Board Leadership

Cover image for Vol. 2014 Issue 136

Edited By: Caroline Oliver

Online ISSN: 1542-7862

Board Leadership's Article Index


BOARD LEADERSHIP ARTICLE INDEX

Number 1, May/June 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


First Things First – An imaginative exercise for revitalizing your mission
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Girl Scout Council Learns What Kind of Help Counts the Most
by John Carver

Just How Long Should Board Meetings Be?
by John Carver

Any Questions?
by John Carver

Norman Barth, Executive Director of Lutheran World Relief - Clear policy statements can free you to act creatively
by Norman Barth
Lutheran World Relief (LWR) is an international development agency based in New York. It began with relief efforts following World War II. Today it distributes many millions of dollars in nonsectarian aid and expertise in Asia, Latin America, and Africa. For several years, the board of directors of LWR has committed its wisdom and wishes to clearly written policy statements. Of those policies that instruct the chief executive, some capture the board's vision (Ends); some clarify the boundary of acceptability for staff action (Executive Limitations). Here, Dr. Norman Barth, executive director of LWR, spells out the effect of implementing this principle in his organization.


Number 2, July/August 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Creating a Single Voice: The Prerequisite to Board Leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Of Homeless Cats and Governance: Distinguishing Customers from Owners
by John Carver

Controlling the Cost of Staffing Board Committees
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Howard Moreaux and Leslie Tremaine
by Howard Moreaux and Leslie Tremaine
Jefferson Parish Human Services Authority (JPHS) was formed as a legislative demonstration project in 1990 to govern mental health, mental retardation, and substance abuse services for an area adjacent to New Orleans. Its 12-person board is appointed by the parish council and the governor's office. The board is primarily a grass-roots group, composed of people with strong personal interests in service issues rather than extensive policy or governing board experience. As a relatively new organization, JPHS'S board was able to attempt the new governance approach before conventional precedents were strongly established. The board has used the long-range focus of Policy Governance to balance the day-to-day crisis management demands of establishing itself in the often high charged and reactive environment of Louisiana politics. Mr. Moreaux and Dr. Tremaine are board chair and executive director, respectively.


Number 3, September/October 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Painful Lessons: Learning from the United Way Misfortune
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

The Importance of Trust in the Board-CEO Relationship
by John Carver

A Few Tips for the Chairperson
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

John Guy, First Vice-President of Investments, Dean Witter Reynolds
by John Guy
John Guy is a Certified Financial Planner and First Vice-president of Investments with the Indianapolis branch of Dean Witter Reynolds, Inc. His experience with investment committees and boards concerning investment policy spans an array of nonprofit organizations. Mr Guy is currently writing a book on the investment responsibilities of trustees.


Number 4, November/December 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Free Your Board and Staff Through Executive Limitations
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Creates Policy and Stops Worrying
by John Carver

Is Your Board in a Rut? Shake Up Your Routine!
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Guest Presentations – Susan L. Golden, Fund-Raising Consultant, The Golden Group
by Susan L. Golden
The Golden Group is a fund-raising consultation firm based in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr Golden provides counsel to non-profit organizations in education, health care, economic development, the arts, and social services. Dr Golden's consulting practice specializes in helping organizations secure grants. Over 90% of her client proposals are funded.

Number 5, January 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Evaluating the Mission Statement
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver
I am indebted to those organizations that submitted mission statements in response to my requests in Issues 2 and 3. Thanks for bravely allowing your work to be examined according to the principles of the Policy Governance model. Space does not allow me to use all the mission statements sent in. For statements I received before December 1, I have commented directly to those who responded

Raising One Board from the Dead
by John Carver

Creating an effective mission statement for your organization
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Governance as parenting
by Jeffrey Davis, PhD
As a teacher and practitioner for 20 years, he has used his knowledge of human behavior to help systems - whether individuals, families, or work teams - function better. In addition to his organizational work in Team Building and in Total Quality Management, he has recently begun consulting with boards on learning the principles and concepts of Policy Governance. Dr. Davis practices in the Indianapolis area.


