Building effective and ethical nonprofits through
governance education, advising, and consulting.
As the calendar is turned to a new year, embrace the moment and resolve to address some important issues facing nonprofit boards of directors in 2018.
Should you limit how long someone can remain on your nonprofit board of directors? In William Meehan and Kim Starkey Jonker’s 2017 book Engine of Impact, the authors rightly address this question in the context of board member assessment. That is, term limits are really a way for an organization to shed itself of poor performing board members while side-stepping board evaluations. But requiring board member removal means losing benefits that long-standing board members can bring.
Good governance practices are associated with lower fraud occurrences and, if a theft or embezzlement does occur, a quicker recovery. That’s the finding of a trio of researchers who used four years of IRS Form 990s to test the impact of governance on nonprofit organizations’ ability to avoid and weather asset diversions.
The Wells Fargo fake-accounts scandal led to $185 million in fines, the resignation of CEO John Stumpf, and the firing of some 5,000 employees. In the midst of that fall-out, the company’s independent directors released the results of an internal investigation that provides food for thought for leaders in all types of organizations. Three lessons emerge for leaders seeking to prevent unethical behavior and encourage good decision making within their team, department, or company.