Articles on Governance and Leadership in Purpose Driven Organisations.
The Path to Effective NFP Board and Director Evaluations
In the past, board performance in the not-for-profit (NFP) sector was seen to not need to be at the same standard as that required in the commercial sector. Thankfully, this view is changing, as it is far from the truth. Whether an organisation is focused on obtaining a profit or not, its governing body (whether it is a board, council or other grouping) should be adding value to that organisation, not hindering organisational performance.
Practical Steps to Good Governance and Risk Management
For us tragic Essendon Football Club supporters, good governance is something that cannot be ignored. Governance and risk management go hand-in-hand, and provide a framework to ensure that an organisation meets its legal obligations, manages its risks and ensures appropriate accountability throughout the organisation. Some practical steps which a Board might consider as part of this framework include: Board Charter A Charter can set out the duties, responsibilities and expectations of the Board, the Chief Executive and the executive staff of an organisation.
I spent my formative years growing up in the ‘60s with a very much older set of parents. Older by a decade than probably most others, older in their world views and values, and older in their behaviours too. They were my ‘leaders’. They mostly said, and occasionally did, the things that they wanted or expected of me and like many other kids of the ‘60s – I did the things that I wanted to do.
Leading Change That Sticks: The Board’s Role
Are you part of the problem? It’s January and with New Year’s Resolutions fresh, it’s a time to contemplate change. Few would dispute that we are facing a time of what seems like increasing change and complexity. Failure to convert intention to action is a major risk in planning and responding to the changing landscape. What if as a director, and as a board, your own unconscious motivators around change were part of the reason for change being unsustainable in your organisation?
The Australian Guide to Chairing Meetings — Book Review
Years of experience have shown that the most efficient way to transact the business of a meeting is to have a clear set of rules that ensure that every decision is made in accordance with democratic principles, that minority opinion is respected, and that few dominating individuals cannot impose their will on the rest of the group.” Marjorie Puregger’s The Australian Guide to Chairing Meetings is a compact but comprehensive resource on the formal structures associated with holding a meeting.
Enabling Better Decisions at the Board Table
High performing boards make decisions At the recent Better Boards Conference, Nonie Wales and Morri Young of Matrix on Board gave a presentation on ‘Board Business: Sharing the load’. They defined a high performing board as one that: is well lead makes decisions has good information all members participate in board business Whilst other defining characteristics of a high performing board could be added to this list, few would disagree with what they outlined.
One of the biggest complaints made against non-profit organisations by members is that they are not consulted and not informed about what is happening. As the non-profit sector continues to develop, there has been a move away from boards made up of representative directors towards boards comprising independent, skills-based directors. While most would applaud this development, there have been a number of unintended consequences. The first has been a degree of separation anxiety.
Governance and Legal Risk Management
The terms governance, clinical governance and legal risk are much bandied about but hold different meanings for different people. Some of the possible interpretations include:- Minimising Liability – particularly steps to reduce liability and exposure. Accountability – improving accountability and transparency within organisations, particularly decision making. Risk management – dealing with legal risk, financial risk and business risk within an enterprise. Compliance – meeting statutory, regulatory and other requirements. In the usual context legal risk management relates to how boards can be satisfied that risks and liabilities within an enterprise are being addressed.
What is the difference between a not-for-profit and a non-profit organisation?
There is no difference between a non-profit organisation and a not-for-profit organisation. These two terms are simply different ways of describing the same type of entity. There are several more terms that are sometimes used to describe these types of organisations and the sector they constitute, these include: for-purpose, third sector, community business, civil society, non-governmental, social-benefit. The abbreviations for these terms are also used, including: NFPs (not-for-profits), NGOs (non-governmental organisations), NPOs (non-profit organisations), NPIs (non-profit institutes).
Financial Statements Demystified — Book Review
David Hey-Cunningham’s Financial Statements Demystified was written for business and non-profit leaders who have a limited formal understanding of financial statements and accounting principles. With this book, Hey-Cunningham seeks to provide readers with a basic introduction to these matters in order to assist them to better understand their organisation or business and, in turn, for those enterprises to become more successful and sustainable. Although this text is not specifically aimed at non-profit organisations it is invaluable as an Australian resource on financial statements and financial management that is easily as relevant to the non-profit sector as to the business world.