A collaborative nonprofit board can be beneficial for your nonprofit, whether it is new struggling or just trying to make a difference. This type of partnership can help organizations gain a stronger voice by adding strength in numbers to their mission and expanding their reach to new audience. This type of partnership allows nonprofits to collaborate with experts in fields that they might not have much experience in. It also allows them to form stronger bonds with their peers and gain knowledge from experts in other fields.
Start by identifying the reasons the reason your company would like a collaborative board. This will help you determine which types of partnerships are appropriate and what the goals of your collaborations must be. This will allow you to define team expectations and guidelines. For instance, you could make group agreements to define clear guidelines on how the team communicates and collaborates during board meetings. You can enforce these rules by checking in frequently and recognizing success, such when a member of the team is exhibiting the behavior that was agreed upon.
Another important aspect of a cooperative nonprofit board team is having a clear grasp of the distinct strengths and weaknesses of each trustee. This can be accomplished through a thoughtful recruitment process and by conducting regular evaluations of the board as an entire. Then, you can utilize these results to guide the new members or put them on committees in which they will have an opportunity to succeed. Furthermore, you should push the entire board to play a role in collaborative projects so they are comfortable with the process and feel comfortable working together.