Community Futures
Leadership Institute
Board Development

Module contents

This page gives a detailed overview of each module. Click on the module heading to open the info window for each module. Clicking on the heading again will close the info window. You can open all info windows by clicking on "Expand All". To close all info windows click on "Collapse All".

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  • Module 1: Community Economic Development (1.5 hours)

    Community Futures plays a significant role in community economic development. Board members will:

    • Understand what community economic development is;
    • Discuss the objectives, principles and strategies of community economic development;
    • Explain the importance of community engagement and accountability in community economic development;
    • Distinguish how community economic development differs from other approaches to economic development and community development; and
    • Describe the role Community Futures plays in community economic development.
  • Module 2: Operations - Board and Staff (3 hours)

    Board members fulfill five major leadership functions: decision maker, advisor, trustee, perpetuator and leader. This module examines these functions and the critical principles underlying them. Participants will:

    • Distinguish between board and management authority and accountability;
    • Identify the relationship between board, management and the staff; and
    • Be aware of organization and structure of a board.
  • Module 3: Legal Responsibilities of Boards (3 hours)

    Board members need to become familiar with the legal environment that exists for non-profit organizations. Participants will:

    • Be aware of the legal framework within which they provide leadership;
    • Know where to find and apply the legal guidelines governing non-profit board of directors;
    • Identify the circumstances that create liability for directors; and
    • Review how boards can protect themselves against liability.
  • Module 4: Financial Management of a Non-Profit (3 hours)

    This module demonstrates the relationship between financial management and long-range goals that boards must establish. Boards must be able to set financial policies and evaluate their organization’s financial performance. Participants will:

    • Recognize roles in financial management;
    • Examine how to establish accountability for achieving the objectives set out in the board’s plans;
    • Identify the financial reports that are used to measure the financial performance of the organization; and
    • Review financial objectives and audits, and understand the role of the audit in maintaining accountability.
  • Module 5: Board Development and Performance (3 hours)

    This module examines the role and accountability of the board of directors. Board members must demonstrate leadership through commitment, integrity and teamwork. Participants will:

    • Examine the role of the board of directors;
    • Discuss the importance of board performance;
    • Examine on-going development for all board members; and
    • Understand the importance of a formal board assessment process.
  • Module 7: Management, Recruitment, Performance, Evaluation and Development (3 hours)

    The level of board member participation in recruiting and evaluating other management staff varies by non-profit organization, but in general these roles are the responsibility of the executive director. This module will help you:

    • Discuss management recruitment and selection process;
    • Describe the purpose of establishing an equitable compensation package which reflects labour market information and terms of remuneration and compensation;
    • Be aware of options board members should consider when they establish compensation levels for the executive director;
    • Explain a board's role in performance planning, evaluation, and development of its executive director; and
    • Determine how the board can use coaching and counselling to deal with performance concerns.
  • Module 8: Board Leadership (3 hours)

    This module allows participants to evaluate their skills as leaders in the capacity of a non-profit board member, and enhances their abilities as a strong leader. Participants will:

    • Recognize leadership as a fundamental responsibility of all board members;
    • Personalize the idea of leadership in terms of what a leader does;
    • Understand the three different modes of governance; and
    • Understand the principles of governance as leadership.
  • Module 9: Cultural Awareness (3 hours)

    This module delves into the landscape of Canada based on demographic changes resulting from immigration. Participants will be able to:

    • describe the cultural diversity of our country and communities as a result of immigration;
    • define methods of connecting and communicating with our whole community;
    • recognize and implement communication tools;
    • identify the board members’ and executive director’s role in exercising cultural awareness leadership;
    • identify actions the board and staff can take to becoming a culturally-aware organization and community; and
    • define a process for organizational self-evaluation.
  • Module 10: Social Economy and Social Enterprise (3 hours)

    Community economic development supports the social economy through building capacity within not-for profit organizations. Participants will be able to:

    • understand the concept of social economy;
    • clarify the links between community economic development and the social economy;
    • understand the distinguishing characteristics of social enterprises;
    • explore and define the role of Community Futures in the social economy; and
    • discuss how social enterprises can be financed.
  • Module 11: Role of Planning (1.5 hour webinar)

    Planning is essential to the non-profit organization. Participants will:

    • Describe the role of strategic and operational planning as part of the total planning cycle; and
    • Explain the role of the board in the planning process for the non-profit organization and the community itself.
  • Module 12: The Role of the Chair (3 hours)

    The chair plays an important role in a non-profit organization. The chair’s roles and responsibilities as they relate to the public, stakeholders, partners, funders, the corporation, board members and staff is examined. Participants will:

    • Learn how to approach the role of chair with skill and confidence;
    • Understand the roles and responsibilities associated with the chair’s position;
    • Discuss the specific skills required to be a chair; and
    • Examine how to support their chair and work together as a strong team.