New Years Commitment 2016: Be An Active Board Member

December 10, 2015

Be an active board member.By Ana LaDou

This holiday season, make a commitment to both your community and yourself by being an active board member. You will make a positive impact, and it will give you the opportunity to grow both professionally and personally.

Here are five results you can achieve by giving your time and resources as an active board member:

  1. Be a leader. Opportunities for leadership might be limited in your job, and proving you can lead in a board position will increase your management and leadership skills.
  2. Get entrepreneurial work experience. Working with smaller nonprofits will teach you how to be successful in an entrepreneurial environment.
  3. Expand your network. Sitting on a board that supports a cause you care about ensures you will meet other like-minded people.
  4. Develop new skills. Participating on a board committee can give you the opportunity to develop skills in areas outside of your current expertise, like financial strategy and marketing.
  5. Be generous. Being generous makes you happier. Board leadership is about sharing your time and resources, and research proves that the more generous you are, the happier you are. Hello happiness!

Just like joining a gym, your results will be a direct result of your actions. Don’t just join a board, take an active leadership role.

If you’re already on a board, take the time during the holiday season to thank the leadership and staff who make the organization work all year long. Then send a note out to your friends, and ask them to give to your organization (and tell them why you give your own time and money). This way, you’re giving them the opportunity to join you in making a difference – and be happier.  You might even inspire them to join a board.

Ana LaDou is a nonprofit consultant focused on building leadership capacity. She is working with L.A. Works CEO Debbie Brutchey on developing their new Board Matching Program. For more information about joining a board or, if you are a nonprofit, to find talented board members, visit laworks.com.

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