“IF YOU KNOW THE WHY, THE HOW IS EASY”
ELIE WIESEL, NOBEL LAUREATE
“Simplify, Simplify, Simplify”
HENRY DAVID THOREAU
COVID 19 AND NONPROFIT BOARDS
2020 WHY BOARDS MATTER 2020
THE NEW NORMAL IS AN UNKNOWN; HOWEVER, WHAT IS KNOWN IS THAT THE MYRIAD STRESSES IMPACTING EVERY PERSON IN EVERY NATION FOR A LONG FORSEEABLE FUTURE, DRAMATICALLY AFFECTS ALL NONPROFITS.
CULTURAL NONPROFITS, WITH GROUP INTERACTION AT MUSIC VENUES, MOVIES, THEATERS, MUSEUMS, GALLERIES AND INDIVIDUAL INTERACTIONS OF MUSICIANS, ACTORS, DANCERS, ARTISTS AT ART SCHOOLS, ART RESIDENCIES, ETC, ARE ASKING THE QUESTIONS ALL NONPROFITS ARE FACING FOR THE FUTURE, IN PROGRAMING, OPERATIONS, STAFF, COVID RETROFITTING, FINANCES, FUNDING ET AL.
IN THE BEST OF TIMES, IT IS HARD TO KEEP A NONPROFITS INSPIRATION, VISION, MISSION AND MAGIC UPPERMOST IN ITS CONSCIOUSNESS, IN THE FACE OF ALL OF THE COMPETING QUANTITATIVE REALITIES THAT CAN TOO OFTEN DROWN OUT THE QUALITATIVE VALUES THAT ARE THE NON PROFITS RAISON D’ETRE AND THE REASON TRUSTEES CHOOSE TO PARTICIPATE IN ONE INSTITUTION RATHER THAN ANOTHER.
WHY BOARDS MATTER WAS FOUNDED TO OFFER PRO BONO HELP TO NONPROFIT ARTS BOARDS / TRUSTEES TO STRENGTHEN THEIR COMMITMENT TO THE CORE VALUES OF THE INSTITUTIONS WITH WHICH THEY ARE ENTRUSTED. AS SOCIAL DISTANCING SHRINKS OR ELIMINATES REVENUES; AS THE NEED OF MANY WORTHWHILE ENTITIES FOR DONATIONS EXPANDS; AS THE COST OF ADDRESSING THE PHYSICAL NECESSITIES OF TRYING TO FUNCTION IN THE FACE OF A PANDEMIC INCREASE, AND BUDGETS ARE WRITTEN IN RED……IT BECOMES ALL THE MORE CRITICAL FOR NONPROFIT BOARDS / TRUSTEES TO TRULY UNDERSTAND WHY WE ARE ALL HERE ?
WHY BOARDS MATTER WAS CREATED SPECIFICALLY TO ADDRESS THIS FUNDAMENTAL QUESTION OF WHY WE ARE ALL HERE ? …..AS CORONA VIRUS MAKES THE GOING HARDER, KNOWING WHY WE ARE GOING, MAKES GOING EASIER.
OVER 50 YEARS AS AN ARCHITECT, PAINTER, AND TIBETAN BUDDHIST PRACTITIONER, AND OVER THE PAST 35 YEARS FOUNDING AND BUILDING THE NONPROFIT VERMONT STUDIO CENTER [ THE LARGEST INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS AND WRITERS RESIDENCY IN THE U.S. ] I HAVE HAD MANY WONDERFUL MENTORS AND HAVE SHARED THEIR WISDOM AND MY OWN EXPERIENCES WITH ASSISTING NUMEROUS ARTS NONPROFITS [ SEE LIST ] INFORMALLY. I CREATED WHY BOARDS MATTER TO BE OF SERVICE TO MORE BOARDS, IN A MORE STRUCTURED MANNER, ESPECIALLY IN THESE TROUBLED TIMES .
IF THE CONTENT OF THIS WEBSITE INTERESTS YOU, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME.
WHYS AND HOWS
Nonprofit boards are created to support the WHYS of inspiration, vision and mission of the organization they serve. While that is their primary responsibility, too often, over time the board’s focus slowly shifts from the WHYS of WHY ARE WE ALL HERE? to the HOWS of operations, management, finance, and development weakening the institution’s ability to truly fulfill its mission.
WHY BOARDS MATTER (WBM) offers the boards of nonprofit art organizations, institutions, and communities WHY ARE WE ALL HERE?, A PRO BONO DAY-LONG FULL BOARD FACILITATED DISCUSSION designed to recharge awareness of and commitment to, the Heart and Art of inspiration, vision and mission.
THE HEART AND ART OF BOARDS
While ideas about the HOWS of policy, finance and governance may vary between trustees, a shared commitment to the WHYS of the nonprofit’s mission is essential. This concordance of core values among the board, along with the core values of each individual trustee, is key to the spirit and success of the nonprofit.
THE HEART AND ART OF TRUSTEESHIP
The HEART of Trusteeship is to cherish the inspiration, aspiration, vision, ideals and mission of the nonprofit with which the board is entrusted and to keep those core values first and foremost.
The ART of Trusteeship is to balance that primary responsibility with the board’s responsibility for governance and fiduciary concerns, using the organization’s vision as a philosophical yet pragmatic guide for the financial health and success of the institution.