Every organization has a board that takes important decisions for the business. There are presidents, chairman, leader of the board, and other members. There’s an executive committee, board meeting, and a structured approach to mek plans and decisions. Boards have several regulatory and legal characteristics that they must abide by in order to comply with the board governance best practices of organizational management.
Fundamentals of Board Governance
In many instances, the board has multiple responsibilities with each person holding a role. Board governance is often misrepresented and most people often confuse it with an executive committee. However, there are different types of boards with different roles in the strategic planning process, decision-making, and overall objective evaluation of the organization.
This article will focus on what board governance involves. It will highlight the common elements of any board committee and outline what exactly a board is and its responsibilities. If you are undergoing board governance training, this will provide you detailed information about its workings by helping you better understand the meaning of governance.
Board governance: The definition
Board governance is the framework that determines how the board operates. It is a collection of responsibilities and duties that the board must undertake for fulfilling the purpose of the company’s existence. The board must have members with effective leadership skills who can legally guard the corporate entity. They must organize resources, undergo the strategic planning process, and make decisions that benefit the organization and help in achieving the overall goal.
There are two different types of boards. For-profit boards focus on capitalistic market determinants and are accountable to shareholders for improving the profits. Not-for-profit or government boards are based on policy determinants and are accountable to the members of the state.
Board governance training will offer you insight into two major responsibilities of the board members –
1. Collective responsibility
The collective responsibility entails that the individual members do not have any authority but must advise the company as a collective. They must not have a conflict of interest. The purpose should be to make decisions that benefit the organization as a whole without any individual profit motive. They provide advice and counsel to a higher authority, or sometimes the chairman. All their decisions must be backed by policies, which should always be in the best interest of the organization.
2. Fiduciary responsibility
The second responsibility is towards the overall well-being and success of the organization. Board governance involves taking responsibility for the finances, resources, labor, and more. The members have to ensure that everyone is working towards achieving the core objective of the company. Any individual is legally responsible to the board for any actions they take without the knowledge of other members. Board governance best practices involve aligning the personnel to their roles, keeping them updated, and ensuring that personal interests do not come before the organizational interests.
Strategic planning process in board governance
The board and management are together responsible for the planning and execution of strategic planning. The board determines areas of strategic focus and analyzes trends in each area. The members propose changes and are responsible with the management to ensure the implementation of such policies.
Apart from this, the board members also have multiple duties. They must determine the organization’s mission and vision, hire the CEO, provide support & guidance, review the CEO’s performance, and ensure effective organizational planning and strategic decision making.
Board governance training will provide you a detailed outline of all the responsibilities that the board has to fulfil. While there is much evolution in governance over the years, the important aspects remain the same and legally account board members as collectively responsible for each decision they make.