Nominating the Right Board President

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We’re pleased to bring you this guest blog post about nominating your nonprofit’s board president, written by Susan Detwiler of The Detwiler Group.  Susan is a Standards for Excellence Licensed Consultant.  Standards for Excellence Licensed Consultants are an elite group of independent consultants that have been selected by the Standards for Excellence Institute and have received extensive training in using the Standards for Excellence code and program materials for the advancement of their work and the nonprofits and other institutions with whom they work.  To find a Licensed Consultant in your area, check out the online listing of Licensed Consultants. And be sure to follow Susan’s informative blog at detwiler.com.

Campaigns, Caucuses, Primaries & Promises……

It’s the quadrennial Presidential election season, and everyone wants your vote. 

While a contested election may be good for the country, doing the same for your nonprofit just distracts you from delivering your mission.

Especially if your entire organization is committed to the same mission and your whole board supports the strategic plan.

Then what makes a good nominee for president? What makes a good nominee for ANY officer on your board? These are the questions your nominating committee should answer.

Before asking WHO, figure out what your board president needs to do the job.

Here are a few questions to start you off:

  • What level of commitment and drive does our president need, in order to keep our plan on track?
  • What skills does our president need to be able to keep our board focused on the future?
  • What kind of president <-> CEO relationship will make it possible for us to achieve our goals?
  • What specific knowledge should our president have upon entering the role, and what knowledge can be acquired on the job?

Only after answering those questions, should you start seeking a president from among your board members. Because then you’ll know how to evaluate whether they’re ready for the job.

Similar questions can be asked about any board officer position. What questions would YOU ask, before contemplating a new secretary, treasurer, vice president?

The post was originally published by the Detwiler Group.  Susan Detwiler is a Standards for Excellence Licensed Consultant who specializes in strategic planning, governance, board excellence and facilitation. Located in the Mid-Atlantic, she works with agencies across the United States. Have some thoughts to share on this subject?  Get in touch with her at sdetwiler@detwiler.com.

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About susandetwiler

26 years for-profit work; 7 years nonprofit; and I see a lot of overlap -- and differences. Let's explore them! Currently consulting to nonprofit organizations in fundraising, strategic planning, leadership development and marketing. Currently also considering how to help people become better philanthropists with their time and money.
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