Shipleys LLP

Chartered Accountants and Professional Business Advisers

Raising the game of your board, faster

The June Meeting of the Godalming Business Breakfast hosted by Shipley’s considered the use of trusted outsiders to improve enterprise performance.  This concentrated on Non Executive Directors but acknowledged that other trusted outsiders who are already privy to confidential information, such as Auditors, can make a major contribution too.

Many of the considerations identified apply equally to Boards of Not-for-Profit and community or social enterprise bodies as well as more mainstream commercial and governmental undertakings.

An Advisory Board can be a good way of corralling as allies those trusted “critical friends” that also add external credibility and whom you would be sorry to see on the headed paper of a competitor.

The day-to-day management team comprised of the CEO and the heads of department may include people who do not themselves work full-time and may hold similar roles in non-competing organisations.  The benefits of this include their being technically / professionally up to date and securing a calibre of individual that would otherwise be un-affordably costly.   Such arrangement can also provide some of the contributions of a good non-executive director in being somewhat more detached and objective and less beholden to the CEO.  “They tend to see things afresh every time the enter the building”

The meeting touched on the ways in which boards as a whole seemed to be operating and agreed that most spent too little time looking forward and too much time reviewing the past.  “History tells us that we learn nothing from history unless we work very hard at it with the future in mind”

Click here to read the meeting summary in full.