Our research has revealed some common concerns expressed by directors:
“I get shut down for asking questions.”
“Disagreement is met with hostility.”
“One director has a clear conflict of interest but the Chair says it is fine so we just have to put up with it.”
“One director is acting on instructions of someone outside the board.”
“A few directors control everything and decisions are made outside the meeting. We just seem like a rubber stamp and have to go along with it.”
“A director is clearly bullying management staff and interfering. But no one wants to confront him.”
“The chair is out of their depth and being manipulated by others.”
“A couple of strong, argumentative personalities dominate discussion and decision making.”
“We are so slow to make a decision and when we do it is reactionary and too late.”
“As a group we have difficulty implementing decisions so we just revisit them.”
These social dysfunctions are usually not picked up in governance reviews because they are not elements of board functioning related to regulatory compliance, legal structure or policy.
In this context, leadership character is foundational for effective decision making and good governance. As a leadership trait, character is the one area of board functioning that cannot be delegated to others or assigned to an expert.
We call our approach INGENIUM* which is latin for “innate character”.
At The Colloquium Group we help boards and senior executive teams govern with quality and vitality.