10 Tips for Successful Board Recruitment

  • Have a real job description – not just a list of responsibilities
  • Maintain a current, strategic profile of what you have and what you need in board members and maintain the board recruitment process all year long
  • Share as much information as possible and honestly during the recruitment process
  • Conduct real interviews with each candidates; not just tours or social presentations
  • Don’t go begging – make it a selective competitive process to be invited to your board so that service is seem as as an honor and a privilege
  • Check references or at least make service on one of your committees a prerequisite for board service so you can witness for yourselves how the person works — does he/she follow-through on promises, is she/he accountable, play well with other?
  • Make it clear to the candidate why you want him or her — what is it in the person that you value and want and need on your board
  • Do not hesitate to say no, thank you, if you determine this person isn’t right for your board right now; you should have committees on which that person can serve instead
  • Let a candidate know up front what the expected time commitment is, including meetings, work done in between meetings, how much the expected give is, whether volunteering is an expectation, etc.
  • Don’t make your organization look better – or worse – than it is. Give an accurate picture of the organization, warts and all, what is on the horizon.  In other words, share the strategic plan with the candidates.
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