Externally facilitated board effectiveness reviews enable boards to stand back and assess their strengths and areas for development through an independent lens and to identify the changes that will enable them to achieve their full potential.
Boards play a vital role in delivering the long-term success of an organisation, both through shaping its purpose and values and in ensuring sound performance on an ongoing basis.
The best boards never take success for granted. They are constantly seeking to improve; sometimes through steady incremental change, and at other times by embracing the risks of transformation and innovation.
Successful boards recognise that ‘business as usual’ nowadays involves operating globally in conditions of complexity, uncertainty and continuous change. Leading-edge businesses are committed to building financial capital but equally know that this is no longer sufficient on its own.
A focus on outcomes and behaviours
Our Board Polarities model focuses on both outcomes and behaviours, considering those in the boardroom and the wider business.
We look at how boards manage potentially competing priorities for time and focus. It explores the board’s role in setting strategy and then successfully implementing it; in balancing risk and entrepreneurship; and in directing a values-led organisation whilst securing reasonable financial returns to reward shareholders, employees and other key stakeholders.
Within the boardroom, the model goes on to look at how well individual members of the board perform their functional roles alongside their effectiveness as a team, together with their ability to lead the board successfully both in ‘normal’ times and in a crisis.
Features of Mazars’ approach to board effectiveness
- Focuses on outcomes in the business and boardroom and on boardroom behaviours, recognising that both are vital to a holistic assessment of board performance and potential
- A forward-looking view aimed at ensuring boards can unlock untapped potential for the benefit of the business
- An integrated developmental approach that helps individual board members to develop their skills and approach, as well as focusing on enhancing the board’s overall effectiveness
- Focuses on the changes that will have the greatest positive impact
- An approach that is designed to foster an ongoing culture of development within the boardroom
- Pays attention to securing the buy-in of the board to the process and to the resultant action plan in order to achieve sustainable results
- Recognises the importance of the facilitator(s) having credibility in the boardroom through a deep understanding of how boards work
- A thorough process that is designed to use board members’ valuable time effectively
- Assistance provided, if desired, on developing a three-year, cyclical approach to board evaluation