Happy New Year! Have you made your New Year’s resolutions? One of your resolutions should be: full steam ahead, we’re bringing new energy to our board of directors.
I think you know exactly what I mean. The board meetings have become dull. Or, they have become painful recitations about declining revenue and cutbacks in program service to our customers. (Do you prefer “clients”? Fine. You have my permission to call them “clients.”)
You may be struggling to get a quorum to attend. And a reason for that may likely be that discussion is about the inconsequential, not the strategic.
Let’s get some pep into the work of the board!
Here are some quick tips to keep in mind. Bring them to your next board meeting and have some open discussion (ixne on the Robers Rules for this):
  • We have a job description for board members that’s up-to-date and reflects where we want to go in the next three to five years
  • Our strategic plan is updated, and our board agendas and discussion tie in to our articulated goals
  • Our governance or nominating committee is tracking attendance and participation of our board, and has candidates-in-waiting to fill vacant slots when terms are over or non-producers rotate off
  • Our senior staff and governance volunteers have learning opportunities for our board coordinated with our meeting schedule that brings us up-to-date on marketing and networking concepts that we can practice that expands the reach of our mission

If you’re getting the kind of energetic and effective performance nonprofit organizations need to advance the mission, the board is in synergy with your work. That’s great, and more power to you. Integrating activities that help ratchet performance up a notch or two is what the doctor ordered.

I welcome your comments: particularly, what you and your board are doing to get some energy in the tank to advance your mission.

You can follow my microblogs on Twitter @STEVENETWORK.

You can contact me to discuss how I can help you with a board development, strategic planning, or fundraising project. I’m good, and the price is right.

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