Assessing the 'Fit': Using Competencies to Select New Board Members

By Mary Totten

Bringing new members onto the board has its challenges. In small or rural communities, the pool of potential trustees is often limited, with desirable candidates already serving on multiple boards. Even in bigger urban areas, it sometimes seems the same people rotate on and off the boards of larger community organizations — the Rotary Club, the chamber of commerce, the hospital.

Chairs of board nominating committees have been known to express frustration when they put out the annual call to other board members to suggest names of new people to serve on the board.It’s no wonder when meeting after meeting they remind their fellow trustees to suggest candidates and either get “the usual suspects” or even worse, little to no response.

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