How can I get my employer to support me?

Many employers are very supportive of their staff volunteering as governors but if your employer is reluctant, it is probably because they haven’t understood the role or its benefits. They may think it will take a lot time, require numerous daytime meetings, or distract you from your work. However, none of these are true for the vast majority of governors.

There is ample evidence to take to your employer to demonstrate that there are great benefits to be had for both you and them. You will develop valuable board-level skills that will help you at work and in your whole career. Your employer will benefit from you further developing your skills such as teamwork, influencing and negotiation, financial management, as well as in other areas. They will, at the same time, be supporting their local school or college. Engaging in school or college governance also allows your employer to offer their perspective on the strategy of the school or college and have influence over issues like curriculum and workforce, ensuring that they meet employer needs.

The CBI produced a report highlighting some of these benefits (particularly in sections 4 and 5):

www.cbi.org.uk/media/2487439/leading_the_way.pdf

The City of London has also commissioned a report on the business case for volunteering. It found that governors reported a substantial development in areas of team working, influencing and negotiation skills, and financial skills, amongst other skill areas. To read this report, visit:

www.educationandemployers.org/research/research-reports/employers-and-employees/volunteering—the-business-case/

The Evening Standard have reported on why becoming a governor or trustee is not only beneficial to schools, but the volunteers and employers aswell. Read the full article: Have you got skills to offer schools?