Your powerhouse board members are likely leaders in their organizations, community and churches. These are exactly the people you need to make your organization a success! Most of their time each day is spent in meetings, making decisions and discussing problems . . . and by the time they come to your board meeting, they may be drained.
5 Simple Ways to Instantly Improve Your Next Board Meeting
Do your board members a favor: Shake up your board meeting format to energize your members and help them engage for the good of your organization. Here are five ways you can change your next meeting:
- Take a 5-minute break to call donors to thank them for their gifts. Your donors perceive your board to be the highest form of leadership and authority and your organization. At every board meeting, take a five-minute thank-a-thon break and give each board member a handful of donors to call. Be sure to list gift amounts and any background information that will help your board members connect with the donor. Include a few sample lines of what to say in the call. Then sit back and let the magic happen! Not only will this make your board members feel the joy of fundraising and dramatically increase their connection to donors, but this also has an overwhelmingly positive impact on donor retention.
- Include a short personal testimony from a client or have staff person describe a day in on the front lines. Hearing a personal story of how your organization made a difference recently fuels your board members’ passion for the cause and gives them a toolkit of powerful stories from the front lines to share on fundraising visits.
- Have a board member describe the mission and why it’s meaningful to them. This reconnects your board members with why they are serving and inspires everyone in the room. Encourage your board members to share an accomplishment they’re proud of.This is a great way to spotlight their engagement with your organization and let them do the talking.
- Throw out Robert’s Rules of Order. Your board is not a parliament. Don’t be afraid to have simple voting when you need to and ditch the formalities. Create agendas driven by goals and outcomes. Board members get tired of the same old committee reports, motions and votes. Change it up to be outcome driven.
- Make time for strategic conversations. Plan a board retreat for extended time to tackle an interesting item you’ve wanted to explore. Split board members into small groups or pairs to tackle the problems and report their findings.
By implementing these ideas, you’ll freshen up your typical board meeting. Your members will appreciate the new approach. The effectiveness of their efforts will multiply for the good of your mission and those you serve.