While I doubt you hear this specific question (“What’s in it for me?”) from prospective board members, more often than not I believe people wonder this when something is requested of them. Perhaps it is phrased as “Why should I do this?” in their minds, but it is natural to ask themselves this just the same. In my last blog,  I mentioned some benefits board members can receive as a result of board service. Here are some more!

American Express and VCG, Inc. did a joint study and found that serving on a nonprofit board contributed to leadership development. They found that nonprofit board service helped people build the following leadership competencies:

  • Thought leadership – study participants strengthened their abilities to create innovative solutions, shape strategic visions, and think conceptually.
  • Results leadership – participants demonstrated more initiative, the application of management expertise, and more actively pursued learning and development opportunities.
  • Relationship leadership – participants improved collaboration competencies, influencing and negotiation skills, and their ability to leverage their networks. In addition, they demonstrated that they valued diversity more and, where applicable, were better able to attract and develop talent.

If this doesn’t make the case for nonprofit board service, I don’t know what will!! What are your ideas for how you could use this in recruiting board members? Or- for some other purpose related to your board? How does knowing this influence you?