If you have been a member of a board of directors in the last 40 years, you have most likely been exposed to the question,
“Are you a governance Board?”
This question is really asking whether or not your board has moved beyond trying to operate the organization to better understanding its role to oversee or govern the organization. It is really seeking to determine if you and your board have adopted some form of policy governance that is derived from the work of John Carver and is often now referred to as International Policy Governance. In this form of governance, the board of directors is the primary audience for the concepts discussed; teaching the board of directors that they need to be disciplined in order to define the “ends” for the organization, limiting the “means” of the organization, and “staying out” of all operational aspects of the organization’s work.
Carver’s work has and will continue to be an important building block in our understanding of the function of the board of directors, but anyone who has been on a board of directors trying to implement this form of governance knows that there is something missing, something beyond governance.
Beyond governance is an understanding that we need to see the board of directors and the executive of the organization as mutual influencers in the organization that have unique roles that when properly aligned and mutually disciplined can have incredible impacts on their effectiveness.
When properly aligned the board of directors and the executive can both uniquely influence the future and the current activities of the organization as well have unique and complimentary “do” roles. No longer will it only be the board of directors job to be disciplined to their role, both the board and the executive will have defined and aligned roles.
Intrigued? This new structure actually exists. It is called Aligned Influence ® and you can find out more about it a www.alignedinflence.com.