5 Strategies to Create Active Members on Your NGO Board

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    Probably one of the most frustrating things for an Executive Director is when their board members do not actively participate in events and fundraising. The problem is that without proper Board Training, many board members will never realize that it is a part of their role and responsibility as a board member to assist staff with types of actions.

    But there are some strategies that can be used to successfully involve board members in these activities. They are:

    • Board training and orientation – Ensure that your board, both returning and new board members participate in board training and orientation. This is an opportunity for them to be reminded that assisting with fundraising and events is a part of their job descriptions.
    • Put it on the board meeting agenda – If the Executive Director and the Board Chairperson inform the board when events are coming up and ask who will be able to attend and help out. Make certain you remind them that if they can’t participate in this event, they will be expected to participate in the next event.
    • Invite board members to sit on planning committees – When you invite board members to help to plan events, it gives them a sense of ownership over what is happening and encourages them to get involved and stay involved.
    • Send out invitations to the event – Make sure your board members all receive an invitation. Include an RSVP request and a polite note informing them if they have not attended previous events, that you would appreciate their participation.
    • Give a presentation – Ask members of your board to give a presentation about something exciting that is happening in your organization, or ask them to make a speech. It’s hard to say “no” if you are expected to speak at the event.

    Question of the Day: What other strategies have you used to encourage your board members to attend your NGO’s events and fundraisers?

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    For more resources, see our Library topic Nonprofit Capacity Building.

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    By Ingrid Zacharias, Managing Director, Envisioning the Future International, http://envisioningthefutureintl.ca/