This phase may involve board retreats, clinics, workshops, or education sessions. It may also involve additional observations and meetings with the CEO and senior staff about leading alongside a board that is governing consequentially.
During retreats and clinics, we present key findings from the intake phase to the board in advance and then facilitate a conversation about confirmation of pre-existing beliefs, insights, and surprises. At these meetings we help the board learn new ways of doing business together, new ways of thinking, and new ways of governing to ensure effective partnerships with management. This leads to an action plan that enhances the board’s effectiveness and augments the board’s value as a strategic asset to the organization.
All meetings are followed within a week or two by a debriefing with the CEO, Board Chair and others deemed appropriate. We can also provide sample documents (e.g., statements of board member norms and expectations, committee charges, performance dashboards, and evaluation forms) that the board and management can use as models.
“During the 2013 Independent Schools Association of the Southwest meetings I attended Cathy Trower’s presentation and felt I had struck gold. I devoured her book ‘The Practitioner’s Guide to Governance and Leadership: Building High-Performance Nonprofit Boards,’ talked with the executive committee, and began designing a board curriculum for the year based on Cathy’s work. The first board session was dynamic and energizing, with previously quiet people much more engaged, and they wanted more. I’m truly excited about the possibilities that tapping into Cathy’s advice has opened up for us.”