Act in the Best Interest of the Association
Each year you will be asked to disclose any conflicts of interest that may exist between you, your business, and National Speakers Association (NSA) as an entity. By signing the document provided (see sample below), you are declaring any conflicts of interest thereby avoiding potential issues for yourself and the Association. Items to declare would include any self-dealing transactions (i.e. patents, trademarks, etc.), corporate opportunities, and maintaining of corporate confidences.
It is also imperative that you familiarize yourself with the structure of NSA to guide you in exercising independent judgment when making Board decisions. You have been elected to this position for the specific expertise you bring and NSA relies on you offering this knowledge in our day-to-day business transactions, development opportunities and growth.
Be a Liaison to Committees
Each year the president may assign various directors to serve as liaisons to those committees that do not have a Board member actively serving. Liaisons are asked to attend at least a portion of the committee meeting, as well as represent committee proposals and concerns to the rest of the Board.
Attend All Meetings
Members of the Board of Directors are required to attend all meetings of the Board. In the event a director cannot attend, they are to notify the president as soon as possible as to why they cannot attend. The president, in conjunction with the chief executive officer, will determine if the absence is excused or unexcused. Any Board member with two or more unexcused absences will be asked to resign their position (reference Bylaws: Article VI – Board of Directors, Section 6).
Monthly reports are provided by the management team on activities and actions that tie to the Strategic and Operational Plans. If you have questions on any of the items, ask questions until you have a clear understanding and feel comfortable that you have the most accurate and up-to-date information.
A Board agenda and supporting materials are provided at least seven days prior to each Board meeting. It is important to read and study the materials thoroughly. If you have a question, it is expected that you call the proposer or any of those listed on the proposal to ask clarifying questions. When you come prepared, everyone’s time is best served.
Stay Out of the Bug Dirt
According to the Bylaws, the National Directors are to set the direction, determine policies, rules and regulations. We call this “Strategic Thinking” – asking the fundamental question, “Are we doing the right things?” When the Board starts treading into tactical thinking (are we “doing it right?” – or “are we doing it the way I would rather see it done?”), we call it “getting into the bug dirt” – the details. We have an able staff to carry out the implementation!
Speak With Your Board Hat On
As a leader of this Association, you are now viewed as speaking on behalf of the organization, even when you don’t intend to. Be aware that when you attend NSA functions, chapter functions, or industry-related events, you are representing the Association; not only with what you do, but also by what you say. When commenting on social media platforms, keep in mind that your comments may construed to be representative of the Association.
Channel Member Issues and Media Inquiries to CEO/President
When issues come up from within the membership, defer your comments to the CEO and/or the President. Any media inquiries should be directed to the CEO and/or the President.