They're probably not bad eggs.
Focused Board is a process in which we work with the board and CEO to enable the board to reach a higher level of focus, engagement, and effectiveness. It's designed to help an organization’s board understand its responsibilities, become engaged in the proper work, and find the right alignment of roles and personnel. Focused Board is not a training lecture, it's a combination of interaction with the board and coaching of the CEO (and Board Chair, as needed). The process is owned by both the CEO and the board, which is much more satisfying than having a CEO sic a consultant on the board to "fix" it.
COMMON COMPLAINTS ABOUT GOVERNING BOARDS
You are probably here because you’re experiencing some form of “board pain.” We hear these complaints often, from CEOs and board members alike:
Board members don’t help fundraise or with strategic planning.
They are not engaged.
They are too busy with other things.
They don't answer my emails.
Their meeting attendance is inconsistent.
They aren’t clear about their duties, roles, or boundaries.
They don’t monitor our policies and risk exposure very well.
They don’t really know our programs or priorities.
They can’t be counted upon.
They are passive.
Or, they micromanage.
OUR RESPONSE: THE FOCUSED BOARD PROCESS
We created Focused Board to address these concerns and to demonstrably raise your board’s levels of engagement and effectiveness. Focused Board brings your board into an environment that is highly interactive rather than lecture-focused. Board concepts are explained through creative visuals. Your board dialogues about ways to activate the principles in your particular context. The goal is to get your board engaged at just the right level: A "Goldilocks Board" ("not too much, not too little, but just right!").
You probably wonder, “How do we build our board?” We’ll lead you in thinking through the priorities for the board and the types of people that will best maximize your mission.
We share the legal duties the board members have, discuss their roles and responsibilities, unify and encourage them as a team, and help them to figure out how best to carry out their stewardship responsibility for the organization. We address the thorny issue of “fundtimidation,” which is our word for the fear that board members have about asking for money. We’ll show them how they can help the organization raise resources in ways that are joyful and motivating.
We’ll explain why organizations must be both visionary and methodical. About how to have effective and engaging board meetings that use time instead of waste it. About what you should have in your bylaws, what committees best fit your situation, and how you can most effectively realize your organization’s mission. We may delve into branding/marketing and risk management.
The key to board change is to do more than just spend time together in "board training." After all, you could have a great experience but walk away with no follow-through. This happens all the time in the consulting world. That’s why we believe that as a result of the retreat you should "Go APE" with Action Plans and Execution. We’ll determine your next steps and ask your team to commit to follow-through and accountability. Follow-through is more difficult to do without outside help. It's vital to have follow-on coaching for the CEO and the board chair.
YOUR NEXT STEP
Focused Board is an incredible value for your organization. The cost is reasonable and can be defrayed in ways that protect your General Funds. Contact us to find out how, and to hear more about what Focused Board can do for you!
You have such an amazing grasp of boards and what it takes to be effective - specifically the types of change, the catalyst for change, and the responsibilities content. Very much appreciate your sharing your wisdom and insights with us! Very clear, practical, and ministry-tested perspectives. —MB, Consultant, Michigan