Selected strategic intelligence sources

In a recent post, I promised to look at some possible free or low-cost sources of intelligence gathering (external monitoring) that your non-profit board and/or management team can use to inform your strategic direction. This post delivers on that promise, using sources clustered under each category in the STEEPLE model. Your organisation will doubtless have… Continue reading Selected strategic intelligence sources

Adaptive Strategy

Continuous adjustment of strategy in the light of changing organisational context has been a recurring theme in my last three posts. This post offers something of a footnote to the earlier articles. The header image above provides a slightly different perspective on the ever-shifting point of decision. The time dimension is emphasised here in a… Continue reading Adaptive Strategy

Strategy and Risk: 2 sides of one coin

The argument that strategy and risk are two aspects of one governance activity has been highlighted by many pundits over time. In practice however, some non-profit boards still separate strategic planning from development and review of their risk register. My previous two posts (see links below) promoted the concept of continuous monitoring of the external… Continue reading Strategy and Risk: 2 sides of one coin

Continuous Reflective Governance

I’d like to amplify some points made in my previous post, which argued that directors need to continuously monitor their internal and external circumstances. The header image above illustrates the point that reflective governance requires ongoing monitoring and evaluation to determine new and emerging priorities (the EDM Governance Model), and that the data being analysed… Continue reading Continuous Reflective Governance

Looking outward and inward

Non-profit directors are not usually spies. They do need to gather and analyse ‘intelligence’ however, to inform their governance activities. This includes monitoring the external environment and internal systems, processes and performance. Business intelligence software and dashboards are available commercially. While some non-profits will be able to afford these, most smaller entities will seek free… Continue reading Looking outward and inward

Blockers or Enablers? The 3 lines of defence

Just as strategic mindsets can be framed in polarised pairs like Growth Vs Fixed, or Solution Vs Problem Oriented, risk management mindsets can also be described as Blocking or Enabling (see header illustration). While reducing any complex matter to a simple binary choice can lead to distorted thinking, when considering your risk mindset it is… Continue reading Blockers or Enablers? The 3 lines of defence

Diagnosis and Treatment in Leadership

I’ve long valued Bryan Whitefield’s insights and guidance on risk and adaptive leadership matters, and his recent article (highly recommended) on diagnosis and action at the Self and System levels, reminded me of another broad parallel I had noticed between health service and leadership concepts and processes. The ‘standard’ treatment process used by health practitioners… Continue reading Diagnosis and Treatment in Leadership

Your ‘ruling’ body

The history of leadership continues to be reflected in our language today. The board of directors is still sometimes referred to as the ‘ruling body’. Historically, the one who set the rules brought order to their community. Sometimes that order was imposed by force, and at other times by democratic processes, but either way, the… Continue reading Your ‘ruling’ body

Sledgehammer or scalpel? Governance capability development

(Part 3 – ‘Duty of Care, Skill and Diligence’ series) “I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.” Abraham Maslow While it may seem obvious that non-profit directors require a set of skills to perform their duties, elections or appointments… Continue reading Sledgehammer or scalpel? Governance capability development

Between Altruism and Greed

‘Self interest’ and ‘vested interests’ are central to governance of conflict of interest within non-profit organisations. Boards elected by members of a profession or industry rightly see their role as addressing member needs – often with a focus on members’ economic success or survival. While the conflict (or perception of conflict) between a director’s personal… Continue reading Between Altruism and Greed