2016                                                                                                               Issue 17


 

BoardWorks International


 
Welcome to Issue 17 of Board Works
 
 
Welcome to this issue of Board Works.  
 
The last few years have seen the publication of a wealth of new knowledge in neuroscience. Much of this has the potential to provide insight into board work and how it might be made more effective and efficient. In the opening article How Well Does Your Board Manage the Risk of Decision Fatigue? I explore a phenomenon that has direct implications for board effectiveness and look at ways to manage the risks involved.
 
The second article has direct relevance to mitigation of that risk but, more importantly, has had demonstrable impact on improving board meeting outcomes more generally. To Get More Out Of Board Meetings Turn Your Agenda Upside Down! describes a board meeting structure that 'puts first things first' ensuring that the board applies its energy and concentration to the things that matter most.
 
In the previous issue of Board Works I started an exploration of a problem too many boards experience and have difficulty resolving. In this follow-up, Rebalancing Chief Executive Dominance of the Board, I outline steps a board can take to ensure that they have a healthier and more mutually beneficial relationship with their chief executive.
 
Finally, in Selecting a Dream (Boardroom) Team, I outline a framework for thinking about board member selection. I hope that, in particular, the section on individual attributes emphasising the importance of a wide range of 'soft skills', will assist in a deeper consideration of individual characteristics that are central to boardroom effectiveness.
 
Good reading.
 
Graeme Nahkies
Director
BoardWorks International
 
 
PS. I am also pleased to advise readers that over the past year, I've been helping a local start-up develop innovative software for New Zealand and Australian boards. 
 
BoardPro is software that helps small to medium enterprise and not-for-profit boards manage their meetings, board documents and governance responsibilities. It fills a large gap in the market for those wanting to lift their game with technology but unable (or unwilling) to meet the cost of a corporate board portal. Into the bargain, BoardPro offers support that larger, more generously resourced organisations do not need.
 
I'm part of an advisory group that meets with the founders to help guide product development and ensure it supports and promotes sound governance practice.
 
Please check out what they can do for your board here.

 
Good reading
 
 
Graeme Nahkies
 
 
 

 

 
 
In This Issue
How Well Does Your Board Manage the Risk of Decision Fatigue?
To Get More Out Of Board Meetings Turn Your Agenda Upside Down!
Rebalancing Chief Executive Dominance of the Board
Selecting a Dream (Boardroom) Team

  Earlier this year I was involved in the governance of a project addressing a possible merger. Those of us who were responsible for steering the project found that evening teleconferences were often the only way we could connect. I was heavily committed throughout that period as were my colleagues. There were a variety of challenging, high-stakes issues we had to deal with but, on one call, I was so tired I found myself tempted to agree to just about anything to get the meeting over. .....

 

 
Read and Print the full Article




Article2Issue17To Get More Out of Board Meetings Turn Your Agenda Upside Down!
 
Parkinson's Law states that work expands to fill the time available. It is worse than that when it comes to board meetings. Whether boards meet for two hours or two days, too many board meetings run out of time. The most important discussions are left hanging and, possibly, lost sight of entirely. Later agenda items are rushed or deferred...
 

 

 
 
  
 
Article3Issue17Rebalancing Chief Executive Dominance of the Board.


Over time, many chief executives come to dominate their boards. The longer this situation persists, the more difficult it 
becomes for the board to assert its authority which, ultimately, it must. Also, the more likely it is that the relationship between chief executive and board will break (if it has not already) when that rebalancing occurs. ..


 
 
Article4Issue17Selecting a Dream (Boardroom) Team

    
In my part of the world, there is a growing number of people interested in taking up governance roles. This means, happily, that an increasing challenge is selecting from among a wide range of potential candidates. Rather than just accepting anyone who shows an interest, how should we think about and compare the relative merits of different candidates? 

  
 
 

14 Art 3   

 
Surround yourself with the best people you can find, delegate authority, and don't interfere as long as the policy you've decided upon is being carried out.

 
Ronald Reagan

 

 
 

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