Friday, July 10, 2015

Governance toolbox: Mid-summer miscellany

I'm in the mood for a bonus mish-mash of board-related links today after taking such a focused approach to tool sharing last week. With two weeks worth of possibilities saved up, why not? No particular theme follows, just thought-provoking, random goodness.

Is "knowing" obsolete? And other powerful questions -- Okay, I'll admit it. Valerie had me when she opened her post with a reference to Warren Berger's wonderful A More Beautiful Question. But there is, well, beauty in what follows: a great case for the power of questions in learning and life.

Meet your 5 most dysfunctional coworkers -- Or, in our case, board members... Yep. I've served with at least one good example of all five personality types in a nonprofit board setting. I've undoubtedly displayed one or two of them myself in that environment over the years. Whether or not our personal experiences reach the extremes described here, it's important that we not let more subtle demonstrations of these behaviors disrupt our flow and capacity as a group. If you're a nonprofit board leader, be on the lookout for these types of dysfunctional modes and personalities and be prepared to address them before they poison your good work. Leader or not, work to ensure that your board culture remains collegial and productive - and an environment where these behaviors and attitudes are extinguished quickly.

The power of belief - mindset and success -- This TEDxManhattan Beach talk by Eduardo Briceno dovetails nicely with this week's "Leading with Belief" post.

Do we govern from a growth mindset? Do we govern as if we believe that we have the capacity to learn and grow and change? Or do we operate from a fixed mindset, where life and circumstances are already laid out before us and impossible to change? How do our board practices confirm or deny that?

Leadership begins at the end of your comfort zone -- This new-to-me 2014 post by Lolly Daskal offers a logical jumping-off point from the previous link, and a positive close to this week's toolbox. Whether as individual members or the board as a whole, the governance experience - and its outcomes - benefits from our willingness to "be fearless and challenge the vision" and to "be smart and challenge yourself." Take this post, share it with your board, and talk about how you might act as if one or more of these comfort zone stretchers were true.


Shari Hamilton said...

Another excellent post, Deb. I especially appreciated the ideas for dealing with the five special personality types and the TED talk on developing and nurturing growth beliefs. You are a prime example of someone who is always reaching out for knowledge and expanding her capabilities. Proud to call you my friend.

Debra Beck, EdD said...

I'm grateful for the affirmation that you're finding something of value in what I'm sharing here, Shari. Thanks for your support!

Apologies for the brief moderation delay: I'm in the middle of an extended spam deluge and this is the one way I can seem to keep it in check.

Govern on!