Getting started with recruiting Board members
How to recruit board members
Finding the right board members is not easy. Getting rid of the wrong board members can be even more difficult. Governance Mandates can help with both problems.
First, we offer you a very cost effective way to advertise your board vacancy. Simply fill out the vacancy form to will ensure your advertisement includes all the necessary elements. As soon as you publish your vacancy all registered candidates with an interest in your vacancies will be alerted and they can apply with one click.
Secondly, use our supplementary guidance on how to recruit strategically and select the membership type that includes the relevant online course. Our online, on-demand course guides you step by step, with templates and samples, through the entire recruitment process from developing a board profile, a competency matrix, a candidate profile, and to the advertising, shortlisting, interviewing, appointment, and induction process.
The clearer you, and your candidates, are on the competencies you seek, the industry experience or subject matter you require, and extremely importantly the values that you and your organization have decided upon and the ethos and culture you seek to build, the better the fit will be. Part of your culture, interview process, service agreement, board charter, and even bye-laws should be the understanding and requirement that every board member will be evaluated and the best interest of the organization will always prevail.
Be sure to recruit the best
Beware of just relying on your existing network. We all have a natural bias to give preference to the most recently encountered and the familiar. But that may not be what you actually want or need. Compare the Governance Mandates candidates with those that learn of your vacancy by other means and do a side-by-side comparison.
Your aim should be to have the clearest possible advertisement that is seen by as many relevant candidates as possible, that all the candidates with the right profile apply and from which you can then create a strong shortlist.
Such a process is common and natural across all mature and well-governed organizations - irrespective of type and sector. You need to avoid persons who are overly keen and apply to positions even though it is not clear what is expected - this may indicate that they are mainly self-interested and want to use to position for their private gains. Within the Caribbean this process is not well developed in many cases:
- in the private sector, there is a bias to only focus on their network or hire recruiters and rely on their network;
- in the state sector, with the influence of political patronage and corruption, the lack of transparency and rigour are seen as the natural and immutable order of things;
- in the civil society and non-profit sectors, finances are so tight and governance processes often so poorly developed that rigorous profiles are not developed and finances are unavailable to advertise in the traditional media or to use recruiters.
There are three big challenges you need to overcome:
- Understand and convince your colleagues that advertising your vacancies the right, proper way, and there is no risk involved. Advertising does not replace your network and you can also nominate persons from it. If you are leading the process for a Ministry it should be clear that the Minister and whoever else can also introduce candidates from their network. However, the more public the role, the more public the advertisement should be. Many countries recognize this fact by legislating that this public notification is mandatory. Governance Mandates provides the means to advertise professionally and cost-effectively! There are no risks and fees are set so low as to not to become an obstacle but still indicate that this is a serious and professional vacancy posting.
- Once you decide to go public you need a profile - creating the profile on Governance Mandates is the easiest way to achieve that.
- Once you have candidates you need to evaluate them and ensure fit. Governance Mandates provides you with all the right categories of information to compare candidates and provides guidance for the interviewing and selecting of members.