The arrival of new Board members always brings a fresh burst of energy to an association.  These individuals, with their diverse backgrounds, skills, and new perspectives bring new life into Board meetings that might otherwise become stale.  In this article, I will explore the positive impacts new Board members can have on associations and how to harness their energy in a positive way while engaging current members.

Fresh Skills Lead to Fresh Ideas 

When new members join a Board, they bring unique skills that can complement those of existing members. These skills may include financial, marketing, technology, or industry insights. To incorporate these skills into the association’s objectives, a strategic and thoughtful approach is necessary. Start by identifying areas where the association could benefit from these new skills.

Fresh skills can lead to innovative and creative solutions. New perspectives and experiences can challenge conventional thinking and introduce new initiatives. Encouraging an open and inclusive environment where people feel comfortable sharing ideas is key to harnessing this energy. Brainstorming ideas in-person and through email can spark interactive conversations that may result in positive outcomes.

Engaging the Current Board 

The new Board members can bring new energy to existing members and can help to recharge their commitment to the association’s goals. Actively involving the new members in discussions and brainstorming sessions helps to give current Board members a renewed sense of engagement.  Engaging in such activities promotes cross-mentorship, enabling both new and existing members to exchange knowledge and learn from each other.

Make Collaboration Easy for New and Existing Members 

Encourage teamwork and collaboration among both new and existing members. Pair new members with mentors or “buddy” Board members who can help them adjust to the association’s culture and dynamics. Encouraging collaboration between different generations and functional areas can result in breakthrough ideas and innovative solutions.

Make sure that every member has access to all the resources, data, and information they need to make informed decisions. Provide continuous support and opportunities for professional development to help them advance in their position.

Developing Lasting Commitments

Building a strong and united team requires developing lasting commitment among both new and current Board members. It is important to review past commitments together and identify any unfinished tasks to understand the progress made. Collaboratively setting smart goals for the upcoming term is crucial to ensure a clear and measurable path to success. Assigning specific responsibilities to each member based on their strengths and interests promotes accountability. Effective communications and technology tools aid in seamless collaboration among the team. Recognizing achievements, providing training opportunities, and encouraging adaptability will contribute to a dynamic and motivated board. Constant monitoring of progress, addressing conflicts, and adapting, when necessary, will ensure that the association’s mission is achieved with confidence.

To encourage the long-term commitment of new Board members, it is essential to create an environment that is helpful and appreciative. Offering a thorough introduction to the association’s history, principles, and ongoing projects will aid in their understanding of the mission and enhance their excitement to contribute to the team.

Embracing Diversity and Inclusion

When appointing new Board members, it’s important to consider the benefits of diversity in the boardroom. This means seeking individuals with varying backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives, not just in terms of gender, ethnicity, and age. By embracing diversity, companies can create a more inclusive and creative environment.

Positive Change and Transformation

When new members join an association’s Board, they inject new energy that can lead to positive change and transformation. Their diverse backgrounds, innovative ideas, and unique skill sets can revitalize the boardroom and pave the way for a brighter future. By creating a supportive environment and embracing this newfound energy, the collective efforts of the board can result in sustainable growth and success.