BLUF: need advice on effectively organizing stakeholders around the search for a non-profit executive director.
In one of my lives, I’m involved in a non-profit that provides services directly to a special needs population. We’ve come out of start-up mode but are not yet fully established. The board is supportive but not deeply engaged. The executive director who established the program is moving on. Stakeholders include the board, the families of those served, the service providers, and funders.
1. Should the Search Committee solicit input from every stakeholder group at the start of the process? Should it proceed with input from the board only?
2. How should the committee communicate its process, and its progress? Note: the committee is seriously considering altering the responsibilities and roles to improve the effectiveness of the organization. The board may need to be educated in this regard.
3. The job description was written by the outgoing Executive Director. He was extraordinary, and it is hard to imagine finding someone who could fill the position as it is currently defined. How can expectations be managed? Should we consider changing the description once we find a worthy candidate who may not be perfect?
4. If current key staff members are to be considered for a more significant role as part of this process, when should they be brought into the discussion?
Advice on any or all of these questions would be deeply appreciated. If there are questions I should be asking but am not, advice in that regard would also be appreciated.