Maintaining governance structures
Whether your organisation is suffering from under-governance or over-governance, or a unique mixture of the two, you must ensure that the governance structure and framework, after it is set out, responds to the changes in the wider organisation, whether a change in strategic objectives, the initiation of a new programme, a reorganisation, or even new leadership. Even if none of those events take place, we recommend reviewing your governance framework and structure at least annually. To diagnose the effectiveness of an organisation’s governance framework, we would suggest some of the following:
- Focus interviews at all levels of governance participants, soliciting their views on the effectiveness of the structure. A useful metric is to find out how much time each of them is spending attending, and preparing for, governance boards.
- Gathering any evidence of failed governance, from programmes that didn’t deliver Benefits to significant budget overruns that only surfaced at year-end.
- An examination of the boards’ terms of reference, and whether they contain the necessary parameters described above. Are individuals clear on their responsibilities? Are the authorities of the board clear? Are all the critical roles appointed?
- A comparison between the Terms of Reference and the board inputs and outputs, such as pre-read materials, presentations, attendance records, and minutes. Is the board really fulfilling the objectives it set out to do?
- A review of participants against the decision-making power of the board: this will indicate any deficiencies or surpluses in attendance.
- A benchmarking of the organisation against its peers.
Not every organisation will want to review its entire governance structure annually, but we suggest some 'kicking of the tyres' in those intervals, and more thorough reviews when the organisation has gone through a significant change.
About the Human Capital Network
The Human Capital Network was established by the London Business School Alumni Human Capital Club as a discussion forum that promotes open debate on the cutting-edge issues in strategic organisational change and talent management. We publish the cutting-edge research on organisational development and change in our Organisational Effectiveness series on Changeboard, provide an online discussion platform on our blog http://humancapitalnetwork.blogspot.com and run the Organisational Development Speaker Series at London Business School.
Our distinguished speakers provide perspectives from industry, management consultancy, academia, and trade bodies. Through the presentation of best practice case studies, new research and group discussion, our three interactive panels will help you identify and tackle the key Challenges of organisational change.
The past events of the Organisational Development Speaker Series covered such topics as the future of work, employee engagement strategies for the downturn and beyond and building change-ready organisational cultures. The next event of the series will be held in October 2010.
The Human Capital Network’s events are designed for senior OD and change practitioners and attract LBS alumni and external guests alike. Attendees of our past events represent a varied mix of industries and organisations, ranging from small entrepreneurial innovators to FTSE 250 blue chips, greatly contributing to the quality of panel interaction and the after-panel networking.
About Oxana Popkova
Oxana is a principal with Molten Group in London and a chair of the LBS Human Capital Network. Oxana advises companies on best practices in organisational effectiveness, change management, talent management and learning & development. Oxana has worked for a variety of blue-chip clients.