We hear a lot about giving back and making a difference. One way is by taking a board seat at the helm of a company, non-profit or an association that is important to you.
In a recent article entitled Preparing for a Board Seat, that appeared in Smart Business, I talk in detail about how to effectively prepare for your board seat and how to make the most of your experience.
There are a variety of benefits to serving on a board, not the least of which is the opportunity to network and increase your own personal brand as a subject matter expert in your field. However, every board seat comes with an implied commitment.
Board Seat Commitments
Board seats rely upon commitments critical to the company that you serve. Companies look to you for your expertise, investment, and perspective. If you offer your services as a board or committee member, you need to follow through with active participation, since many depend on you. If you are limited in time, but still want to help, schedule time with the executive director or president to identify mutually beneficial roles. A common rule of thumb: It’s better to under promise and over deliver.
This is true for all types of business networking opportunities. You’ll gain far more from your participation in a local chamber if you do more than just attend the monthly lunch. Actively participating in an event, on a committee or on the board provides a number of benefits, too.
Benefits of joining a board:
- Exposure to new people and ideas
- Opportunities to build deeper business connections
- Education – learning first hand, a different set of skills from your regular work
- Demonstrating your knowledge to others
- Gaining trust within the other board members
For more information about the benefits of having a board seat on a non-profit, check out my interview with Elizabeth Hosler Voudouris, Executive Vice President of BVU, who offers seven key focus areas for board members.
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