Data Driven Governance Insights – Continuity is the Key to Remaining Resilient

A common theme over our last few blog posts has been continuity, whether that be evaluation, education or development. The only way to see improvement is to keep coming back.

As we touched on in last month’s webinar (which you can watch here) resilience and governance go hand in hand. Kerri Rivett, CEO of Royal Freemasons and Board member of LASA, spoke about the need for directors and boards to have the ability to have dual skills, both monitoring risk on a daily basis whilst ensuring they take time for blue sky thinking and strategic planning. She went on to describe this as the ability to pivot, adapt and thrive, something that she and her executives and board believe in. In Kerri’s view this is a key element of resilient governance.

Building on from this, resilience and director development also go hand in hand. They are both integral to good governance and an overall positive experience on the board. Resilience isn’t built in a day, it takes time and commitment, it’s about fostering skills so that you have the capacity to learn, cope, adapt, and transform in the face of everyday events as well as shocks and stresses.

Through our governance data insights this month we’re showing how director development is so important for resilience. We have identified that there are crucial elements that need to be taken into account. These are both the director’s professional and sector relevant skills. We have also identified the importance of directors understanding their culture and contribution requirements. Our infographic highlights the average results from the Director Development and Skills Matrix evaluations.  This data is as a result of over 700 director contributions over the last three years. 

What we are seeing is that there is 11% lower sector specific skills and experience in directors when compared to their professional, culture and contribution skills and experience. Therefore, highlighting the importance of ongoing review, training and development in relation to the sector that the director is in.

Through Governance Evaluator’s convening role with many boards, we have discovered that organisations who engage in ongoing individual director review and development, in particular for areas relating to their sector knowledge and experience, describe an improvement by year two. They find improvement in their ability to be more discerning, more strategic and more aware of their top organisational risks. As discussed by our panel of CEO’s and Chairs in our July Webinar, click here to view. This therefore is a crucial piece for the evolution of a resilient board. 

Below is an example of how in the health and aged care sectors over the last three years when directors did target sector skills as their area of training there is an improvement in their results. 

Our findings in relation to this also align with a recent article by the Governance Institute of Australia, in which they state – “By 2025, governance professionals will need to be keeping pace with rapid changes and a broader set of issues affecting their organisations. That means they will have to continually maintain and improve their knowledge base and skill set.” They conclude the article with the summation that – “Overall, participants believed that a combination of experience and ongoing education was needed to build the level of awareness needed for the governance professional role.” You can read the full article here

If you are interested in getting involved in engaging with a program of continuous development and review, click here to find out more or contact our governance expert below to see how we can help you.