Friday, November 13, 2015

Governance toolbox: 'Pinterest is your nonprofit board's friend' edition

Photo by Pinterest

 My pool of curated nonprofit board resources keeps growing on Pinterest, but I seldom talk about them here. Today, I'm offering links to a few of my favorite - and most popular - collections related to nonprofit board topics.

Advocating for nonprofits -- This is a brand new one, created in response to my work this week with a local board interested in taking a bigger role in sharing its organization's stories. I'm still pinning some core resources, but there's enough there to give you a decent overview (and more than a few good ideas). Definition of "advocating" will be deliberately broad. There are many ways to engage others for your nonprofit and its mission.

Nonprofit board essentials -- Exactly as the name suggests, this is a collection of articles, tools and other resources that are my go-tos when anyone asks about what it means to govern (or what they're getting into when they say yes to your invitation to serve). This is my happy place, especially since it contains foundational work by some of my favorite governance thinkers and writers.

Save our (nonprofit board) meetings! -- How we structure our board meetings, and how we stimulate board member creative and critical thinking during that time, can make or break a governing body's effectiveness. This board includes resources that offer practical - and occasionally radical - ideas for making the most of your meeting time.

Engaging nonprofit boards -- This one complements the meetings board nicely, looking at individual (and sometimes collective) motivations and challenges to full participation. It's also one good starting point for board chairs and other leaders.

Leading nonprofit boards -- Did someone mention board leaders? Resources here offer different variations on a theme: how to inspire, direct, and challenge our boards to provide their very best in their service.

Nonprofit board dynamics and boardroom behavior -- There's what we know we should do, what we are required to do, what we plan to do. And then there's what happens when we bring interested but time-pressed, occasionally fallible individuals into a room to talk about tough subjects. It often doesn't go where we expect or need it to go. Sometimes, it gets a little ugly. This board offers resources for recognizing the interpersonal dynamics at play when people get together and being smarter about how to create a culture where cooperation and creativity are the default.

Must-read nonprofit board resources -- Bookworm me loves this one. Most are nonprofit board-specific titles. Most are books. All offer something expand and deepen thinking about nonprofit governance.

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