Ridiculous puns aside, this week’s suggestion of how you can change the world is to join the governance board of a nonprofit. This is something I haven’t given much attention to on the blog because it doesn’t fit with my current stage of life. However, for those able to do it, this is one of the most impactful and influential ways to become involved in a nonprofit organization. Being on a board basically means that you are a volunteer, donor, and executor of an organization all rolled into one. Any healthy nonprofit wants diverse, independent, active, and generous board members. Usually, being on a board requires a very substantial donation, as well as some expertise (that is why virtually every board has at least one accountant or banker and one lawyer). The board carries fiduciary responsibility for the organization, which means it is their collective responsibility to make sure that the nonprofit is following all laws and fulfilling its charitable mission. Being a good board member is also a major time commitment, as you will be volunteering your time as well as advocating on behalf of the organization.
In spite of all of the commitment it requires, however, everyone I have talked to that serves on a board of a nonprofit, which turns out to be quite a few people, have found it an enriching and beneficial experience. Not only do they get to become personally invested in an organization they truly care about, but they get to be a decision-maker when it comes to the direction of an organization. It is really a win-win.
So, if you are a professional looking for a way to step up your involvement in the community, consider joining a board. If you do not already have an organization you are passionate about, many nonprofits use the website BoardMatch in order to find active and invested board members. Check it out!