Diverse board

Getting on Board – Call to Action on Trustee Diversity

Published : 31/07/20 | Categories: Information & support,

Getting on Board campaign to improve trustee diversity

The charity Getting on Board has published a report and call to action on trustee diversity We Need a Board Revolution

Lack of trustee diversity is a serious issue for many charities. The charity Getting on Board recently conducted research on how people of colour, women and under 30s view trusteeship. The findings were so striking that they decided to share the report.

Key findings included structural barriers to trusteeship, a perception that trusteeship is ‘someone else’s club’ and experiences of racism and tokenism. However, participants were motived to become trustees, wanted to find the right charity and spoke of the importance of mentoring and role models.

‘Breaking into a club filled with old white men.’ That’s how one participant in Getting on Board’s recent focus group described becoming a charity trustee.

The report includes a list of actions charity boards can take right away to recruit more diverse trustees. For example, they can recruit formally and openly, create targeted adverts, and avoid putting up barriers (e.g., specific experience and qualifications).

As trustees and senior charity staff, we have the power to change poor trustee recruitment practices. We can shift the composition of our boards. We can end closed recruitment processes. We can help our charities thrive by welcoming the broad contributions that a wider trustee base would bring.

Penny Wilson, CEO ‘Getting on Board’.

Why not start by having a discussion about diversity at a board meeting soon and make a commitment to some of the steps outlined in the Getting on Board report?

Join the discussion on social media with the hashtag #BoardRevolution

Related resources

Getting on Board has published a useful guide to support charities with developing an open, formal approach to recruitment, Trustee Recruitment Guide

Watch this interesting discussion about trustee recruitment from the Young Trustees Movement, Creating Trustee Role Adverts & Interview Processes

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