Role of HBS Alumni Who Are Currently Board, Advisory Committee or Staff Members of, or Consultants to Potential Pro Bono Clients
Having a strong connection to a nonprofit as a board member, as a member of an advisory committee, as a member of its staff, or as a consultant to the organization can be an advantage in developing a new Client and pro bono relationship for Community Partners. On the other hand, it is important that potential volunteers for a project who may be in this position do not confuse their roles.
In the event that a current or recently-left (i.e. within the last 6 months) board member, advisory committee member, staff member, or consultant to a nonprofit under consideration, who is also an alumnus of Harvard Business School, introduces a nonprofit to the services of Community Partners, or learns about such a project through other means, such a current or recently-left board member, advisory committee member, staff member, or consultant should not serve directly on the Team of Volunteers working on the Project involving this Client.
Such a person, however, can play an important role representing the nonprofit Client in expediting the work of the Team, if this is agreed to by the Client, the Community Partners Board, and the Project Coordinator working on this Project. No restrictions should apply to former nonprofit board members, advisory committee members, staff members, or consultants, who left their nonprofit positions with the Client more than six months earlier than the start of the proposed Client Project engagement.
Avoidance of Conflicts of Interest
In an organization such as HBSCNY, including its informal association with the Harvard Business School, it is essential that Volunteers avoid conflicts of interest, and the appearance of conflicts of interest, in carrying out their volunteer work for the Client organization. With this in mind, during the duration of a pro bono Project and for a period of 60 days (the “Waiting Period”) following the completion of such Project engagement, you agree:
A. Not to promote your own commercial, financial or business interests with respect to the Client;
B. Not to solicit or accept paid employment or consulting assignments with the Client;
C. Not to solicit any form of commercial relationship with the Client including, without limitation, sales, licensing, consulting, or advisory services involving any products or services;
D. Not to solicit any form of donation, grant, charitable contribution or services from the Client; and
E. Not to solicit the Client on behalf of any friend, relative, employer, or professional colleague, with respect to any of the matters or transactions indicated in (A) – (D) above.
As a Community Partners Volunteer, you also agree to observe the Waiting Period before entering into discussions with a Client on matters pertaining to (A) – (E) above. Recognizing that strong professional and personal relationships often result from pro bono consulting Projects, this policy is not intended to prevent or limit discussions or transactions from taking place after the 60-day Waiting Period.
The Waiting Period does not apply, however, when, at the Client’s initiative, (i) a Volunteer is requested to undertake further unpaid or pro bono services for the Client after a Project is completed, or (ii) a Volunteer is requested to serve as an unpaid member of such Client’s board of directors or of an advisory committee after the Project is completed.
If something arises during the course of your relationship with a Client that has the appearance of, or is, a conflict of interest of the nature outlined above, you are requested to inform a member of the Community Partners Board or the Project Coordinator with whom you are working on the Project promptly in order that a suitable course of action can be worked out to everyone’s understa