Board Review

Given the board’s key role in setting the strategic vision of the organisation and monitoring of management, small improvements in the board’s performance can have a profoundly positive impact on the effectiveness of the organisation.

A board review allows the directors time for self-reflection and is the most effective means for identifying areas for improving performance. Leading practice strongly recommends that a board review should not only involve the board as a whole, but also reviews the contribution of individual directors through an externally facilitated process of self and peer evaluation.

Our Approach

A board review can commonly be used to assess how a board is performing in its governance role. As an overview, a board review can:

The Effective Governance approach – developed and refined from over 20 years’ experience – allows a Board to evaluate its performance quickly and easily. However it is rigorous enough to identify areas for improvement and ensure maximum benefits is achieved, Importantly, by providing directors time for self-reflection, it is the most effective means for identifying areas for improving performance. Leading practice indicated that a Board review should involve both the Board as a whole and a review of individual directors’ contributions, through an externally facilitated process of self and peer evaluation.

The framework for our Board review is the High Performance Board Model (shown below), which is aligned to the ASX Corporate Governance Council’s Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations and similar leading practice guidelines.

High Performance Board ModelHigh Performance Board FrameworkAdapted from Kiel, G, Nicholson, G, Tunny, JA & Beck, J 2012, Directors at Work:
A Practical Guide for Boards, Thomson Reuters, Sydney

Review Design and Data Gathering

The Effective Governance approach provides a forum for Directors to reflect candidly on how well the Board is meeting its responsibilities. It ensures the process creates a positive outcome for the Board, by enabling honest reflection and avoiding the perception that personal performance is being assessed. The design of the evaluation is critical to the process.

We strive to design the appropriate methodology for each client and provide a variety of data gathering options. Choices include questionnaires, interviews and documentation review (see below). At this stage, it is also worth considering extending the review process to include a review of Board committees, or an individual director performance assessments (self and peer).

Our questionnaires are administered in an easy-to-use online evaluation tool, or can be done on paper. They offer Boards an opportunity to assess their performance in a non-threatening and cost-effective way.

STAGE 1:
Project Planning
Determine project
scope and detailed project planning

During this stage we developed a comprehensive project plan. We liaised with
the appropriate people to distribute
questionnaire.
STAGE 2:
Research
Quantitative and Qualitative Research
In this stage we distributed an online questionnaire. Based upon questionnaire results we can conduct focused interviews to gather more information.
STAGE 3:
Analysis
Data Analysis
During this stage we reviewed the results of our research and synthesised the findings into a Findings Report.
STAGE 4:
Delivery of Findings
Board Workshop
The output from the project from the project will be delivered in a Board workshop.
STAGE 5:
Document Agreed Outcomes
Governance Roadmap
Agreed goals and activities arising from the Board workshop are documented in a Governance Roadmap.

Click here too see the board review survey tool in action.

Reporting the results

Our Board review findings report assists the Board to identify where they are performing well or where further discussion, decision and action is required on Board performance. Our eG rating, included in the graphs, supports this process. A Board workshop, to confidentially review the outcome, enables participants to give full and frank insights and provide useful feedback.

Sample Board Review Graph

board review sample graph

Review Outcomes

Board discussion, engagement and agreement on action are key success factors. eG can provide recommendations and facilities a Board workshop, providing the opportunity for discussion and action to enhance Board performance. Our Governance Road Map provides the Board with an action schedule for governance improvements agreed in the workshop, facilitating ongoing improvements and performance benchmarks of the Board’s progress.