Why Volunteer as a Not-For-Profit Director | Alicia Curtis

Why Volunteer as a Not-For-Profit Director | Alicia Curtis

Being a board director of a not-for-profit
organisation, is a great way to serve the broader community, but it’s also one of
the best leadership development opportunities there is. Hi, I’m Alicia Curtis,
I’m a leadership facilitator. My business Alyceum facilitates both online
and face-to-face leadership programs, including programs to encourage
professionals to seek board appointments. I currently chair a not-for-profit
organisation, called 100 Women and I graduated from Curtin with a Master’s in
Business Leadership. So if you’re thinking of joining a not-for-profit
board here are my four tips to get you started. Number one, learn more about the
role of board director. You’ve got to understand the role of a board director,
within the structure of a not-for-profit organisation. It’s about providing
strategic direction, governance, accountability, support and being an
ambassador for the organisation. Number two, do the mission test first. Once you
start searching for the right board role for you, it’s about doing the mission
test. What is the mission of this organisation and do I wholeheartedly
believe in this mission? Can I stand up and be an advocate for this cause and
really promote what this organisation is doing? Number three, learn more about the
not-for-profit sector. If you’ve gone straight from school to university to
the corporate sector, you might not even realise how big their not-for-profit
sector is. The not-for-profit sector has its own conferences, magazines, online
resources and there’s unlimited information that you can find about this
third sector. Number four, think about the role. Every board is different and before
jumping into that first opportunity that presents itself, you have to do your due
diligence properly. How many hours a month will it take, what are they
expecting of you and what do you want from this role? Consider the future
direction of this organisation and whether it fits in with your skill set.
Understand the financials of the organisation too. You have to be ready to
take on that commitment. Being on a not-for-profit board gives
you the opportunity to be exposed to different challenges, tools and
frameworks. If you’ve chosen correctly, chosen the right organisation, it should
give you energy rather than take energy away, so well worth considering.

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