All of what happened in college was strange to me, but after that I knew I could accomplish anything I set my mind to. When I joined Bell Labs and later went to graduate school with some of the best minds in the country, I found I could compete well with anyone.
19. You probably know other individuals who have sage leadership talents and skills but are not currently involved in the civic life of our community. Why do you believe they choose to be uninvolved? What, if anything, might be done to get them engaged?
Some are just self-centered and never take their heads out of the foxhole unless it involves self-interest. Others don’t know how to get involved, and when I find this I try to enable them. Still others have a lack of confidence; they simply don’t think they can do what is required.
What to do about this challenge is a different issue, and I really don’t have answers. We have a lot of people engaged in our community, a huge number. But of those, many who are engaged don’t want or aren’t able to lead. One of the reasons is that many in our community and nation don’t understand governance and are not engaged in it. Most forprofit and nonprofit boards also struggle with this problem.
We simply have to find ways to help people understand what being part of a team is about and how to become an effective team member. Maybe if people could learn to do this they will come out of their foxholes. And this, in part, is why I believe the Center for Nonprofit Leadership (CNL) should offer an annual workshop on the basics of what being on a governing board involves. Maybe that is a place to make a difference.Download Article 1K Club