Today, I’m pleased to share with you a fun post by Simone Joyaux. Simone is one of the most provocative and insightful fundraising consultants I know. She is particularly good at working with boards and governance, so I asked her to write a piece in relation to her new book, Firing Lousy Board Members: And Helping the Others Succeed. You can read her latest thoughts at her blog:

And, Simone is giving a webinar for The Nonprofit Academy on December 9. Join the Academy to attend or to receive access to the recording!

Are you frustrated with some of your board members?

Simone Joyaux, Firing Your Lousy Board Memberby Simone Joyaux

Do you dream about some bad board members? Do you feel a flush of anger when you’re calling one more time to see if those board members did what they said they’d do? Do you wish your Governance Committee would talk gracefully confront the bad performers?

So here’s the bad news: Look in the mirror first. The problem may be your leadership.

And here’s the good news: You can help fix this.

Maybe your bad board members aren’t intentionally bad. Maybe they just don’t know what the job is. Maybe they don’t realize there is a difference between the board (the group that does governance) and the individual board member (that does the right stuff outside of board meetings).

  • Does your organization have a board-adopted policy that defines the role of the board and the performance expectations of board members?
  • Does your organization use a top-notch recruitment, screening, and evaluation process for board members?
  • And… Do you know enough to enable all this to happen?

On the other hand… Oh dear… Maybe you have a bad board member who is, actually, intentionally bad. The board member just doesn’t care what the expectations are. The board member is disruptive and doesn’t play well with others.

It’s a tough life. We all encounter people like this. So every organization needs a process to fire lousy board members.

Yes, there is a process. Yes, your organization can do this if it chooses to do so.

And you can help guide the process by knowing how to do it…and what to watch out for.

Let’s get it together. Lousy board members harm good organizations. Lousy board members make good board members leave. And none of this helps those you serve.

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