The Center for Association Resources

Icon

Is an association management firm focused on helping Non-Profit associations succeed in their mission.

Board training…..getting qualified people on the board

Another in a series of articles related to association management selected from our reading list by:
Robert O. Patterson, JD
CEO/ Principal
The Center for Association Resources, Inc.

Board Training — Getting qualified people on the board – The Center for Association Resources

What constitutes an effective and productive board member at a non-profit? As part of the governing body of the organization, a good board member is one who first understands fully the group’s mission and goals, as well as its legal obligations and significant responsibilities. This is true whether a non-profit is in its infancy, is in transition to becoming a more mature organization, or is already an established institution. The non-profit board’s membership should consist of people who are either experienced in non-profit board functions or who are willing to proactively learn about the roles and acquire the tools and knowledge to be competent contributors.

Most of the time, individuals serve on a non-profit board because they are passionate about the cause. However, passion alone is not enough to fulfill the many duties asked of each board member. Time commitment is a necessary requirement – for attending board meetings, preparing for the meetings, reviewing proposals, budgets and other documents, and fundraising.

Speaking of fundraising, many people who are new to non-profits don’t realize that one of the main functions of the board is to raise money. These board members need to be comfortable with a common policy among non-profits to either donate funds themselves or actively fundraise (or both). Board members may also be asked to organize and host fundraising events or to meet with foundations or government agencies that award grants to non-profits. Time commitment aside, each board member should have sufficient business and leadership skills to approve budgets, establish a process to create a strategic plan, hire and evaluate the executive director, and ensure the legal and ethical integrity of the organization. In order to perform the roles and responsibilities dutifully, the board should evaluate its effectiveness and identify areas where a new board member may bring on skills that would be complementary.

During growth periods, a board may need to grow too. Sometimes the need to find new board members arises from resignation or when board members reach their term limit. Recruiting for board members may start with referrals from the current board, volunteers from the organization, or from the staff. There are services that match prospective board candidates with non-profit organizations such as boardnetUSA and VolunteerMatch. The tasks of screening and determining a board candidate’s qualifications rest with the board. There should be a process to evaluate the candidate as well as a process to bring the new person on board.

As leaders wanting to make a difference, the board must be made up of individuals who have sound business skills, experience with board duties and functions and commitment to developing a strong board by ensuring each member is qualified to meet the needs of the non-profit organization.

Advertisements

Filed under: Association Resources, Center for Association Resources, Chicago, Fund Raising, Leadership, Marketing, Non-Profit, Planning, Strategic Planning, Strategy, The Center for Assocation Resources info, Training, , ,

Board training…..getting qualified people on the board

Another in a series of articles related to association management selected from our reading list by:
Robert O. Patterson, JD
CEO/ Principal
The Center for Association Resources, Inc.

The governing body of a non-profit organization is its board of directors. Whether a non-profit is at its infancy, or is in transition to becoming a more mature organization or is already an established institution, it is vital for its board to be effective and productive. The non-profit board must understand and perform its legal obligations and significant responsibilities fully. Therefore the non-profit board’s membership should consist of qualified individuals who are either experienced in non-profit board functions or who are willing to proactively learn about the roles and acquire the tools and knowledge to be competent contributors.

Most of the time, individuals serve on a non-profit board because they are passionate about the cause. However, passion alone is not enough to fulfill the many duties asked of each board member. Time commitment is a necessary requirement for attending board meetings, preparing for the meetings such as reviewing proposals, budget or other documents and fundraising. A main function of the non-profit board is to raise money. It is a common policy among non-profits to require each board member to either give or get a certain monetary amount annually. Board members are also asked to organize and host fundraising events or to meet with foundations or government agencies that award grants to non-profits. Time commitment aside, each board member should have sufficient business and leadership skills as the board needs to approve the budget, establish a process to create a strategic plan, hire and evaluate the executive director, and ensure the legal and ethical integrity of the organization. In order to perform the roles and responsibilities dutifully, the board should evaluate its effectiveness and identify areas where a new board member may bring on skills that would be complementary.

During growth periods, a board may need to grow too. Sometimes the need to find new board members arise from resignation or when board members reach their term limit. Recruiting for board members may start with referrals from the current board or from the staff. There are services that match prospective board candidates with non-profit organizations such as boardnetUSA and VolunteerMatch. The tasks of screening and determining a board candidate’s qualifications rest with the board. There should be a process to evaluate the candidate as well as a process to on-board the new member.

As leaders wanting to make a difference, the board must be made up of individuals who have sound business skills, experience with board duties and functions and commitment to developing a strong board by ensuring each board member is qualified to meet the needs of the non-profit organization.

Filed under: Association Resources, Center for Association Resources, Leadership, Planning, Strategic Planning, The Center for Assocation Resources info, Training, , , , , ,

Leadership training and development for non-profits

Another in a series of articles related to association management selected from our reading list by:
Robert O. Patterson, JD
CEO/ Principal
The Center for Association Resources, Inc.

Every successful organization or business must have competent leadership.  For the non-profit organization, its leaders are the board of directors and the executive director.  Jointly they communicate the vision, set the goals and provide the direction for the organization to achieve its mission.  As leaders, the executive director and each board member must dutifully carry out their roles and responsibilities.  A leader must also recognize when he or she needs training and development and should seek the proper help to fulfill the requirements of the job in order to advance the organization.

The most important staff role of a non-profit organization is its executive director.  While the primary job of the executive director is to manage the day-to-day functions and the staff (including developing the staff), he or she also needs to work closely with the board of directors on a variety of initiatives such as strategic planning, fundraising, and participate in board involved committees.  Whether the organization size is small, with a budget of less than one hundred thousand dollars; or large, with a budget of over five million dollars, the executive director must have excellent business and people skills and teamwork to work along with staff personnel and the board as well as interface with the organization’s constituents and supporters.  To develop the breadth and depth of skills required for this non-profit leadership role, many nonprofit services offer classes and coaching.

Also vital to the non-profit organization is its board of directors.  Most often non-profit board members serve because they are passionate about the cause.  Therefore board members’ talents and skills vary and may or may not compliment the staff or each other.  Sometimes the board members need to learn about their roles and responsibilities and how to perform them as they are a governing body sanctioned by the state.  There is a wealth of information online about board duties as well as agencies that provide consultation to build and develop non-profit boards in the areas of fundraising, strategic planning, succession planning, governance, and managing the performance of the executive director.

A key position on the board is the president.  The board president leads the rest of the board members by being clear about the board’s role, sets examples of behavior for fellow members to follow, maintains a business focus and develops the board into a cohesive and productive body.  If an area of board development is to bring on training, there are many workshops and programs that would help the board and its president to be more effective leaders.

A trained and developed board and executive director are poised to help the non-profit organization through challenges, to transition the organization to the next level, and most importantly to achieve the mission of the organization.

Filed under: Association Resources, Center for Association Resources, Fund Raising, Leadership, Marketing, Non-Profit, Strategic Planning, Strategy, The Center for Assocation Resources info, Training, , , , , ,

October 2017
M T W T F S S
« Sep    
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031