Leadership and The Workplace

Nonprofit Spark

Renee McGivern

Nonprofit Spark – Quit complaining: best practices for non-profit board learning – 01/16/12

You know how you’re having a problem with your board? Consider that at the root of it is weak and possibly, worthless board orientation. All those complaints you have about how board members meddle or misbehave or don’t “get” the organization could disappear with thoughtful, ongoing board learning about what good governance is, how big picture the board needs to be, and how the board can best support the staff.

On the show this week, Dr. Debra Beck and I describe best practices in board development, drawing upon our adult education backgrounds. We turn the typical board orientation process upside down and describe the 70-20-10 adult learning process that makes direct experience a priority, allows for observation and mentoring, and last of all, focuses on formal training.

Debra is a non-profit blogger and consultant, and an adult educator. She has more than 25 years experience serving on boards. This experience has given her a strong understanding of the special challenges and rewards of board governance. She also is an award-winning distance educator with more than 10 years experience teaching online courses about non-profit management for universities in Wyoming and Pennsylvania.

You know how you’re passionate about the work you do for non-profits? Well, designing effective learning is our passion and we could have talked about it all day.