Streamline - Summer 2013 - (Page 23)

SUBMITTED BY BOB GAY, CIRCUIT RIDER II When many folks serve on a board for the first time, they tend to notice little things that can be changed in order to adapt the operation to their individual needs and desires. This article originally ran in StreamLine Winter 2003. How is Serving on a Board of an Organization like Owning a Car? There are some comparisons that are relevant and should be understood in order to do both properly. Don’T LAUgh yET! When many folks drive a new car for the first time, they tend to notice little things that are different from that which they are accustomed to and may have the idea that some changes should be made to adapt to their individual needs or desires. When many folks serve on a board for the first time, they tend to notice little things that can be changed in order to adapt the operation to their individual needs and desires. Let me state up front that your car is yours to make changes as you please, other than answering to your spouse, the laws and maybe the finance company. As a board member for an organization that has a clear mission statement, you will have many more things to consider before making changes. Generally you alone get to decide when and where your car will go, how and when it’s serviced, and how much you can and want to spend on changes. You even get to do the driving. While on a board you are part of a group that decides where your manager will take your organization, how it gets there, when it should be there, but the manager should do the driving. The board pays a professional, in the form of a City Manager, Town Manager or Executive Manager to take the organization to its destination and herein is my main point. The sign at the shop entrance to your local garage that states, “Customers not allowed in shop area” has more than one purpose. It satisfies some of the concerns of the liability insurance and also keeps the car owner out of the way of the paid professional mechanic so that he/she can do, in a more efficient manner, the job that he/she is trained to do. When a board member understands what his/ her role as a board member involves and lets the professionals do their job, only then will the organization continually achieve the goals dictated by its mission statement. Other approaches can and will lead to disruptions and delays. It is human nature for a board member with interest, concern, and dedication to try to help steer the organization, but restraint must be exercised at all times. Generally the board member regardless of knowledge and experience must assume the role of a novice and leave the steering of the organization to the paid professional. There are many reasons that this concept should be followed, but one of the main considerations is that the board member has other responsibilities and needs to utilize his or her time setting policy and providing vision so that the paid professional continually knows and understands the overall mission and direction of the organization and therefore has the tools to do the steering. A dedicated board member that understands his/her responsibilities and puts forth sincere effort to fulfill those responsibilities in a Board/ Team environment probably will not have time to do the steering for somebody else. www.vrwa.org 23 http://www.vrwa.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Streamline - Summer 2013

From the President
From the Executive Director
Generators – Learning from the Past
Does the End Justify the Means?
Clean Out Your Medicine Cabinet!
How is Serving on a Board of an Organization like Owning a Car?
Monitoring Master Meters
2013 Conference Highlights
OilClean from EcoSolutions Naturally Separates Oil from Water
Choosing a Rate Analyst
Ergs, Joules and Other Stuff
Snug and Smug with Solar Power
Fresh Faces: Joey Fagan
Wastewater Math
Throwing My Loop
eLearning Benefits
Membership Application
Do You Know What Your VRWA Benefits Are?
VRWA Mailbag
Welcome New Members
Training Calendar
Board of Directors
VRWA Committees
Index to Advertisers/Ad.com

Streamline - Summer 2013

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