When asked "what is governance?" credit union board members have historically answered with this statement: setting policy. While setting policy is indeed a part of governance, governance as a discipline is much more broad and involved than such a simple statement would indicate. Governance, in its totality, is establishing the process of governing, and then living in that process - hopefully to the long-term health and success of the organization for the benefits of its "owners."
The problem for so many credit unions with respect to governance, however, is that governance participants only see governance as as a policy-setting endeavor, with perhaps the occasional need to assess the performance of the CEO (or hire a CEO if the seat is open). But so what if a board only sees governance as setting policy? What's the worst that could happen? In short, unchecked organizational risk-taking. By simplifying governance to a two-word description, boards miss the fact that governance processes should combine to set not only relevant institutional objectives, but also appropriate boundaries for risk that include, but also go beyond, policy.
If you feel even remotely uneasy about the strength of your governance backbone it may be time to spend some time on governance. We can help.
Governance Development Projects
We have worked on a variety of credit union governance projects, including:
- Governance model development/implementation, including Policy Governance, Governance Framework, and Principles Framework
- Governance policy development
- Governance performance assessment
- Board succession planning and succession readiness
- CEO succession planning and succession readiness
- Governance training and skill development
Have a Governance Project In Mind?
Do you have a project in need of consulting support? Complete our proposal request form to let us know what you have in mind, or call us at (888) 217-5988 to discuss the details via a phone call.