How Board Meetings can turn your board members into donors

March 25, 2012

Posted in Management.

Bored by

Are your board members your most engaged, passionate donors and volunteers? If you’re like most non-profits, the answer is a “hell, no.” But in theory, they should be. Whose fault is it?

Think about this for a moment: If you have monthly board meetings, you will see these people 12 times this year. How many of your donors are getting 12 visits? How many of your donors are going to spend 12+ hours with you?

But most importantly, what is the difference in how those hours are spent?

Last week, a nonprofit I’m involved with had its annual meeting, with a board meeting that followed. It was a typical meeting – facts, charts, data, and reports. In other words, it was pretty boring.

But what if people looked forward to your board meetings, couldn’t wait to get there, and left feeling inspired and energized?

Earlier this month, I wrote about changing events into experiences, and the first place to start is with your board meetings. Think about these as donor-centered events, as engagement opportunities for the people who are closest to your organization.

Who could you bring to your meetings to help tell your story? Maybe a volunteer, participant, or one of your best donors?

Can you hold your meeting somewhere unusual to help get people out of the ordinary mindset? Make them get up and move, so they’re not just sitting in chairs the whole time.

What if you held the usual “reports and charts” part to 15 minutes, and spent the rest of the time working creatively on something fun? (I recently asked our camp board to brainstorm new themes for our camp weeks.) Or have them play a game?

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