First, it needs to be said even if you don’t have time, if you have a lot of newbie board members, you need to make the time. If not the problems you have in the beginning will compound. But how do you do it when you don’t have any time?
Recruit for the Chamber You Want to Be
If you are fortunate enough to be able to recruit some of your board, keep an eye out for leaders who have the background to help you grow into the chamber you want to be, not just the one you are now.
Set Expectations Early
Even though your board is likely very experienced in business leadership, they may not know what to do in a chamber board role. Let them know very explicitly what their role entails and what you expect of them. If they have new member recruitment expectations let them know immediately and provide training on how they can turn conversations into membership conversions.
Find a “Joan” on the Board
If you ever watched the TV show Mad Men you may know Joan to be the office manager who knew a little about everyone and everything. She became a very valuable part of the team. Find a “Joan” on your board who can help communicate to the board and speak their language. S/he will be a confidant who can help you predict the “weather” of the board’s feelings.
Train or Recruit a Board Expert
It helps to have someone who understands adherence to by-laws and other board formalities. If you don’t have one, train one. It will save you time.
Create Job Descriptions
Every board member should have an area of expertise and a job description. Just as you set expectations with the board take some time to find out their skills and talents so that you can assign responsibilities that fit. If you don’t have board members in those spots, having job descriptions will help guide the search.
If you need more time-saving suggestions on board development, download our free 10 Key Components of Ongoing Board Development.
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