10 Questions Every Board Should Be Asking

I've been thinking a lot lately about nonprofit leadership. I am on two nonprofit boards and also consult with nonprofits on areas of planning, board development and fundraising...attempting to help them create new and powerful story endings.

My premise for boards is that "the quality of the questions asked will be THE determining factor in how successful the organization will be."

Here are a few questions that I believe every board should ask themselves...and if they did, their organization would be a much healthier and high impact place.

What is the board doing to:

1. Create a culture that fosters trust, progress, transparency and excellence between itself, the leadership team (including the CEO), and its key stakeholders?
2. Educate itself and engage in its fundraising efforts (fundraising, communications, alumni, parent, etc. networks)?
3. Annual do a board self-assessment process? If your board is not using an annual assessment process, what does this mean for how the board intentionally seeks to strengthen organizational governance?
4. Leverage its assets (real estate, invested funds, talented staff, relationships, etc.) to advance the organization’s mission?
5. Hold the CEO (executive director, principal, president) accountable to the institution’s strategic plan and key initiatives?
6. Encourage or equip the CEO to articulate why philanthropy matters?
7. Achieve the initiatives and goals of the strategic plan?
8. Continually use the institutional strategic plan to monitor progress?
9. Engage and/or collaborate with the key leadership groups (board, leadership cabinet, other stakeholders) to govern?
10. Create collaborations that advance the mission (attract quality programs and people, scale effective programs, save and raise money, etc.)?

I could argue that the board's most important task is to continually improve and strengthen itself. When  the board of directors disciplines itself to have conversations of this nature it cannot help but change it's story ending to be more powerful, meaningful and filled with hope. Merry Christmas!


This blog shares perspectives on how you have the ability to create new story endings that are meaningful, powerful and filled with hope. Is your organization needing to change its culture or create a transformation plan? That’s what I help organizations do…I facilitate culture changing processes that help organizations achieve greater impact. Also, I provide leadership coaching to help executives and aspiring leaders become the fullest expression of who they’re intended to be.

If you're looking for coaching or consulting services, contact me - brian@leadersedge.me