[Excerpt from an article in Bizjournals.com]
Thinking about taking your career in the direction of board leadership one day? Maryann Bruce has some insights to share, based on her successful transition from senior operating executive of two Fortune 100 firms to independent director of several public and private companies.
1. Understand what board service entails, so that you can determine whether a director position would be a good fit for you.
2. Excel at what you do.
3. Make senior management of your organization aware that you’re interested in being on a board.
4. Get published.
5. Network at every opportunity.
Bruce adds, “Joining a nonprofit or industry association board is a good first step to acquiring the experience and enhancing the skill sets required for board leadership. Choose causes that you’re passionate about, and keep in mind that nonprofit boards tend to be less structured than corporate, private and private equity boards.”
What should you bring to the table?
Your expertise tops the list of desirable qualities for board service. But boards look for much more, Bruce says. She recommends cultivating the following:
Integrity and accountability.
Strong communication skills.