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Board Member

One of the most important leadership roles to consider to further your professional career and positively impact your surrounding community is serving as a board member of a growing company or organization.  Being part of a Board is one of the most critical roles that will determine the success of an organization.  Becoming a board member of an emerging tech or high growth company, or joining the board of the institutions that are charged to create such businesses is not only a great career move, but key to attracting larger numbers of ethnic minorities to the emerging innovation economy.  There are many characteristics that must be considered when participating as a member of a Board.  A board member must display effective leadership skills in addition to the following:

  • Integrity: Demonstrating a zero tolerance for unethical behavior, both for themselves and their colleagues.
  • Independence: Having no unique business, financial or personal relationships — or hoped-for-relationships — that create even the perception of a conflict of interest.
  • Mature Confidence: Speaking out and actively participating in board and committee deliberations.
  • Corporate Manners: Must be able to work with other members to create workable compromises.
  • A Sense of Context: Making relevant, informed comments focused on the specific aspect of the issue being considered. Must be able to stay on topic.
  • Courage: Willingness to do the right thing/make the right decision even if it is difficult or unpopular (i.e., no fence sitting).
  • Commitment: Understanding that being an effective board member requires the time, the heart, and the standards to make the enterprise successful.

In addition to the above characteristics of an effective board member, the typical duties of a Board of Directors include, but are not limited to:

  • Governing the organization by establishing broad policies and objectives;
  • Selecting, appointing, supporting and reviewing the performance of the CEO;
  • Ensuring the availability of adequate financial resources;
  • Approving annual budgets;
  • Accountable to the stakeholders for the organization's performance;
  • Setting the salaries and compensation of company management.

If you would like to get connected to board opportunities of promising businesses or leading organizations in the innovation economy click here to become part of the MSIA network of opportunities.