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eNews from Lead Centre for Not for Profit Leadership: October 2018

Wednesday, October 03, 2018   Posted in: Newsletters By: Administrator With tags: newsletter, non-profit, leadership

It's time to 'sharpen the saw' - for Boards as well

by Garth Nowland-Foreman

There is a traditional American folk tale about a wood-cutter who was always in a hurry to cut down his quota of trees. This one day he was making no progress and was just getting more and more frustrated.

A stranger came upon him in the forest and immediately saw what the problem was, “Your saw is blunt. That is why it is making no progress in cutting down the tree.” The wood-cutter replied that he knew, but he didn’t have time to stop and sharpen the saw, as he would have to stop sawing, and he had a tight deadline. So he kept sawing with his blunt saw getting more and more frustrated, until he collapsed exhausted from his effort still having made no progress at the end of the day.

As non-profits, we often see investing in our own training and development as a luxury, that we may never have time or money to get around to – oblivious to the fact that if only we ‘wasted’ some time and money and effort on ‘sharpening the saw’ we may actually be more effective in achieving our goals – and be less exhausted at the end of the day. This is especially so with investing in our own leadership development – and no different for the ultimate leaders of any non-profit – our board members.

In non-profits, we need to have a plan and be as prepared to invest in our board members’ leadership, as for our manager or CEO.

Boards may be among those who are paid the least, and spend the least time around the organisation, but that doesn’t diminish in any way that it’s with the board that our accountability and leadership ‘buck’ stops. In non-profits, we need to have a plan and be as prepared to invest in our board members’ leadership, as for our manager or CEO.

Chait, Ryan and Taylor (2005) identified the need to reframe the work of non-profit boards as leadership. It’s not enough just to be clear about allocation of roles; boards need a clear purpose and to be working on ‘what matters’ in a non-profit.

Continue reading this article from Garth Nowland-Foreman.

Getting on Board:  Non-profit Governance 101

"WHOAAAA...! What am I meant to be doing?" Join Garth Nowland-Foreman in Christchurch for a workshop for people who find themselves on a non-profit board. Informative and practical training on the ins and outs of not for profit governance, including the roles and responsibilities of board members, legal obligations, risks, and how to add value as a board member. You will get a hands-on experience of useful tools and processes to help deepen the governance practice of your organisation.

Date: Thursday 25 October 2018.
Location: Avebury House (Richmond).
Cost: $225 plus GST per person.

Register today for this governance workshop - scholarships are available.

changeXchange website: Trading for the common good

by Lindsay Jeffs

2018 is shaping up to be a great year for those of us in the community development and social enterprise space. More and more organisations are investigating a social enterprise approach to help with funding and deliver more to their community.

Which is why I’m pleased to announce that over the past 12 months, we have been working in the background to establish a website to help promote your organisation:

Myself and a team of people embarked on changeXchange to highlight and promote social enterprises.

Social enterprises are businesses that trade to achieve a social, environmental, cultural or local economic development purpose and reinvest most of their profit into the community or other community causes. This promotion of social enterprises will be to consumers, businesses or government looking to buy responsibly in New Zealand.

I would also like to extend a warm invite to you to sign up on changeXchange. But first, you’ll want to know how it can help your organisation and social enterprise...

Read out more about changeXchange.

Got a burning issue when it comes to Governance?

Garth Nowland-Foreman - your Governance Guru - is here to answer your questions and put out fires.

Email your question to Garth (garth[at] - put "Governance questions to the Governance Guru" in the Subject line.

LEAD Centre for Not for Profit Leadership: Skills, knowledge and confidence to lead and create change.

Come join our Learning Community of not for profit leaders on Facebook.

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