Nonprofit boards rely on collaboration for their effectiveness. They collaborate with staff members and committee members to carry out the nonprofit’s mission. The dynamics of the board can promote or hinder collaboration.

A nonprofit CEO told me of a board team with a history of mistrust conflicting interest, mistrust, and fighting. The executive director of the board brought in an expert who helped bring the group back on course. She asked the chairperson of the board to engage in candid discussions with the group. The chair reluctantly agreed.

The consultant noticed that the chair was a favorite and had a close relationship with a subset of the team. She also noticed the chair’s inability to communicate effectively, and her lack of understanding on how to build trust within the group.

Boards can facilitate the development of a collaborative culture by ensuring that new and existing board members are ready for it. As you onboard new members, make sure they are ready to take part in a cooperative culture by introducing them with other what is a board portal board members and giving them the opportunity to work in small groups with organizational staff prior to the initial meeting. This will help them become familiar with the organization and its leadership and help them build beneficial connections. Make available resources to encourage collaboration among members, like an online portal for board members. This will allow board members to communicate with each other in between meetings. Additionally, organizing events like a board retreat or similar gatherings can help foster camaraderie and encourage a sense of collaboration.

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