Bad Board Seats

Aspiring Board Directors, Take Note: Avoid These Three Types of Board Seats! When starting your board career, it’s essential to make wise choices that align with your experience and goals.

Here are three types of board seats you should steer clear of initially:

  1. Small Not-for-Profits in Fringe Areas: While supporting nonprofits is admirable, joining a small organization in an underfunded, fringe area may overwhelm you with limited resources and unique challenges, especially if you’re new to board service. Opt for more stable organizations to build your foundation.
  2. Completely Refreshed Boards: A board with no experienced members can be a breeding ground for chaos and uncertainty. As an aspiring board director, you need the guidance and mentorship of seasoned directors to learn the ropes effectively. Look for boards with a mix of experience levels.
  3. Boards Out of Your Depth: Board roles in complex situations like business turnarounds require extensive experience and expertise. Jumping into such a challenging environment prematurely could harm both your reputation and the organization. Gain more experience in less demanding roles first.

Instead, consider:

  • Joining Established Boards: Look for organizations with a track record of success and stability. These boards offer a more supportive environment for beginners.
  • Seeking Mentorship: Connect with experienced board directors who can mentor you and provide valuable insights as you start your journey.
  • Professional Development: Invest in training and courses related to board governance to build your skills and knowledge.

Remember, a strategic approach to building your board career will lead to better long-term outcomes. Start with roles that match your current experience level and gradually work your way up as you gain confidence and expertise.