[Originally posted on advocace.com on June 5, 2017 and repurposed for dickerson-bakker.com.]
Are you frustrated by the tone of your board meetings?
You can begin to change the focus and achieve great and meaningful work just by focusing on these five things:
- Mission Is Everything – Every time you meet, review the mission and make this a focus. Ensure that your organization has a clear view of the ministry’s mission and gain a commitment to work together with the members of the board and staff to protect that mission now and in the future. So many of our ministries change mission statements with each new director; Please stop! Mission is everything and everyone involved should believe in and be committed to fulfilling and protecting this mission.
- Everyone Is Committed to Giving Time – Board meetings should be attended by all members and the time spent at these meetings should be used to monitor progress. Make sure all necessary materials get to board members in advance of the meeting and use the meeting time to build a shared vision with your board that will define where the ministry is going and give your team benchmarks it can use to evaluate and track success.
- Everyone Is Committed to Giving Their Talents – Directors; get to know your board members and their talents and gifts. Inside of your diverse board of directors, God has given you amazing resources that can help the ministry accomplish its vision. Spend time with each board member and encourage them to use their talent. Lead your board; don’t wait for them to take the initiative. They have full- time jobs, families and other responsibilities; you can help them see their role in the ministry’s vision.
- Everyone Is Committed to Giving Their Treasure – Remember, everything starts with leadership. So, this too, starts with you. Are you giving to the ministry you represent? Board members must know they cannot serve without giving of their treasure to the ministry. This must be the standard for every board member. It does not matter if the gift is $5 or $5,000,000, everyone must give. If the board is not leading in this area it will reflect in the staff and even the fundraising department. Talk openly with every board member about the heart issue of giving, the power of generosity, and the multiplication you will experience after you start from within. (Read more about Getting Your Board on Board with Fundraising >>)
- Everyone Is United in Accomplishing a Vision – What creates unity in a ministry? Vision! 70% of every board meeting should be a discussion of progress toward realizing that vision. The board should be asking at each meeting “How can we help move the vision forward?” When a board is committed to this principle Satan will not be able to stop that ministry from growing. There is great power in unity. Consistently meet with your board members and do not take your relationship with them for granted. As your relationships strengthen, you will find that the diversity of the board is second to the shared vision that brings you unity, and that diversity will become an asset.
Directors, this challenge, like most of our challenges, is a leadership challenge. And, that is good news, because you are a strong leader! Do not miss the opportunity you have to apply your leadership skills toward building a strong board that works together as a team. When you spend time cultivating trusting relationships with each board member and you focus on building a shared vision, you are putting the ground work into growing a board that can consider change and innovation for the sake of the ministry and the vision, and ultimately for the glory and honor of God.
Want to learn more about these changing the focus of your Board meetings? Download Advocace’s free Board Engagement Kit >>