Number 6, March 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Fiduciary responsibility confronting the myth, creating the reality through effective board leadership
by John Carver

Crafting policy to guide your organizations budget
by John Carver

Crafting policy to safeguard your organizations actual fiscal condition
by John Carver

A simple matter of comparison: monitoring fiscal management in your organization
by John Carver


Number 7, May 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Giving, Getting, and Governing Finding a Place for Fundraising Among the Responsibilities of Leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Running Afoul of Governance
by John Carver

Owning Your Agenda: A Long-Term view Is the Key to Taking Charge
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Margaret Tyndall, PhD., CEO, YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh
by Margaret Tyndall

Number 8, July 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

Achieving meaningful diversity in the boardroom
by John Carver

Never cast in stone: flexible policy supports management - and saves board time
by John Carver

Handling complaints: using negative feedback to strengthen board policy
by John Carver


Number 9, September 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When board members act as staff advisers
by John Carver

Delegating bravely
by John Carver

When Board Members Are the Only Staff in Sight
by John Carver

Herbert Paine, consultant
by Herbert Paine
Herbert Paine is president of Paine Consulting Services, an Oakland, California-based enterprise specializing in organization development, strategic planning, and marketing. A nationally recognized expert on nonprofit organization management, Mr. Paine is former executive director of United Way of California.


Number 10, November 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Onlin
e

Redefining board self-evaluation: The key to keeping on track
by John Carver

Crafting the board job description
by John Carver

Planning the board's conduct
by John Carver

Living up to your own expectations: implementing self-evaluation to make a difference in your organization
by John Carver


Number 11, January/ February 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

Can boards meet their obligations to funders, accreditors, and the law and still practice sound leadership?. Protecting governance from law, funders, and accreditors
by John Carver

Board Leadership
by John Carver

One Board Puts Teeth in its Attendance Requirements. Is Your Board Having Difficulty Reaching a Quorum?
by John Carver

Tips for creating advisory boards and committees
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

James P Cramer, CEO, American Institute of Architects
by James P Cramer
James P. Cramer is an educator and management and communications consultant. He is executive vice president and CEO of the American Institute of Architects in Washington, D.C., and is the former president of the American Architectural Foundation.

Number 12, March/April 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Should Anybody Be in Charge?. Making Hierarchy Work Exercising Appropriate Board Authority in the Service of Mission
by John Carver

Board leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

To tell or not to tell: One CEO learns the right way to inform her board
by John Carver

Overheard at the workshop
by John Carver

Keep Your Essential Board Documents Handy. Keeping a Board Book That Works
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 13, May 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Protecting Board Integrity from the Renegade Board Member
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Learns How Polling Moves Meetings Along
by John Carver

Nine Steps to Implementing Policy Governance
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 14, July 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The Executive Committee: Turning a Governance Liability into an Asset
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Fails to Follow Its Own Monitoring Policy - and Courts Fiscal Disaster
by John Carver

Policy, Not Personality: Ensuring Governance Integrity Through a CEO Transition
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Alton Crews, Director of the Leadership Academy of the Southern Regional Education Board
by Alton Crews
Alton Crews' educational career spans forty-five years. During that period, he has served as teacher, principal, deputy superintendent, and, for more than three decades, superintendent in four different communities. He is the current director of the Leadership Academy for the Southern Regional Education Board.


Number 15, September 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Elected Boards: Meeting Their Special Governance Challenge
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Abstracting Up: Discovering the Big Issues Among the Trivia
by John Carver

Calculating the Real Costs of Governance
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Beyond Philosophy: The Final Word on Ends vs. Means
by John Carver


Number 16, November 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What Do You Want from Your CEO? How to Express Board Concerns in Unmistakable Language
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Reforming Untrustworthy Boards
by John Carver


Number 17, January/ February 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Pinning down board process and the role of the chairperson
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Are you sure your minutes are really Your minutes? one board learns the hard way to read the fine print
by John Carver


