Cyber Risk Management: What a Board Should Be Asking

Something we keep coming across in our board reviews is cyber risk – and how a board can exercise oversight of this fast-moving and difficult-to-understand critical threat.  Most directors worry about the organisation’s exposure, especially when they sense it’s not a matter of “if” but “when”.  But few of them feel confident that their technical knowledge is sufficient to test…

How to Plan an Effective Board Meeting

Board meetings are odd: possibly in any other circumstances we would think it a bit crazy to expect humans to give unbroken concentration for hours on end. But when those same humans become directors (yes, most of them are human) we suspend that reasoning. We put a large group of people – some of them jet-lagged – together in a…

How to Chair a Good Board Meeting

“He’s great at chairing a meeting…” “She’s good at getting everyone to speak up, but somehow still manages to finish the meeting in time…” “He runs a good committee…” Those are some of the accolades we often hear voiced about the Chairs of boards and committees. But what is it that they are doing right?  On the other hand, we also…

What Does a Good Board Pack Look Like?

Nowadays board papers don’t arrive with a literal thump.  But often the impact is the same.  This month, to take a look at the perennial issue of board papers, we have invited as “guest editors” Board Intelligence: specialists in board packs and board portal providers. “I’ve opened too many board packs which give me a sinking feeling – and I’m not…

The Ins and Outs of Private Sessions for Non-Executives

Non-executives should meet by themselves from time to time without the executives.  It doesn’t matter what the type of Board – the principle applies whether you’re a FTSE 100 plc, a trustee board of a charity or a private company.  For some boards, it’s a routine discussion that has no negative effect on board dynamics, but a large number of…

8 Tips for Effective Succession Planning Every Board Should Consider

Refreshments please! Board composition these days is expected to be an expertly mixed cocktail of non-executives, made up of a lot of fresh ingredients along with the pickled ones. Succession planning for the Board is an art as much as a science. Take a good base of relevant skills, combine it with a healthy slug of board diversity and, for…