Insights from Starboard: Board Chair Companion

We are happy to share what we learn, and we do this as workshop instructors, by developing curriculum for the Maine Association of Nonprofits and individual clients, and by offering advice on our Starboard blog. Take a look. You just might find the guidance you need!

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What I want from my board chair

I have the good fortune of facilitating a monthly conversation with a group of first-time and relatively new nonprofit executive directors. After the first meeting, I asked them to identify topics on which we could focus future discussion. Not surprisingly (at least to me), the top choice was “the board and executive director relationship—effective relationships …
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Questions Every Board Should Ask

I advise the nonprofits with which I work to dedicate at least one board meeting each year to reviewing the strategic plan and the organization’s progress towards their shared goals. This same meeting not only presents an opportunity for the executive director or president to present the key elements of the action plan for the …
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Board members must have a shared commitment

It should probably go without saying that boards that function like a successful team have a shared commitment—a shared commitment to the mission and a shared vision for the organization’s future. However, in the board assessment work I do as a consultant, it is very, very common to find that board members aren’t sure whether …
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Recruiting board members who are a good fit

If you have ever been on a board with a board member who was a “bad fit,” you know how one person can change your perception of board service. You approach meetings with the secret hope that he won’t be there. You worry in advance about how he might react to the report you’ll be …
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Building a winning board team

Sometimes it is hard to avoid sports analogies when it comes to talking about board governance. A well-functioning board of directors is very much like a successful sports team—a group of talented individuals, each with unique and complementary strengths, all setting aside their personal agendas to help the entire organization achieve success. As the board …
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