Recently a client asked us why providing Board development was important. We had some easy answers.
Why is Board development important?
There are six important reasons why associations should provide leadership development to their Boards:
- Many Board members do not understand their legal responsibilities – the duties of obedience, care and loyalty. Failure to fulfill these obligations puts the organization at risk.
- Many Board members have backgrounds as managers and have little understanding of the strategy and policy work that must be accomplished by a Board.
- Many Board members have little experience working as a member of a collaborative decision group and do not understand roles, responsibilities or the relationships that will make a Board effective.
- Some Board members view the role of staff as subservient servants rather than as professional partners; time consumed addressing power and control issues is not time the Board can spend doing the work that the organization needs it do.
- There are effective practices that make Boards successful and bad practices that inhibit efficient operations. Board members need to know the difference and what practices fit into which of the two categories.
- A well informed and functioning Board is a far more enjoyable experience for Board and staff members than an undereducated and dysfunctional Board
Board development is the way to promote such successful practices and avoid the opposite condition of failed leadership and poor governance.
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