At this month’s Annual General Meeting of the School, our Chair of the Board of Directors shared a heartwarming and thoughtful list of the many reasons board work is both important and meaningful. I’d like to share it here, and to thank the volunteers who make it possible for our staff and faculty to do the work they love in the service of our students.
Top 10 reasons to join the Trafalgar Castle School Board:
- You will learn patience. A group of smart and passionate folks sitting around a conference room table can argue and pontificate. They can say stupid things and make the most brilliant observations. And you will learn patience to wade through it.
- You will learn how to ask for money. You did it when you were eight years old selling chocolates for your school, but the skill might have lain dormant since. Every grownup should know how to ask for money for a worthy cause. I’ll take it one step further. I’d argue that until you ask for money for a worthy cause, you have not reached “grownup” status.
- You will have an experience that enriches your resume. Okay, this one is a bit selfish but it’s true and it’s okay to be honest about it.
- You will meet interesting people who will add to your sphere of influence. People who join boards are a wonderful breed. They have chosen to get off the bench and onto the field. You will be enriched by being in their company.
- You will learn to play nicely in the sandbox. This is about diplomacy and making sure that your colleagues get their say (even if you think your comment said it all). The very best board members are teams.
- You will learn to appreciate that assets = liabilities. I mean this quite specifically. You will be able to read and understand financial statements and ask a related question or two that makes sense.
- You will have another excuse to skip the gym. (Just wanted to be sure you were paying attention.)
- You will learn how to run an effective meeting of people who don’t work for you. Perhaps you will find yourself as a committee chair. Trust me, you learn a very different set of skills. These fellow board members are volunteers, not paid employees, and they may have more business experience than you do.
- You will stretch all your intellectual and emotional muscles. Board service at its best allows you to bring your full self to the organization – your emotional connection to the work, your commitment to the independent school sector, your life experience, your skills and the good head you have on your shoulders. There are precious few tables you will sit at that will need all of what you bring the way a non-profit does.
- You will fall more in love with the School. The closer you are to the work, the more that work comes to life for you, the more passionate you will become. And you will feel another emotion. You will feel lucky.
Thank you to everyone who makes the Trafalgar Castle School community a special place to learn, work and grow in the spirit of sisterhood!