Here’s an interesting fact: Microsoft, one of the largest software makers and most valuable companies in the world, introduced its digital multimedia encyclopedia Encarta in 1993. It fizzled in 2009. Wikipedia, a largely volunteer-based organization, introduced its web-based free-content encyclopedia in 2001. Today, it is the biggest and possibly best multi-lingual encyclopedia in the world.
This is a wonderful example of just how powerful volunteers can be, when they are motivated. The problem is, most of us in the nonprofit world do not know how to motivate our volunteers—specifically boards of directors—very well.