Just because You Can, Doesn't mean You Should........

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by New Leaf, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Venting here gang.
    I was involved on a non-profit board. It was a cause that I have passion for, and stepped into leadership with good heart and intentions. Long story short, it got very stressful in the end (after 10 years of involvement). Younger folks stepped up, but their methods were very ugly, underhanded, unethical and disgusting. A "battle ensued" and the folks that worked with me handled everything with dignity and hopes to build bridges.
    This is a long standing non-profit that is supposed to help youth learn leadership skills......ahem.

    The MO of the younger group has been to slander people and burn bridges, running a political campaign of division and control.

    They ended up getting voted in and taking the reins.


    I am still involved somewhat, but more as a once in a while foot soldier. I help a dear friend by attending meetings, when she is unable. The board has become very chaotic, and out of hand as far as adhering to bylaws.

    Well, one of the board members approached me recently and asked if I was "running". I looked at him "Huh?" "Are you running for the board?" I said " No I am not.............. I am running the other way!!!!!"

    Time for someone else to step up.

    I am detaching....LOL.

    Fool me once....shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.

    Why do some people think they can mistreat others, then ask for more help? Why do people get involved with charitable organizations and become wrapped up in power games?

    It is a strange world we live in........

    So, although it is a teeny bit tempting to get more involved again as others are asking,
    I am NOT going to do it.

    Lesson learned........

    I am not the only one who could do it and
    just because I can, doesn't mean I should.......

    Thanks for the vent.

    Have an awesome day
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  2. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I'm in a similar boat, but the board I was involved in had a leader who wouldn't leave and was running it into the ground. I walked away from it about a year ago because she couldn't figure out that the By-Laws said that she couldn't serve a 3rd term - let alone a 6th! - and no one had time to read them. At this point there are about 3 people left from the original group, and they will be out of business by April if they don't do something RIGHT NOW. It's in their power, and they won't. It's a damned shame.
  3. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    UGH. I am glad you got out Witz. People just don't seem to understand
    that bylaws are the legal definition of board action and have to be followed. Don't like it? Put in an amendment. Bylaws should serve the organization......preaching to the choir, sorry!
    It is a damned shame. I think folks get bullied into complacency.
    I decided I was not going to hang around for anymore skulduggery.
    I hope someone out there has had a GOOD non-profit board experience!
    Thanks for sharing Witz, though it is awful, it's nice to know I am not the only one..........
  4. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member


    Many years ago I was part of a dog club. There was one woman who didn't like the way the club was run. She ended up suing half the members of the club for a variety of idiotic things. I was on the hook for $10 that the club reimbursed me for long distance phone calls. I couldn't believe she took me to court for such a paltry amount; plus, I could prove that I made the calls. I learned that I do not want to be a part of any "fun" activities that cease to be fun. Some people get a weird thrill out of making mountains out of molehills. If you smell drama, run - out the door.
  5. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    So true, my friend was Treasurer and she did a damn good job. They fried and fricasee'd her for something ridiculous, gave her the boot for all of her volunteerism, then turned around nigh a year later whining for budget templates that she worked hard to create. Bunch of crazy fools.
    I am sorry for what you went through Pigless, what a terrible waste of time. Life is too short to hang around folks who have no morals, and other folks who do nothing about it.
  6. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    No worries, Leafy. That happened back in life #3. It now falls under the heading of "Absurd things that have happened which are now humorous." It was extremely stressful at the time. The group of us being sued had to hire an attorney, have meetings, and go to court. In the end the judge decided to allow the National Dog Club to moderate the dispute. It was a huge waste of the taxpayers money for us to go to district court.

    Much later I ran into a man who had worked with the strange woman who brought the lawsuit. Apparently, she caused a lot of turmoil at work, too. She is definitely a toxic person.
  7. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Toxic people UGH, they are everywhere, if only they had a tattoo, or a sign, so folks would know what they may be getting into!
  8. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I have volunteered ALOT and plan on doing it more. I am always amazed that, in some volunteer organizations, there are as many cliques and backbiting as in paid jobs. Power hungry people are everywhere. Maybe t hat's why I never want to head any charitable origination. Too much drama and, yes, jealousy.

    Since I can just walk away from a volunteer place, with no loss of pay, I would, if it really got bad. You are doing the best thing for YOU, Leafie. Keep it up!
  9. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Thanks Serenity, I have been asked to attend the annual meeting my friend has a family thing to go to.
    On my walk this morning I was practicing saying no.
    I get suckered into stuff way too easily.

    I like being on the ground level coaching kids, just not cut out for the politics of boards......no fun.
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I totally understand how you feel, and I agree. Years ago I got roped into being on a PTA Board that turned into major source of tension & strife for both husband & I.. I will not serve on a board again... I am not cut out for politics on any level.

    My aunt taught me a lovely phrase for declining invitations to go to dinners, serve on boards, babysit, etc... "I don't think I would enjoy that." No, of course, is a complete sentence, but my aunt's phrase seems to leave the other party stumbling for ways to politely insist you would [When generally both parties know that you would prefer to clean the gutters while wearing only a thong and stiletto heels.]