Nonprofit Insurance Program

How to Find Nonprofit Board Members

By Alexa Connelly
February 03, 2014

When you work for or run a nonprofit organization, you’re likely working for a cause that you’re passionate about, and you probably want others to know how amazing your organization is, too.  Success often times starts from within, and the 501(c)3 world is no exception.  This is why finding nonprofit board members that fit your vision is imperative.  Here are some tips to help you with your search:

  • Find people that share your passion.  Fundraisers and board meetings can be tedious and time-consuming, so you’ll want to find people that believe in your cause as strongly as you do so they’ll be committed to the time it takes to make your organization successful.  Look to your volunteers and donors because you know that they’re already dedicated to you and the work you’re doing.
  • Diversify your portfolio.  It takes a lot of different skill sets to make any organization run smoothly.  Nonprofit board members should come from various backgrounds, so the ideas, opinions, and experience is as diverse as possible.  Local business owners can offer great insight as board members because of their business savvy, while area educators are often able to reach people on a more intimate level.  Together, all of the minds and ideas on your board should be different, because varying thoughts can help everyone bounce ideas off of each other to come to the optimal solutions.
  • Spread the word.  Different types of people use different types of communication channels.  By spreading the word through multiple channels, you’ll be reaching the most varied experience possible.  LinkedIn and Facebook are good starts.  Find events that will help you network with other professionals (LinkedIn is a great way to find these groups.  You could also look toward Meetup.com to see what groups in your area might share similar ideas).
  • Grow yourself.  There are organizations that are in business solely to help your own organization get better.  Some chapters of United Way, for example, hold courses that teach people how to be effective nonprofit board members then match them with organizations that are well-suited to their needs and skills.  Other companies and organizations may be in your area that are lesser known by name, but can offer you enormous rewards in terms of growing yourself and finding great people.

If you have other tips that you would be willing to share, please do so at our Nonprofit Insurance Program Facebook page!

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