Why good boards fail (part 2)

Board members not “Up To Date”

Board Members need access to the right information, at the right time, at the right level of detail in order to make the right decisions. The Board agenda and its associated Board papers form a substantial part of the information Boards Members receive to make those decisions.ladda ned (1)

The Board agenda will determine the issues to be discussed; this document is commonly assembled by the Chairman and the Corporate Secretary with input from the Executive. A Chairman would also typically offer Board Members the opportunity to suggest additional items as it is each Board Member’s responsibility to ensure that the right matters are tabled. The Chairman’s role in this is important to ensure the right agenda balance and further safeguard that the Executive is not overly controlling the Board’s agenda and possibly avoiding or reinforcing certain subjects.

I have worked extensively with one Board (Financial Services Industry) who requested that every Board paper presented by the Executive to the Board also include a final paragraph entitled “Recommended Board Resolution”. This recommended board resolution paragraph was to be written in a format that could be included in Board Minutes if the Board resolved to accept the recommendation. This not only crystallised the Executive’s recommendation in writing in one paragraph, but also allowed the Board to focus on the specific subject at hand.

Source: Stanton Chase
Author: Jan Bladen

Comments are closed.