ShipShape Board Member Development

Good Board Members don't grow on trees...

But they do flourish in CNPE's ShipShape Board Development Series.

Whether you are a nonprofit leader seeking to enhance your Board's performance or an individual interested in or currently serving on a nonprofit Board, you will find value in the key insights and learning shared during the ShipShape sessions.

With just three evenings (and a bonus evening, if you're game) you can elevate your board, yourself and your organization.


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The new ShipShape series offers insights and key learnings that are proven to improve board member governance capacity. Sessions focus on critical topics including the Board's role in defining mission, vision, and values; generating critical resources to support the mission; and providing appropriate oversight that ensures organizational excellence.

ShipShape is led by CNPE Consultant and Former Director of Consulting Services, Eric Schmall. Learn more about Eric by clicking here.

CNPE offers the ShipShape series twice a year, giving interested individuals from across the region the chance to engage in what has become recognized as one of CNPE’s strongest education programs in developing competent and capable board members.

ShipShape Board Series Schedule:

  • Session 1: Setting Out Toward the Promised Shore – Values, Vision and Mission as Guides to Your Strategic Future. April 13, 2017 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
    • Target Audience:
      • All current board members or those considering board membership
    • Structure:
      • A nonprofit organization bases its reason for existence on three essential concepts: 

      1. Because we believe deeply in these principles ( Values), 
      2. We promise to bring about an improved world ( Vision)
      3. By acting in this way (Mission)
      • From this three-part foundation all successful nonprofits set and pursue their strategic direction toward reaching its ultimate success (achieving its Vision)
      • In this leading session, we will help you explore your values, vision and mission to insure they are clear , concise, and solid guides. We’ll they demonstrate how to craft a strategic direction that is faithfully rooted in these concepts.
  • Session Two: Catching the Trade Winds and Right Currents – Raising the Resources, Energy, and Tracking Results. April 27, 2017 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
    • Target Audience:
      • Primarily for those who have some experience in board service and want to learn how boards can become successful in fundraising
      • Board members who want to become clearer about their responsibilities in financial oversight
      • Board members who want to answer the eternal question: How do you measure success?
    • Structure:
      • Many nonprofit boards struggle with defining and then following through on their critical roles in helping the organization financially sustained. They also can be uncertain whether the ship is headed toward mission success. Here we will offer the proven methods that allow your board to transform itself into a successful team that can confidently deliver both financial support and set the course for mission success.
  • Session Three: Building the Winning Crew and Oversight Team. May 11, 2017 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
    • Target Audience:
      • Executive Directors, Board members,  and committee members who want to succeed through building a high performing team culture
    • Structure:
      • Governance demands a fundamental team structure. Real success in any organization relies upon talented people with complementary skills who are united by a common goal and hold each other mutually accountable for success. We will demonstrate how you can build such a culture for optimum performance with staff, boards, and volunteers.
  • Session Four: Commanders of the Ocean Sea. May 25, 2017 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
    • Target Audience:
      • Executive Directors, Board chairs, committee chairs, and senior staff who want sharpen their skills in leadership, management, and governance.
    • Structure:
      • A ship without a successful leader will drift away into oblivion. In order to bring all the ideas offered in Sessions 1-3 into coherent unity, we tie it all together in this session with one crucial key ingredient: LEADERSHIP. In this bonus session we will define the critically necessary leadership roles played by the executive director, board chairs, committee chairs, and other board and staff members to guarantee that the ship will succeed by achieving its vision.

REGISTER TODAY! and receive the special discounted rate of $195 Members/$295 Non-Members.

The Center for Nonprofit Excellence is committed to making training accessible. CNPE members needing scholarship assistance are encouraged to apply here.


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