Creating High Engagement Non-Profit Boards

The basic features of traditional boards were simple. We had committes, rules of order, reports and votes. And in many cases, we had disengaged talent whose numbers logically decline with disengagement. It's a call for reinventing board architecture and culture.  These days, we're taking whole new approaches.

Boards as networks

We're looking at boards as resource and connection networks that can continue to grow and diversify without limits to size. The richer the ecosystem of support the better for the organization. We can still have a core governance group.

Governance as project incubator

People engage in projects that do real work with specific impacts. When decisions need to be made, the governance group can launch a project team to research and design the best options possible. The governance group engages the whole board network in identifying, resourcing and accomplishing projects that move the organization forward. These keep people, talents and assets well engaged.

Virtual participation

Using shared documents and conference calls, any number of board members can participate in the work of the board virtually, without the constraint of face to face meeting requirements. This is ideal for board members with young families and travel that makes weekday evening meetings a challenge.

Bias for diversity

Diverse talents and perspectives lead to more creative contributions by the board to the organization it serves. This means creating meaningful projects that can engage people across generations, perspectives, networks and business sectors.

These are just a few of endless ways to invigorate boards so they flourish.