Board & Leadership Workshops

Yes, things are changing at a rapid pace. We can’t meet together physically in the same way we used to. Has the need for leadership training and board planning and strategy gone away? NO! In fact, the need for congregational leaders to think generatively and take action is greater than ever.

The URJ is here to be your partner. Work with a trained facilitator to create a fantastic learning, discussion and action planning session which will catalyze your work as congregational leaders.

What is a URJ board workshop?

A URJ Leadership Workshop is a 2 to 3 hour focused workshop taking place via the Zoom online platform and tailored to your congregation’s individual needs and interests.

As a benefit of your URJ membership, this workshop is led by URJ-trained lay leaders or staff, who will work with your congregation’s leadership to craft and facilitate a dynamic and interactive session for your congregational board and/or specific leadership group.

During a URJ Leadership Workshop, participants discuss ideas, strategize, and plan for the future of the congregation. Following the workshop, the congregation will receive support from the URJ as it proceeds to the next steps.

How does the URJ plan a workshop for my congregation?

The facilitator and congregational leadership work together for several months to plan for the workshop. URJ staff and volunteers will work with your congregation well in advance of, and after, the workshop to:

  • Clarify the goals and desired outcomes of the workshop
  • Speak with stakeholders in the congregation
  • Survey the board, if applicable
  • Ensure that a minimum of 80% of the group will be able to attend the workshop
  • Facilitate the workshop
  • Help define next steps for the congregation and leadership
  • Provide guidance and support following the workshop
  • Identify next steps for the congregation to explore as it moves forward
  • Provide feedback about the workshop
  • Communicate with the URJ as the congregation proceeds in accomplishing the next steps

Who are the facilitators?

URJ Leadership workshops are led by volunteers, congregational leaders, and URJ staff members, who have been trained by the URJ to work with groups of people and to guide them through an interactive, participatory, productive and meaningful discussion. Our facilitators bring years of experience working with congregationss. In order to stay current, facilitators share resources with each other and participate in ongoing development sessions, including training in online meetings and facilitations.


Congregational Governance and Sacred Partnership

  • What is our “why?”: Thinking about Mission/Vision/Values
  • Building Blocks of a Better Board
    • Rethinking the role of the board
    • Preparing to be an effective board member
    • Working with committees and task forces
    • Creating effective meetings and the balance between fiduciary, strategic and generative governance
  • Sacred Partnership: Working effectively and productively with our partners
  • Communicating effectively with one another
    • Leader to leader
    • Messages we send to our congregants and congregation
  • Recruiting and engaging new volunteers
  • How we work with volunteers


  • Engaging members beyond the “usual suspects”
  • Deepening relationships in your congregation
  • Conducting a Listening Campaign/How to facilitate a listening group

NEW! Creating a Culture of Philanthropy

  • Creating A Culture of Philanthropy in our congregation
  • Who Does What? Roles and responsibilities of leaders in a Culture of Philanthropy
  • Storytelling and the importance of a great narrative
  • Mastering “the ask”
  • Planned giving and endowments

NEW! Sparking Innovation and Change

  • Understanding Change and Transition
  • A Mindset and Readiness for Change
  • The Change Continuum: Thinking about Improvement, Transformation and Disruption
  • The Five Shifts Congregations Need to Make To Keep Up With Changing Times
  • Prioritizing the Work: The Three Box Solution
  • Prioritizing the Work: What Should we STOP Doing?

Want to request a workshop?

To begin the conversation, contact our Board Workshops team via the URJ Marketplace or at the URJ Knowledge Network (