Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wednesday wisdom: Duty of imagination

I don't remember exactly when I encountered this quote by Alice Korngold, but I do remember its impact: adding the missing piece to the nonprofit governance puzzle and making me a lifetime member of the Alice Korngold fan club.


I'd already sensed, but not quite articulated, the void between the idealism and stewardship motivation behind why most of us agree to serve on boards and the practice that we usually encounter once we're on the job. This simple - and simply profound - quote completed the puzzle: our responsibilities involve more than oversight. They also include definition and advancement of a better future for our communities. That should  be obvious, but Alice's gentle reminder is necessary and welcome nonetheless.

2 comments:

Nancy Iannone said...

I've loved this quote since I first saw you mention it and have shared it with a number of boards. For some boards, this is outside their comfort zone, for others opens possibility.

Debra Beck, EdD said...

I tend to share the quote, and the whole article (link included above), with most boards I encounter. The message simply seems to apply to a broad range of challenges that they face.

My experience pretty much matches yours. For some, it feels like a major, major stretch - though few reject it outright. It's just an initially uncomfortable idea. For others, it's a major "aha!" moment and a freeing one. It connects directly to why they signed on to serve in the first place.