Board Diversity and Inclusiveness…

who's on your board
Who’s on your board?

Shouldn’t be Illusive

If the make-up of your board in any way resembles the configuration seated around the table in the photo on the left – your nonprofit may be in trouble!

Diversity has become an adjective used in regard to the nonprofit sector board of directors for many years now, yet some nonprofit organizations still find themselves wondering how to be diverse and inclusive.

The following excerpts come from the Colorado Nonprofit Association’s P&P Planning Toolkit and demonstrates the importance of inclusiveness with regards to your organization’s continued success.

As the governing body of the organization the board of directors should present an example in its inclusiveness practices. Nonprofit inclusiveness means moving beyond diversity of ethnicity and insuring that the board is representative of the population the organization serves.

In addition, board members should value cultural competency, diversity, and inclusiveness as essential to advancing the mission of the organization.

Why is an inclusive approach so important?

  • Helps build both internal and external enthusiasm and commitment for the organization and its strategies. Individuals take ownership of the goals and efforts to achieve the stated outcomes.
  • Ensures that your informational database reflects the needs and perceptions of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Incorporates a level of objectivity into the process. “Outsiders” can identify jargon or ask critical questions where “insiders” might make assumptions.
  • Develops foundations for future working relationships.
  • Develops uniformity of purpose among all stakeholders.
  • Establishes a continual information exchange among staff, management, customers, and other key stakeholders.

Click here for the complete Colorado Nonprofit Association’s P&P Planning Toolkit .

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