Number 18, March/April 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Ownership
by John Carver

Understanding the special board-ownership relationship
by John Carver

Determining who your owners are
by John Carver

Connecting with the ownership
by John Carver

Connecting with the ownership
by John Carver

What to do if you find a consumer on your board
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 19, May/June 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Policy governance is not a "hands off" model
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A team of equals
by John Carver

Boards lead best when services, programs, and curricula are transparent
by John Carver

Any questions
by John Carver


Number 20, July/August 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Policies "Я" US
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

The CEO's objectives are not proper board business
by John Carver

Shaping up your bylaws
by John Carver


Number 21, September/October 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The misguided focus on administrative cost
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Competent boards can't have incompetent CEOs…not for long
by John Carver

What happens to conventional documents under policy governance?
by John Carver

Number 22, November/December 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Governing in the shadow of a founder-CEO
by John Carver

On a Personal Note

by John Carver

A rose is a rose is a CEO
by John Carver

Who is in charge: Is your organization too staff-driven? too volunteer-driven?
by John Carver

Number 23, January/ February 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Recruiting leaders: What to look for in new board members
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A community board struggles with the cost of its results
by John Carver

Boards should not be the final authority but the Initial authority
by John Carver

Number 24, March/April 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When bad governance is required
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

From many boards to one: Incomplete merging confuses boards and staff
by John Carver

Board approvals and monitoring are very different actions
by John Carver

Michael Conduff, City Manager, Bryan, Texas
by Michael Conduff
Michael Conduff is city manager of Bryan, Texas, a community of 60,000 people. He has also served as city manager of Manhattan, Kansas, and of Pittsburg, Kansas, and he currently serves on the board of Texas City Management Association. Bryan began implementing Policy Governance at little more than a year ago.

Number 25, May/June 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Families of Boards Part I: Federations
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

How you can tell when your board is not using policy governance
by John Carver

Any Questions

by John Carver

Number 26, July/August 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Evaluating the CEO an effective approach to ensure future organizational success
by John Carver

Putting CEO evaluation in perspective
by John Carver

Getting it right from the start: The CEO's job description
by John Carver

Do you really have a CEO?
by John Carver

Self-assessment exercise 1: Your board's readiness for CEO Evaluation
by John Carver

Self-assessment exercise 2: Evaluating your evaluating
by John Carver

Should your CEO be a board member?
by John Carver

Off limits: What not to do in your CEO evaluation
by John Carver

A CEO Self-evaluation checklist
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Number 27, September/October 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Families of boards part II: Holding companies
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A holding company board learns that different organizational levels deserve different questions
by John Carver

An ends-means exercise for your board
by John Carver

Number 28, November/December 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The "any reasonable interpretation" rule: Leap of faith or sine Qua non of delegation?
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Sometimes you have to fire your chair
by John Carver

Traditional governance's flawed alternatives to the "any reasonable interpretation" rule
by John Carver

Diane Tiveron, Attorney, Corey J. Hogan and Associates, Amherst, New York
by Diane Tiveron
Corey J. Hogan and Associates provides legal counsel to People, Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides services to people with disabling conditions in seven counties in western New York. Headquartered in Williamsville, a suburb of Buffalo, People, Inc. has 1,200 employees and a $35 million annual budget. The organization began implementing Policy Governance a year and a half ago.

Number 29, January/ February 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


If you want it done right, delegate it!
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

What if the committee chair just wants to know?
by John Carver

CEOs! guiding your board toward better governance
by John Carver

Number 30, March/April 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Your board's market surrogate obligation
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A board learns that its ambiguous self-identity cannot be ignored
by John Carver

Giving measurement its due in policy governance
by John Carver

Honey, I shrunk the policies
by John Carver

Cindra Smith, Director of Education, Community College League of California
by Cindra Smith
Cindra Smith is director of education for the Community College League of California, a nonprofit state association serving California's seventy-one local community college districts. A large part of her job is to provide education programs for the seventy-one locally elected governing boards in California's community college system. I asked Ms. Smith to share her observations about the factors she thought were important as boards moved to adopt a Policy Governance approach on their board.

