Your nonprofit’s board is your biggest asset, but if you don’t get your board deeply engaged, you will never access all the potential value they can offer. Creating nonprofit board engagement is critical for every organization that craves efficiency, improved fundraising, and a high level of performance. Engaged nonprofit board members are passionate about their duties and work harmoniously to help your nonprofit mission. In today’s podcast, Sabrina Hernandez from Supporting World Hope and Stephen Halasnik from Financing Solutions, a leading provider of lines of credit for nonprofits, discuss how to create nonprofit board engagement.
Creating Great Nonprofit Board Engagement
The importance of a nonprofit board cannot be overstated. A nonprofit board of directors is at the heart of its operation. They perform vital leadership functions in shaping the organization’s future, ensuring its success, and keeping it on track to actualizing its mission. With this in mind, every nonprofit leader should gear effort toward creating a great nonprofit board engagement so as to build a strong organization that delivers on its mission.
Building a robust nonprofit board engagement entails building relationships, developing trust, having open communication, and more. Read on as we walk you through the tips for creating a great nonprofit board engagement for the successful operation of your nonprofit.
Tips For Building Nonprofit Board Engagement
People give their best to the organization they serve when they’re passionate about what they do. Engaging your board members will help them get more connected to your nonprofit and take their responsibilities more seriously. Below are the tips for building nonprofit board engagement.
Building a virile relationship is critical to creating engaged board members. You should have a mutual relationship with your nonprofit board by striving to get to know your board members. Spending time with your board members outside the board meeting is a veritable way of developing a lasting relationship.
On the other hand, your board members need to have relationships with your nonprofit’s communities and stakeholders alike. This is because they will better connect with people who are instrumental to your nonprofit’s operation if they have a good rapport with them. Therefore, relationship management skills are essential for the board of directors as they help them to conduct effective fundraising.
Learning how to build trust with your board members is critical if you want to get them deeply involved in your nonprofit activities.
Without trust, it’ll be challenging to communicate and coordinate with them. Building trust helps create an environment where people feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and helping one another to perform tasks.
A culture of open communication is essential for engaging your nonprofit board. When your board members don’t engage in open communication, they act on mixed signals and ambiguous messages leading to poor performance.
Open communication helps to foster collaboration and sharing of ideas that promote organizational efficiency. People on the board should be able to express their views, issues, and thoughts with one another transparently and honestly.
Have a Recruitment Process
You should articulate your mission, be patient and wait for the right people to come along to fill your board gaps. You have to be strategic about your recruitment process to reach your goals.
For instance, if you need someone with construction experience, it will be proper you recruit an engineer to fill the gap. Ensure you’re intentional about your recruitment process. Interview the people you want to include on your board, tell them the expectations, and let them know that fundraising is part and parcel of their duties.
Setting expectations is a critical aspect of engaging your board members. In other words, you should precisely state what every nonprofit member is responsible for to promote clarity and accountability.
When people know what they are responsible for in an organization, they tend to be more engaged and focused, giving them a sense of belonging.
Have Consistent Meeting
Another way you can keep your members engaged is by holding consistent meetings where you discuss matters concerning your nonprofit. You should have a calendar where your meetings are consistent. For example, you can be holding your board meeting every last Friday of every month.
Additionally, you should have a system where you can constantly remind the board members about the next meeting and let them know beforehand the agenda of the meeting.
Educate Your Board Members
You should orient your board members to your nonprofit mission to avoid having board members who are disconnected from your organizational goals. For example, ‘Your board needs to understand what your nonprofit does for them to become a great advocate and ambassador’.
In addition, your board members need to be trained on their varying roles and responsibilities. They must learn nonprofits’ dynamics to fit in and perform effectively.
.Put an Evaluation Process In Place
Putting a system in place to assess performance is an important way of engaging your nonprofit board members. The evaluation process allows you to critically ascertain the outcomes of the activities of your nonprofit board.
You must periodically assess your board’s performance based on your established KPIs (key performance indicators). The essence is to identify areas for improvement as this will help you realize your nonprofit objectives.
Learn About Our Guest
Sabrina Walker Hernandez has over 25 years of experience in nonprofit management, fundraising, and leadership. She grew her operation revenue from $750,000 to $2.5M and completed a $12M capital campaign. She is certified in Nonprofit Management by Harvard Business School and is a bestselling author.
Learn About Stephen Halasnik
Stephen Halasnik is the host of the popular Nonprofit MBA Podcast. The Nonprofit MBA podcast’s purpose is to help nonprofit leaders and their teams. Stephen is the Co-founder and Managing Partner of Financing Solutions, a leading provider of loans for nonprofits in the form of a Line of Credit. Stephen is a best-selling Amazon author and is considered a leading authority on building great, purpose-driven businesses.
Stephen lives in New Jersey, and his top life mission is to raise his two sons, Michael and Maxwell, to be good men.