by P.L. Grove

This is one of the questions I get asked as president of Handbell Musicians of America. My colleagues and I on the national board of directors have noticed that many of our members assume that the national board functions exactly like the area boards, but at the national level. 

P.L. Grove
National Board President

So we often find ourselves fielding questions about national events. And when we are at National Seminar, we find that our members have mistaken us for our national staff, our wonderful volunteer national event team, or the local liaison team. Why? Because those are the people who are in the trenches doing the work of putting on our events, and because that’s typically what the area board can be found doing at an area event. So, I wrote this article to help clear up a few things about what the national board does and does not do.

First, we do not organize our national events. We have a wonderful staff, a dedicated group of volunteers who have returned year after year to assist with our national event planning and execution, and a local liaison team that steps up every time in order to create a great National Seminar, our Distinctly Bronze events, and our College Ring-In.

So what do we do? The national board serves as trustees for the members of Handbell Musicians of America by:

  • assessing the organization’s needs
  • determining how to structure the organization’s long-term goals (we sometimes refer to this as “visioning”)
  • in some cases assigning budget amounts to various goals.

We do this under the guidance of Carver Policy Governance, which defines the board’s philosophy as to how we will govern; describes the board’s job and accountabilities; allows us to determine what needs are to be met and at what cost; and allows us to identify certain staff limitations and conditions. The organization’s policy governance documents are updated each year with the ends and limitations for staff for that year. The board monitors the executive director’s performance each year based on completion of the Ends and Limitation Policies. You can find a current copy of the policy governance documents in the HMA Governance section of the members only section of our website, handbellmembers.org.

In addition to monitoring and setting goals, the Board establishes and monitors volunteer committees to assist them in completing board-related tasks when needed. The national board meets face to face at least twice a year, holds monthly conference calls, and individual board members try to attend the National Seminar and local area events each year. Board members also are committed to listening to the members of the organization. While there may not always be an easy solution, we want our members to feel they can speak to us directly about their concerns.

Here are some new ways that you can interact with your national board in the coming year:

National Board Chats—Beginning in 2019, during each quarter, members will have a chance to chat with the national board via webinar. You can ask questions, discuss goals, and offer your ideas and suggestions for the future of Handbell Musicians of America. The four chats will be held on January 12, March 23, July 20, and October 26, and members should register to ensure a spot. Email a question or comment in advance to board@handbellmusicians.org, and if you can’t make it to the chat, all sessions will be recorded and available to members via the online Member Center.

Get to Know Us—We’re planning a “get to know us” section in future E-Notes and Overtones. So if you have a habit of skimming, now is a good time to take a closer look. Future articles will introduce each Board member, and you will have a chance to learn a bit more about us.

More Info on What We Do—Watch Overtones for more articles on what we do as a board. Over the coming year, our board will continue to inform you of our ongoing programs, awards, and committee work, as well as upcoming deadlines and how you can help.

By the way, if this article has you wondering who is on the national board, you are probably not alone. You can find a list of your board members along with a short bio on our web site at handbellmusicians.org/national-board-of-directors.

Don’t forget that our twice-yearly meetings are now summarized in a document that is posted on our website in the HMA Governance section of handbellmembers.org. We hope to see you in the spring or summer at an Area or national event. Please don’t be shy—come up and introduce yourself to one of us, especially if you have a question or an idea. We would love to hear from you!

P.L. Grove
plgrove@handbellmusicians.org

So we often find ourselves fielding questions about national events. And when we are at National Seminar, we find that our members have mistaken us for our national staff, our wonderful volunteer national event team, or the local liaison team. Why? Because those are the people who are in the trenches doing the work of putting on our events, and because that’s typically what the area board can be found doing at an area event. So, I wrote this article to help clear up a few things about what the national board does and does not do.

First, we do not organize our national events. We have a wonderful staff, a dedicated group of volunteers who have returned year after year to assist with our national event planning and execution, and a local liaison team that steps up every time in order to create a great National Seminar, our Distinctly Bronze events, and our College Ring-In.

So what do we do? The national board serves as trustees for the members of Handbell Musicians of America by:

  • assessing the organization’s needs
  • determining how to structure the organization’s long-term goals (we sometimes refer to this as “visioning”)
  • in some cases assigning budget amounts to various goals.

We do this under the guidance of Carver Policy Governance, which defines the board’s philosophy as to how we will govern; describes the board’s job and accountabilities; allows us to determine what needs are to be met and at what cost; and allows us to identify certain staff limitations and conditions. The organization’s policy governance documents are updated each year with the ends and limitations for staff for that year. The board monitors the executive director’s performance each year based on completion of the Ends and Limitation Policies. You can find a current copy of the policy governance documents in the HMA Governance section of the members only section of our website, handbellmembers.org.

In addition to monitoring and setting goals, the Board establishes and monitors volunteer committees to assist them in completing board-related tasks when needed. The national board meets face to face at least twice a year, holds monthly conference calls, and individual board members try to attend the National Seminar and local area events each year. Board members also are committed to listening to the members of the organization. While there may not always be an easy solution, we want our members to feel they can speak to us directly about their concerns.

Here are some new ways that you can interact with your national board in the coming year:

National Board Chats—Beginning in 2019, during each quarter, members will have a chance to chat with the national board via webinar. You can ask questions, discuss goals, and offer your ideas and suggestions for the future of Handbell Musicians of America. The four chats will be held on January 12, March 23, July 20, and October 26, and members should register to ensure a spot. Email a question or comment in advance to board@handbellmusicians.org, and if you can’t make it to the chat, all sessions will be recorded and available to members via the online Member Center.

Get to Know Us—We’re planning a “get to know us” section in future E-Notes and Overtones. So if you have a habit of skimming, now is a good time to take a closer look. Future articles will introduce each Board member, and you will have a chance to learn a bit more about us.

More Info on What We Do—Watch Overtones for more articles on what we do as a board. Over the coming year, our board will continue to inform you of our ongoing programs, awards, and committee work, as well as upcoming deadlines and how you can help.

By the way, if this article has you wondering who is on the national board, you are probably not alone. You can find a list of your board members along with a short bio on our web site at handbellmusicians.org/national-board-of-directors.

Don’t forget that our twice-yearly meetings are now summarized in a document that is posted on our website in the HMA Governance section of handbellmembers.org. We hope to see you in the spring or summer at an Area or national event. Please don’t be shy—come up and introduce yourself to one of us, especially if you have a question or an idea. We would love to hear from you!

P.L. Grove
plgrove@handbellmusicians.org

P.L. Grove
National Board President


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