Transform Your Board by Andrea Kihlstedt,  March 30 2011 (New York, New York)

It’s tempting to berate board members for not doing their part in fundraising. “My board just won’t ask.” is an all too common refrain. Susan Howlett, in her book Boards on Fire doesn’t castigate board members for being ineffective. Rather, she describes eleven barriers to fundraising and outlines the things an organization can do to remove those barriers.

By the time I finished reading Boards on Fire! I was convinced that the suggestions in this book could help transform the members of any board into willing and effective fundraisers. And that’s no small accomplishment!

Simply by doing things like clarifying commitments when recruiting board members, helping board members understand the broader community context in which their organization operates, and finding a way to have board members internalize the organization’s mission, you can inspire your board members in a way that will help them get over their resistance to fundraising.

This book reminded me that board members don’t shirk their fundraising duties because they want to, but because they aren’t well prepared to carry them out. Most people who agree to serve on boards would like to do their jobs well and by following the advice in this slim and appealing book, we can help them do just that.

Blissfully short, well-written and with many references to specific tools, Boards on Fire! is a great resource for any organization that is having trouble getting its board to fundraise.

A must have for any governing group by Carole J Jones, March 17, 2011

Wow. Our development team has used several books for guidance but this one really nailed it. Short topics that pack a punch really worked for us. It helped us bring our actions back to the reason we are fundraising–our mission statement. That alone brought the first burst of energy.

Excellent, easy-to-implement tips for inspiring boards to help raise funds by Shelley K Milne, December 28, 2011 (Bothell, Washington)

This little gem of a book is a quick read, yet packed full of excellent information, tips, and tools to help transform a fundraising-resistant board into an inspired one, ready for action. As a nonprofit consultant, I have utilized Susan’s suggestions with great success. In my opinion, every Executive Director should read this book at least once per year to beef up their board’s fundraising prowess.