This exercise can spark important discussion about diversity.


This exercise allows each individual to assess how the organization plans for and implements change. By the end of the exercise, the Board will identify how the organization typically thinks about change.


Make a copy of this handout for each board member. Have each board member think about how your organization typically plans for and implements changes. With this “change history” in mind, have each member respond to the statements below, circling the numbers that most closely reflect their experience. After the meeting, have someone compile the results.


Choose one of the following for each statement:

  • 1 = I Disagree
  • 2 = I’m Not Sure
  • 3 = I Agree

1. Change typically occurs here with a clear picture or vision of the intended future.
2. Appropriate resources are allocated to make the change work.
3. The purpose or rationale for any change is clearly communicated to staff, volunteers, clients, etc.
4. Management consistently demonstrates support for the change.
5. People impacted by the change are actively involved in shaping the desired future.
6. New expectations are a clear priority and desired actions are reinforced.
7. People most affected by the change are involved in identifying possible obstacles.
8. Processes are in place to document or report on our progress in making change work.
9. Communication channels with designated leaders are open for all staff, volunteers, clients, etc.
10. Staff, volunteers, clients, etc. regularly know how well they are meeting the change expectations.
11. Key milestones are recognized with celebrations, rewards, or other acknowledgement.
12. Staff, volunteers, clients, etc., have a clear understanding of the expectations that accompany any change.
13. Steps are taken to ensure that staff, volunteers, clients, etc. affected by a change have the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary to make the change work.
14. Managers and other leaders make themselves easily accessible for answering questions and information sharing during times of change.
15. If the change involves significantly altering existing company-wide systems or processes, a trial period is conducted before the change is fully implemented.
16. Designated leaders actively seek input from staff, volunteers, clients, etc. concerning challenges, expectations, and innovations.
17. Overall, my organization leads, manages, and supports change in an effective, energizing way.

Top Three Areas of Board Concern:


At the following board meeting, choose a discussion leader and present the compiled answers to the board for reflection. Discuss the results and make note of any areas of concern regarding the organization’s readiness for change. Discuss and document steps to work on areas where the board, staff or organization may need additional preparation for change.

You can download this exercise FREE as a PDF to distribute to your board. The exercise is from our workbook, Getting Ready for a Diverse Board: 10 minute exercises to prepare your board! It was developed in collaboration with Arty Trost.