Need Some Skills as a Board Member?

By Beth Casebolt

Do you have new board members joining your leadership team this year? Do you have returning board members?

Board leadership in a UU congregation calls on a unique set of skills and attitudes. Not every person elected (no matter how enthusiastic they are!) comes to the work with a full sense of what is means to serve and the skills needed to serve well. Do all your board members have the skills they need to be a strong board member and not become frustrated? Not sure? We have resources to help!

Every year our staff offer Board Basics trainings in clusters around the region. These trainings are designed for both the newbie who has never served on a congregational board and your returning board members. Topics we cover include what makes congregational boards different from other kinds of non-profits or corporate boards, a governance overview, the role of the board member, how to manage dissent, and attributes of good board members. One other perk of the in person trainings is that you get an opportunity to learn with your fellow board members and to network with those from neighboring congregations. You can find the currently scheduled trainings on our calendar.

If you were unable to attend a training in your area, never fear, we do have other options for you.

The UUA LeaderLab has a 12 part training for board members that your board can do as a team or new members can do on their own. Each section contains a video or reading to illustrate the topic. There are many ways you could cover this as part of your normal board operations. You could assign a section for each meeting, then spend time talking about what you learned as a board during your meetings. If that sounds like it would add to a packed agenda, remember that some of the skills learned, such as consent agendas, are things that could shorten your agenda, allowing the room for this team learning process.

Last year we offered an online version of this training for those who were not able to attend one of our in person trainings. The videos from this three-part presentation are available on the CER YouTube Channel and in the sidebar.

Your regional staff wants your congregation's board members to have the best experience they can while serving on your board. So we encourage you to explore one or more of these training methods to get your board up to date with today's practices and procedures. Please reach out to your primary contact if you need help!

About the Author

Beth Casebolt

Beth Casebolt is the Operations Manager and Communications Consultant for the Central East Region. Prior to regionalization she served as the District Administrator for the Ohio-Meadville District, a position she held since November 2007. She is very interested in social media and website design.

For more information contact .

LeaderLab Other Leaders

Board Basics Webinar Part 1

Board Basics Webinar Part 2

Board Basics Webinar Part 3