While it is unrealistic to expect all board members to contribute the same amount of effort at all times, you can remove some of the key obstacles to member involvement once you understand the underlying causes for non-performance.
1. Name what's happening. At the risk of getting too philosophical, the first step towards solving a problem is owning the problem. Try to describe the problem rather than insert judgments about what is happening. For example, comment that "Fewer than half of our board members come to board meetings" rather than stating "Half the board isn't carrying their weight." Some alternatives for taking this step include:
2. Try to understand the root causes. The best way to understand why people are acting as they are is to ask them. Ask individuals members in one-to-one conversations, what issues or conflicts they have that might inhibit their ability to meet their responsibilities.
3. Match the solution to the root cause. For the causes we have identified, you may want to try some of the following strategies: Click here to go to Why Board Members Don't Participate.
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