Almost ten years after sitting on my first corporate board, I continue to be asked questions about my path. At my last board meeting dinner in July, the COO of the company leaned over and asked me “how did you get on this board?” My answer was to the heart of the many questions swirling around this topic – that my industry reputation from my full-time corporate executive work had led me to this seat. One thing builds on another and small steps, good relationships and hard work leads to more opportunities.

We have been on a journey together exploring the Eight Steps to a Board of Director’s Seat. Similar to wanting to attain any goal quickly, such as fast fitness, the need for immediate gratification has been culturally programmed into us. The same need applies to business. The multi-tasking approach gets us into so much trouble, yet we tend to default to it over and over again. Have you been guilty of simultaneously starting an exercise program, modifying your diet and changing lifestyle habits? Did it provide a linear progression right to your goals? Instead, as the fall season begins, prioritize your steps to action. Don’t try to accomplish all eight steps at once. Bring a routine and a re-commitment to regular actions that best suits your situation for reaching a corporate board of director’s seat.

The Eight Steps to a Board of Director’s Seat

The areas we explored in this workbook included:

Step 1. Leverage Your Strengths and Experiences  

Step 2. Write a Resume Targeting Boards

Step 3. Connect with 12 Strategic Colleagues

Step 4. Reach Out to Executive Search

Step 5. Get Out and Foster Relationships

Step 6. Select Governance Executive Education

Step 7. Attend Professional Director Groups

Step 8. Resources and Final Comments

Additional Corporate Board of Directors Resources

Opportunity to post director candidate credential: Today you can begin registering your credentials on a New Diversity Database. The California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) commissioned GMI, the nation’s leading independent provider of global corporate governance and ESG (environmental, social and governance) ratings/research group, to develop a Diverse Director Database (3D) to house a group of diverse, prospective candidates for board of director seats.

Final Comments

Thank you for joining me on this journey. The scope of this workbook focused on eight steps to your board seat and did not include assessing the risk of becoming a board member, the interview process or your due diligence process.

You can download your copy of the Eight Steps to a Board of Directors Seat workbook here.

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About The Author

Julie England

What began as a transition out of Corporate America turned into Julie’s aspiration of becoming a painter. She studied art in Dallas, TX and Santa Fe, NM, two major hubs of art and culture in the Southwest. Julie's sense of line, color and texture is enriched by the years spent traveling to Santa Fe, NM. During that decade, hundreds of hours were spent exploring works of other painters combined with many years of community service in local art museums. She developed a strong sense and direction for her own path as a painter. Julie lives in Dallas, TX with her husband. She is involved as a current or former board member with the Dallas Museum of Art, Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts Advisory Board and Dallas Arboretum in Dallas, TX and Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, NM. Visit her website.