8. Over Board

“Pigs in the Bay” Photo taken by me at Staniel Cay during my maiden bare boat voyage in 2017.

If the nonprofit you are considering leading does not have a board that is already recruiting new board members and fundraising then RUN.

I knew the board I inherited was… older… (everyone was 70+) and had all of only six members for a statewide organization and each member had been on the board for at least 10 years. However, I’m an optimist and believed that I could in fact turn this organization around and make it relevant. While I achieved that for one hot minute of the organization’s nearly 50 year history, I underestimated The Relics.

When new board members have no real nonprofit experience, the Relics can appear intimidating especially when techniques like gaslighting and bullying are utilized.

Here is an example of how dangerous these Relics can be… The Relics at my organization convinced the rest of the executive committee board members to give nearly all of my statewide nonprofit’s assets to an organization that did not have a 501(c)3. This move was to the extreme financial detriment (think nearly $750,000) of the nonprofit I was leading along with a heap of separation-related debt, meanwhile setting up the other organization (that had not even achieved 501(c)3 status) long-term financial success. This decision did not go to the complete board either and was made in the vacuum of the Executive Committee (EC). Also, I should mention that these Relics served on that other organization’s board and advisory board, which is a legal conflict of interest.

https://boardsource.org/nonprofit-board-orientation-checklist/
https://boardsource.org/nonprofit-board-orientation-checklist/

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store