“I check your website regularly to peruse your latest and greatest.” (Subscribe to my blog to receive weekly tips and resources. And peruse the archives.)

I just went on your website to do some research. Wow, I’m so impressed (more so that I was already) — and thankful for the amazing collection of resources. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Bravo to you for making it public and really accessible.” (CT foundation advisor)

General information (BD)

Basic Principles of Governance
Corporate governance is different than management. Do you and your board members know the difference?

Destroy Executive Committee
Join my worldwide mission to destroy all executive committees. They are too dangerous and don’t add sufficient value.

Firing Lousy Board Members
It’s tough love day. Yes, remove board members who don’t perform. Start with enhancing attrition. If not doesn’t work, thank and release.

Questions for Building Best Board
Challenge yourself – and your board, too. Explore these questions.

Sample Bylaws
Yes, I collect bylaws. And too many bylaws are far too detailed. Check these out.

Sample Policy for Board Operations
Inspired by John Carver’s work. Read his books! Check out his limitation policies. Think about how you expect your board to operate.

Tips To Improve Your Board
Compilation of various ideas about how to strengthen your board.


Composition Policy
The best boards are intentional about their composition – including skills and behaviors and more. Do you have a policy like this?

Inventory of Skills for the Board
How do you ensure that you’re intentional about how you compose the board? Here’s a tool to help you fulfill your own composition policy.

Recruitment Process / Screening Interview
Detailed summary of the recruitment process and what to talk about during the screening interview with candidates.


Due Diligence Plan
How you carry out the board job description at board meetings.

Governance Self-Assessment
How effective is your board? Check out these standards. Use this governance assessment every year. Tabulate and discuss the results. Make improvements.

Nominating Committee Job
Nominating Committee is an old-fashioned name that doesn’t express the scope of work. Use Governance Committee or Board Development Committee instead.

Role of the board
This is the job description of a board, the concept of corporate governance. Personalize the vocabulary to your organization – but you can’t change the functions. This is governance, not personal opinion!

Advisory Bodies
I mostly don’t like them – especially advisory boards. Be careful. Read this article before you decide you want anything of this sort. And if you already have some form of advisory body, then read this article to make changes.

Board Member Performance Expectations: Version #1
Check out these performance expectations, which should be common to all board members. Remember, the board member is different than the board. The board does corporate governance, and that’s a group process. See Role of the Board. The individual board member is part of the group that is the board.

Board Member Performance Expectations: Version #2
I’ve organized the individual board member performance expectations differently in this example. And I’ve added a P.S. about small organizations that need board members to help do management stuff.

Board Chairs
Too many boards (and board chairs and even CEOs) don’t really understand the role of the board chair. Without a clear understanding, your organization may recruit a mediocre or lousy one. Unfortunately great board chairs aren’t all that common.

Effective staff enable board members to do governance well. And effective staff do the same with volunteers engaged in fund development. See my book, Strategic Fund Development: Building Profitable Relationships that Last, 3rd edition, for complete details about enabling.

Involving Your Board in Fundraising
Check out these tips. Listen to the Podcast that can help you train board members in face-to-face solicitation. Expand your board and board member involvement in fundraising.


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