As I reflect back on the many gifts that I have received this year from the global governance and nonprofit communities, I'm inspired to share a few of those gifts with readers of this blog.
Today, I offer links to some of my favorite governance-focused videos. The "gift" comes not only via the content but also the voices offering it - thinkers and educators who have helped to expand my conception of nonprofit governance in healthy and creative ways in 2010. Click on each title to access the corresponding video.
Regular readers would be shocked if my list of favorites didn’t include at least one video featuring my friend, Hildy Gottlieb. Selecting only one favorite is a challenge – so you’ll get two (an equally big challenge!). I chose this one to share, because it highlights the critical importance of not limiting board focus to financial, legal and ‘mechanics’ concerns. Boards need to be looking to the future, and reaching out into their communities to engage support to accomplish their vision.
Okay, so maybe I do have a Hildy favorite – and this would be it. It’s my favorite, because it gets right to the heart of what matters most to me as a board member and educator (and, I suspect, to most who choose to lead via board service).
The oh-so-wise Alice Korngold shares insights into the essential elements of successful governance in this clip from the 2009 Carnegie Council New Leaders event. It should be obvious by the frequent references to her work on this blog that I am drawn to Alice’s thinking on governance. This video offers a great overview of a topic that should be of intense interest to all of our boards.
This is a new favorite, featuring a new governance friend, Lucy Marcus. This video introduced me to Lucy and to her work. Her focus here is not exclusive to nonprofit boards, so a few of the concepts may not feel like a direct fit. But it all expands our notions of governance. I was particularly drawn to her commentary on board member engagement, which should be of interest in any governance setting. The material to which I was particularly drawn begins around 5:53.
"(S)trategic planning, not as a static document, but something that happens every single day...a constant, ongoing process." This is why boards need to listen to Terrie Temkin. This video talks about the importance of thinking strategically in governance (and not exiling it to a rare - and usually hurried - planning event).
This “Movie Monday” video makes a case for persistence in addressing a perennial challenge for boards: bringing a diverse range of voices and perspectives to table. It’s hard. It matters. We need to keep working toward this important goal. Expanding our governance capacity is the reward.
Regular readers of this blog may be surprised to see this one on my list of favorites. I’m not a particular fan of the “big 10.” My objection isn’t to the list itself. My objection is to its portrayal as the be-all, end-all representation of the rich and complex (and motivating) responsibilities of nonprofit governance. It leaves out a lot (a lot of what inspires most of us to serve). But it’s a list we cannot ignore, and these brief videos do a good job of introducing them in an accessible way.
This video offers my interpretation of the Big 10, with a twist: four additional governance responsibilities that I believe should be included in any accounting of board member roles.