The Pros and Cons of Becoming a Nonprofit Board Member
Serving on a nonprofit board of directors can be an incredibly rewarding experience, but it also comes with its own unique set of challenges. In this blog post, we will discuss the pros and cons of being a nonprofit board member, as well as some general guidelines for how much time you should expect to spend each week. Dig deeper into the roles and responsibilities of nonprofit board members with our free courses on Nonprofit Board Essentials.
The Pros of Board Service for Nonprofits
Board service should be rewarding, but it can also come with its own set of challenges. The list below outlines some benefits you may experience if you choose to join a nonprofit board:
Enhanced Leadership Skills - Serving on the board will give you an opportunity to take your leadership skills and abilities to new heights. You'll learn how different types of people work together in order to achieve common goals; this skill is essential when running any organization or business venture.
Greater Community Involvement - Your involvement in local community events will help build stronger relationships between residents, nonprofits, businesses, schools, etc., which helps develop great ideas that often translate into better results for all parties involved! Whether you choose to get more involved in the community by sitting on a nonprofit board or simply volunteering for your favorite cause, you can rest assured that you will be making valuable contributions.
More Knowledge about Your Preferred Cause - Serving as a board member of an organization gives you access and insight into issues affecting many communities. When you join the board of any nonprofit, its mission and goals become much more clear; this is especially important when trying to assess if your time would best be spent elsewhere. As we've mentioned before, nonprofits are doing great things all over the world, so it's always worth exploring other opportunities!
Taking On This Responsibility Requires Time (and Lots of It)
There is no denying that serving on a nonprofit board comes with some great rewards, but it also requires a great deal of time and effort on your part. The following list outlines some general guidelines for the amount of time you should expect to spend each week:
Meetings - Nonprofit boards typically meet once or twice per month; however, depending on the size and scope of the organization, this number could vary widely. Some meetings may take place via conference calls instead, which means there is no need for everyone to physically gather together! If possible, try attending in person whenever possible as these sessions will provide valuable face-to-face interactions that can often lead unexpectedly into new opportunities for collaboration overall.
Committees - Depending on how active the board deems necessary during any given period (such as fundraising season), you may be required to serve on a committee or subcommittee. Committees work together in order to achieve certain goals and come up with new ideas that will benefit the entire board, so try not to shy away from participating even when it seems daunting at first!
Volunteer Activities - Board members are expected to take part in volunteer activities aimed at helping out local communities whenever possible. For example, a nonprofit focused on improving literacy rates within schools might organize events such as book drives for underprivileged children during summer breaks; many community service projects often have specific guidelines for how much time each person is allowed to contribute before being asked back again (i.e., "we ask all volunteers who wish to help us plan this event over spring break attend this meeting on September 15th", etc.).
Tasks - The board of directors is responsible for overseeing all activities and helping to ensure the organization's continued success. This means that tasks such as approving budgets, organizing fundraising activities (both large and small), consulting with management about any areas needing improvement or clarification, researching new opportunities for collaboration between other nonprofits, etc., will need to be completed at some point! Remember: there are many members on a nonprofit board who may not have day jobs; their time should be spent wisely. That said…
Long Term Benefits Ensure Success
As we've already mentioned above, serving on a nonprofit board offers great rewards in exchange for your hard work and dedication over time! When you choose to put your skills to use by serving on a nonprofit board, you will be in direct contact with people who are also passionate about similar causes. Whether your skills include networking or fundraising, there is an organization that can benefit from the unique talents and abilities each member brings to the table!
Serving on a nonprofit board offers great rewards in exchange for your hard work and dedication over time. When you choose to put your skills to use by serving on a nonprofit board, you will be in direct contact with people who are also passionate about similar causes. Whether your skills include networking or fundraising, there is an organization that can benefit from the unique talents and abilities each member brings to the table. But serving on a nonprofit board requires a dedicated investment of time and (in some cases) financial support. If you are considering joining a nonprofit board, take a few minutes to explore our free Board Member Essentials courses.