Dealing with Remote Environments

A CEO described the stress on individuals and organizations of being remote.  They noted that it led to lack of trust, rumors getting out of control, and very transactional relationships. They saw how people would reach out only if there was a reason to. The informal interactions in the office or over dinner – the ones that build empathy, connection, and trust —  are missing. Since many companies will continue to be remote or hybrid, addressing these issues is important. COVID Stress Makes Staff Feel Overwhelmed and Inadequate As told by a nonprofit CEO somewhere in the US I am… Read more

Eight Steps to Getting Your Board in Order

Happy New Year. I hope everyone had a relaxing and rejuvenating holiday and all are staying healthy! A new year is an opportunity to get your organization and your board organized. Here are eight items to consider. Some you will want to do every year, others periodically. 1. Create, Update, and Approve Committee Charters If you have Committee Charters, each committee should review them at the first meeting of the year. If you do not have them, ask each committee to develop a Charter that spells out responsibilities, membership, terms, leadership, and meetings. For example, responsibilities for a Board Development… Read more

Do You Need A Crystal Ball to Understand Your Board?

I have served on many boards. Questions have come up about how boards work internally. Some boards are very transparent. Others not so much. Sometimes, it seems all the decisions are made by a small group of people behind closed doors. I identified five areas where I think all boards need to be more transparent. How Do I Get on The board? Some boards have trouble finding new board members; others have prospects knocking at their doors. With membership organizations — where board members belong to the organization — or schools — where board members are usually parents or alumni… Read more

For Success, Pay Attention After You Hire the ED

I received feedback from quite a few readers after posting my last story about selecting a new CEO or ED. One reader said that before selecting a new CEO, it is important to have some foundational aspects in order, specifically: The board is clear about its role and about the difference between governance and service. Board and staff are aligned around a strategic plan. The board has an emergency plan if the ED is not able to continue to serve. The board focuses on professional development and meets frequently with the ED to discuss progress toward the strategic plan as… Read more

Be Intentional About Connections and Culture

I spoke to an ED of an organization in the mental health field. They reflected on the past year and some intentional actions that were taken to create connections and trust between board members so that hard decisions could be made. They also spoke of the impact of DEI training and that they are looking forward embracing advocacy. During COVID, ED Leans Into Board for Support We have a big board – 30 people. We are in the mental health field. Reflecting on the past year and more, I would say that I have leaned into the board in ways… Read more