How to find Board Members for your New Nonprofit

How to Find Board Membrs for your New Nonprofit

So, you are a new nonprofit and need board members. Where do you start?  First, you are looking for people that have time to serve on your board and attend the meetings.  You are looking for people who are experts in different areas. You are looking for people with the ability to donate to your nonprofit.

The people that are recruited to your board must ensure the advancement of your organization’s mission right now and in the future. So, you must be strategic about who is targeted for your board because the board can make or break your nonprofit organization.

So, who do you need for your board that can help you?

Who to Get 

A program expert especially if you don’t have any staff. This person can help with program design, management, and evaluation.

A person of influence – we all know those people who everyone wants to know.  People you respect and admire. They have great influence in their industry with an excellent leadership track record. They are willing to actively exercise their influence for your nonprofit.

Someone with fundraising experience – you need someone with Knowledge about nonprofit fundraising which is one of the most important aspects of board service.   The more familiar they are with fundraising, the better they can understand the ins and outs of your operation and bring other board members along on the journey.

A marketing and/or public relations person – having an experienced marketing professional invested in your organization and mission can be critical.  Not only can they bring great value in thinking through how to build your organization’s reputation and brand they can also leverage their network of relationships to secure free expertise.

If you want to find the best people for your nonprofit board, you need to reach out to potential candidates in as many ways as possible. Relying on candidates to come to you, may mean you miss out on some of the best people.

Here are some steps you can take to invite leaders from the community you serve to explore their interest in board service.   

Where to Get them  

  1. Network at Chamber of Commerce & Social Club events i.e. Rotary, Kiwanis, Lions.
  1. Post your position on LinkedIn for nonprofits.
  1. Ask fellow nonprofits for recommendations. They may have great board members whose terms are expiring.
  1. Access local volunteer centers, state association of nonprofits, local United Way, or local community foundations.
  1. Look to your own volunteer base or donors to serve or make recommendations of community leaders who support your cause and may make a great addition to the board.
  1. Utilize online board matchmaking sites such as BoardNetUSA or VolunteerMatch.
  1. Recruit from local industry organizations such as the American Advertising Federation, Public Relations Society of America, or the American Marketing Association.
  1. Host your own board recruitment mixer.

These are just a few of the steps I have seen work well for my clients and that I have used during my nonprofit tenure.

I hope this helps. What other tips and tricks can you share to help with board recruitment?  Let me know in the comments. Sharing is Caring.

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