Being an effective trustee
Being a trustee of a local charity is a rewarding and challenging way to use your skills and experience to benefit others. To help you in the role, we have put together some resources.
(This list was prepared to support the “Becoming an Effective Trustee” webinar held on 14 October 2021 for new trustees. However, it is also suitable for any trustee who is looking for help to become more effective.)
Becoming an Effective Trustee – webinar follow-up
Please use the yellow button below to access the slides from the webinar.
Trustees’ Week 1 – 5 November 2021
Trustees’ Week is an annual event to showcase the work of trustees. This is also a good time to access training and resources for trustees.
- Getting on Board – Festival of trusteeship – The Festival is stuffed with exciting events for people who want to become trustees, trustees who want to keep learning and developing, and for charity leaders who want to understand best practice in trustee recruitment and diversity. (Getting on Board have offered our members a 50% discount. Use the code LOCAL50. The code also works on weekly passes, so you can attend as many of the 24 events as you’d like, for just £12.50.)
- NCVO Trustees Week – A range of online events (including a free webinar on undertaking a Governance review), plus access to board templates free of charge during the week.
Good governance – the legal bits
Where to keep up to date on your legal responsibilities as a trustee:
- NCVO Getting started in Governance – a good overview of your responsibilities
- Charity Commission – The Essential Trustee: what you need to know, what you need to do
- Directory of Social Change – governance section with training days and publications
The following are just a few examples of where you can find information on issues that could affect your charity:
- Surrey-i – brings together datasets from a range of sources across Surrey. Use the Surrey index, a mapping tool, to compare your area with others or to get the latest statistics that are relevant to your charity.
- Local authority websites and newsletters e.g.
- Surrey County Council organisation strategy 2021-2026 – a high level overview of the priorities for the County Council.
- Reigate & Banstead Borough Council Calendar of Meetings – view committee reports and receive updates
- Sign up for Newsletters or follow organisations on social media e.g.
- Local events – The VARB website has an Events section that lists local Forums within Surrey. (Attend or receive papers.)
Strategic Planning and the Bottom Line
The following organisations offer training in strategic planning, finance, and impact measurement:
- NPC – a think tank and consultancy for the social sector offering blogs, events, training. Speciality area: Theory of Change.
- NCVO training – includes Financial Training for Trustees; Strategic Planning; Outcomes and Impact measurement and Theory of Change.
- Small Charity Coalition – short, low-cost training sessions, including finance, legal and strategic planning.
- Skylark – a local charity support network, specialising in strategic planning and board support.
Resources that help model the behaviour and culture of effective trustees:
- The Charity Governance Code – this covers governance issues, but the sections on Leadership and Integrity are very relevant when considering leadership behaviours. (Note there is recommended practice for smaller charities as well as large charities).
- Association of Chairs – events and resources for chairs, vice-chairs and prospective chairs. A particular emphasis on managing relationships within a charity board.
Check out the Trustee and Governance training for a selection of low-cost or free training courses relevant to trustees.