Autumn Board Away Day Start Planning Now

Does your board engage effectively in developing strategy? If the answer is “no or partly” you are not alone many organisations have limited engagement?

This is not just a problem for housing: in 2011 a McKinsey survey of large commercial corporations found, only 10 percent of the directors felt that they fully understood the industry dynamics in which their companies operated. As a result, only 21 percent of them claimed to have a completeunderstanding of the current strategy. One likely reason is an expertise gap another is time and commitment.

A related finding was that 44 percent of directors said their boards simply reviewed and approved management’s proposed strategies.

To ensure strategic assumptions/options are tested Board members should approach these discussions with an owner’s mind-set and with the goal of helping management to broaden its thinking by considering new, even unexpected, perspectives.

Registered providers' business plans need to be built on robust and prudent assumptions. Board should assure themselves that the assumptions used are reasonable on the basis of past performance, market conditions, deliverability and forecasts of possible future conditions or changes in government policies.

The board away day is the perfect forum to facilitate this critical friend challenge and testing. Boards need time—some without management present—facilitated by someone other than the executive- so they can more fully understand the structure and economics of the business, and future gaze.

A board away day gives boards time to get ahead of issues rather than always feeling a step behind the executive

1-2 day away ensures adequate time, outside of the board room to focus entirely on debating and deciding between strategic options and then working through the resource-allocation implications of the decisions.

This autumn consider bringing in an expert independent facilitator from BDA to ensure the meeting runs smoothly. Having a facilitator allows the Chair and CEO to participate more fully in the discussion.

A board away day takes months of planning. Start now engage with the chair and board to plan it. Contact BDA to see how we can help you ensure the day is as effective as your organisation needs for a secure future in these troubled times

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