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					Company Secretaries’
Conference 2009

                     S6
  Board development – identifying the gaps

   Speaker:      Carolyn Hirst
                 Board Member
                 Accent Group
                 and Consultant
                 Hirstworks
                 Matthew Sugden
                 Head of Legal Services
                 Accent Group
   Chair:        Belinda Porich
                 Head of London Region
                 National Housing Federation
Board Development -
A Board Member View


  Carolyn Hirst
  Group Board Member, Accent Group Limited




                                             Slide 2
Board Development
Presentation Overview
s

he Code of Governance
s

he Future Operating Environment
s

oard Member Knowledge and Skills
s

he Company Secretary
                                   Slide 3
Board Development
The Code of Governance
 B1 The purpose of the Board is to determine
 strategy, direct, control, scrutinise and evaluate
 an organisation’s affairs: management of the
 organisation should be delegated to the
 organisation’s staff.




                                                      Slide 4
Board Development
The Code of Governance
 B3 To discharge its responsibilities for the
 direction of the organisation, the Board as a
 whole should have or acquire a diverse range
 of skills, competencies, experience and
 knowledge. Each Board should determine the
 key non-negotiable skills that all Board
 Members should have and the skills that
 individuals can bring will make the Board more
 effective.


                                                  Slide 5
Board Development
The Code of Governance
 C3 The Chair, in liaison with the Company
 Secretary, should ensure that all new Board
 Members receive induction training and that
 effective arrangements are made to enhance
 the skills, experience and knowledge of all its
 Members on an ongoing basis. This should be
 based on an analysis of training and
 development needs of individuals and the
 Board as a whole.


                                                   Slide 6
Board Development
The Future Operating Environment
•   Increasing Uncertainty
•   Increasing Complexity
•   Increasing Scrutiny
•   Increasing Expectations
•   Increasing Challenge



                                   Slide 7
Board Development
Two Key Questions

Does the Board have the right knowledge?
Does the Board work effectively?




                                           Slide 8
Board Development
Board Member Knowledge
“Every board needs members with knowledge of
the law, accountancy, human resources,
housing management, asset management and
customer care. Depending on your
organisation’s objectives, board members who
understand capital finance, regeneration,
development and merger might be required”.
                    HQN Self-assessment toolkit for housing association
                                   and ALMO board members (2008)



                                                                          Slide 9
Board Development
Board Responsibilities

Stewardship
s


Watchdog
s


Facilitation
s


Collaborative Leadership
s




                           Slide 10
Board Development
Board Member Skills
“The problem was that in the boardroom, people
heard things they didn’t understand, but they
didn’t feel they could ask a question. If they
asked a question, they would get an answer they
didn’t understand and then they wouldn’t
challenge it. There wasn’t that environment of
constructive contention combined with
collegiality, which enables a board to do its job.”

                                                      Slide 11
Board Development
Emotional Intelligence – Competency Groups

s   Self-Awareness
s   Self-Management
s   Social Awareness
s   Social Skills
                                Goleman (1995)




                                                 Slide 12
Board Development
Board Member Skills
s   Listening
s   Questioning
s   Decision-making
s   Building and maintaining relationships
s   Conflict management
s   Plate spinning!

                                             Slide 13
Board Development
Board Effectiveness
“We believe a new governance imperative for
board effectiveness is emerging”.
“The most important responsibility of every
board’s leaders is to foster and maintain a
culture of openness, independence, broad
participation, and constructive dissent and
contention”.
                                      David Nadler (2006)



                                                            Slide 14
Board Development
What do I need from my Company Secretary?
To trust their knowledge and competence
s


To hear my worries and concerns
s


To see me as a person with individual needs
s


To work with me in my development as a Board
s

Member



                                               Slide 15
      THANK YOU
Contact Details
Hirstworks@aol.com
07775 507450




                     Slide 16
Company Secretaries’
Conference 2009

                     S6
  Board development – identifying the gaps

   Speaker:      Carolyn Hirst
                 Board Member
                 Accent Group
                 and Consultant
                 Hirstworks
                 Matthew Sugden
                 Head of Legal Services
                 Accent Group
   Chair:        Belinda Porich
                 Head of London Region
                 National Housing Federation
Board Development -
The Company Secretary
Role

  Matthew Sugden
  Head of Legal Services, Accent Group Limited




                                             Slide 18
Board Development
Accent Overview – The Task

s   Accent Group Limited

s   3 Main Registered Providers managing over
    20,000 properties

s   PFI, LIFT and Commercial Business Units
s   Significant Area of Operations Require a
    Significant Range of Skills

                                                Slide 19
Board Development
The Company Secretary Role

s   Absolutely vital
s   Driving the process
s   Identifying the knowledge and skills gaps
s   Working with the Board on development




                                                Slide 20
Board Development
What have we done? – Driving the Process

s   Self Assessment
s   Independent Annual Appraisal
s   Good Governance Action Plan
s   Group and Individual Plans




                                           Slide 21
Board Development
What have we done? – Plugging The Gaps

s   Varied individual and collective Board
    development programme
s   Evolving skills matrices and Board
    requirements
s   What strengths do current Members bring?
s   What strengths are we likely to need in the
    future?
s   New Members – Get on Board – Independent
    Appraisal Process                             Slide 22
Board Development
What have we done? – Working with the
Board
s   Key – Getting Board to own the development
    programme
s   Keep Training Varied and Relevant
s   Listen to What Members Want
s   BUT, Company Secretary has responsibility for
    ensuring measures are fit for purpose

                                                    Slide 23
      THANK YOU
Contact Details
Matthew.Sugden@accentgroup.org
DD - 01274 536122




                                 Slide 24
Company Secretaries’
Conference 2009

                     S6
  Board development – identifying the gaps

   Speaker:      Carolyn Hirst
                 Board Member
                 Accent Group
                 and Consultant
                 Hirstworks
                 Matthew Sugden
                 Head of Legal Services
                 Accent Group
   Chair:        Belinda Porich
                 Head of London Region
                 National Housing Federation