On Thursday, we presented the first opportunity for nonprofits to get involved with our work. So many nonprofits are eager to improve the diversity of their boards, but, as we stated that afternoon, there are no shortcuts. There’s so much more work to be done.
We believe that improving diversity constitutes a major change to an organization’s processes and culture, so the best practices of change management apply. That’s why the first step is to assess how ready an organization is for change, specifically how ready it is to invite a new person of color to their board.
The standard recruitment strategy of “looking for names” does not apply when seeking people of color, because there is so much to prepare for before that person is contacted. Among the questions to consider: Do you have board members who have little contact with professionals of color? Does your board meet in places that are foreign to people of color? Does your board recognize the multi-layered role that a person of color must play on your board? So much to prepare for….
As a first step, we are inviting nonprofits to send at least two representatives to participate in a Nonprofit Board Inclusion Assessment. The Assessment will enable individuals to get a glimpse of their board’s readiness and share their experience with their peers.
We’re excited about this opportunity to get a snapshot of where nonprofit boards stand in being ready for diversity. Stay tuned for more information and the application.