The task of building a nonprofit board involves more than just filling spaces at the board table. It requires being strategic about identifying and cultivating potential candidates so that the board will not be caught off guard when the time comes to elect new members — or when a pivotal board member suddenly departs. The Board building cycle also does not end with recruitment, but continues with creating and sustaining a culture of learning, engagement, and self-assessment that values the input of all members.

The most effective boards — those whose members are deeply committed to the organization’s mission and purpose, who bring expertise in key areas, and who represent diverse experiences, points of view, and cultural backgrounds — evolve over time and have a sustained focus on good governance.

The third edition of The Board-Building Cycle describes board building as continuous cycle with three interconnected phases:

  1. Strategic recruitment
  2. Effective board engagement
  3. Intentional revitalization

In clear, concise text for busy board leaders, it features BoardSource’s current thinking and recommendations regarding board composition and board member identification, cultivation, recruitment, orientation, engagement, evaluation, and rotation. And it introduces BoardSource’s new board matrix and other helpful worksheets and tools.

This book is intended not only for organizations where the board is charged with selecting its own members but also for organizations where the authority to appoint new board members rests elsewhere.