Friday, January 20, 2012

Board Meetings

This is the week for the meeting of the Board of the American Christian Fiction Writers. This is my second year as Vice-President of the organization, and I must say that I've learned a lot. Unfortunately, just about the time we think things are running smoothly, our ship turns into the Titanic, and we're off again, bailing with one hand and wrestling the tiller with the other.

I've been on a number of Boards. During my years in medicine, I  served as President or Vice-President of each of our major professional specialty organizations. I've been Chairman of Deacons at a church. And wherever I've had the opportunity to serve in this capacity, I've come to believe in the truth of the old adage: A camel is a horse put together by a committee. Decisions are tough, and agreement is hard to come by.

Now, I'm writing this before our Board meeting, so I have no axe to grind (yet). But I can assure you that there will be some spirited discussion before decisions are made. And that's not necessarily bad. The only way for an organization to move forward is to consider all the options, some of which are so far out of the box that the lid won't close, then choose what appears to be the right one and don't look back.

And I hope that our organization--make that any organization--will never be guilty of being bound up by the complaint no CEO, President, or other person charged with leadership ever wants to hear: "But we've always done it that way."

Have you ever considered that you're actually the Chairman of the Board for your life? Do you just react to circumstances, or do you think about your actions and make careful decisions (some of them outside the box)? I'd like to know.


Anne Mateer said...

Bless you (and all the other Board members) for taking on such a task. My husband was on the Board of our little Christian school for 6 years and he was president for 3 of those years so I know what a huge commitment it is, not only of time but of mental and emotional energy.

Richard Mabry said...

Anne, Thanks. This has been a tiring week, and there are a couple more days left. Nice to know someone cares.