LEADer #08 - 2010 Summer
Your Board's Culture: No Pain, No Gain?
What is board culture and how does it contribute to effectiveness
Every co-op board is, by its very nature, a microcosm of your community and the various interest groups that make up any multi-stakeholder group. Knowing and understanding the dynamics that are at play in such a group are key to effective board governance.
In this issue, we look at the third element that contributes to a high-functioning board – the board’s culture. (In the prior issue, we looked at two other elements – the board’s systems and how it fulfills its role.)
What Is Board Culture And Why Does It Matter – Philip Buri and Martha Whitman
Board culture can be as intangible as it is important. Anyone who has served on a dysfunctional board can tell you why. Those who have served on great boards have seen the real benefits of healthy board culture. The board is effective and remains so.
Three Signs of an Effective Board Culture – Marcia Shaw
Do you ever worry that your board has tensions just waiting to explode and disrupt its effectiveness? An ounce of prevention is worth a proverbial pound of cure. Here are three early warning signs that, despite a veneer of goodwill and good discussion, all is not well at the process or dynamic level for a board.”
Ask the BEST: Bringing New Directors “On Board” – BEST
“We recently had a contentious issue at our co-op. Two new directors were elected on the platform of vocal opposition to the current board’s position on this issue. How do we deal with these new directors?” We offer some thoughts on how to orient new directors to a board’s culture.
For More Information – compiled by Paige Lettington
Study Guide – Part 1 – Board Culture Assessment
Use a simple pain assessment scale to pinpoint individual directors’ pain levels with the board. Then discuss the questions provided to learn what is causing the pain and what you can do to improve.
Study Guide – Part 2 – Early Warning Signs of Breakdown in Board Effectiveness
We offer seven assessment areas that can provide insight into the board’s culture and ability to effectively govern.