Number 31, May/June 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When the founding parent stays on the board
by John Carver
In Issue 22 (Nov.-Dec. 1995), I wrote of the dilemma faced by a board when an organization's founding parent is the CEO. In this article I want to discuss the dilemma when the founding parent is a member of the board. By no means do all founders behave as portrayed in this article; many graciously adapt to their new role as board member. This article is written about those situations in which the transition has not been so adeptly managed.

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

What to do when staff take complaints directly to board members

by John Carver

The board of a trade association establishes ends policies
by John Carver
To help make the ends topic more concrete, in this and each of the next three issues of Board Leadership there will be an article about ends policies for a specific type of organization. Even if your organization is not one of those featured, you will be able to glean generally applicable principles that can be easily translated to your own organization.

Miriam Carver, governance consultant and author
by Miriam Carver
My wife, Miriam Carver, is not only an experienced Policy Governance consultant, she also teaches theory and implementation to other consultants. She has coauthored two books on the model, Reinventing Your Board: A Step-by-Step Guide to Implementing Policy Governance and A New Vision of Board Leadership: Governing the Community College, as well as three booklets in the Jossey-Bass CarverGuide series. In this Guest Presentation, Miriam speaks from her experience with thousands of board members on three continents.

Number 32, July/August 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What to do when your policies are all in place
by John Carver

All volunteers can be good board members - not!
by John Carver

A public school board establishes ends policies
by John Carver
This article is the second in a series of four, each examining ends development for a different kind of organization. Remember that ends policies are those in which the board describes the intended results of the organization, for whom those results are to be achieved, and the cost or relative worth of those results. In the last issue, I used a trade association as an example. In this issue, I'll discuss ends of an organization important to everyone - the public school system.

Any Questions
by John Carver

Number 33, September/October 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Boards should have their own voice
by John Carver

Another year of exciting gains
by John Carver

A board enshrines policy governance in its bylaws
by John Carver
Members of a nonprofit board once asked how they might require the use of Policy Governance in their bylaws. In this article, I consider the advisability of such a bylaws provision and what the nature of such a requirement might be.

A city council creates ends policies
by John Carver
Nowhere is governance reform more needed than in government. In this article, I continue with the third of my four-part series on creating ends policies - those policies established by the board that describe the results to be achieved by the organization, who is to receive the results, and the costs of these results. This time we will focus on the ends of municipal government. Let us examine the case of a city council with a mayor who operates chiefly as the chairperson and a city manager who is the CEO.

Number 34, November/December 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What to do with your board's philosophy, values, and beliefs
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Is policy governance an all-or-nothing choice?
by John Carver

A hospital board creates ends policies
by John Carver
Hospitals literally hold the power of life and death over most of us at some point in our lives. The boards that govern these complex organizations, particularly in the United States and Canada, face staggering fiscal, political, and liability issues. In this fourth - and last - installment in a series on the development of ends policies, I illustrate the daunting task of creating ends policies as the board of a nonprofit hospital in a mid-size community might approach it.

A report on Bryan, Texas
by Carol Gabanna, Denise Paszkiewicz, and Catherine M. Raso

Number 35, January/ February 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

The ultimate test of the board's ends leadership
by John Carver

Policy governance goes to the Netherlands
by John Carver

If your board isn't worth the cost of competence, it isn't worth much
by John Carver

Does your board drive away its most promising members?
by John Carver

Riding the bus with policy governance
by Roger L. Frick

Number 36, March/April 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Leading, following, and the wisdom to know the difference
by John Carver

Bullies on the board
by John Carver

A board learns that proper policy categories aren't just a clerical nicety
by John Carver

Policy governance won't work because…
by John Carver
Introductory Policy Governance workshops are usually mind-bending experiences for persons new to the concept. It is hard for thinking people not to find the step-by-step reasoning compelling. In a choice between the hodgepodge of practices that make up traditional governance and the simple, clear logic of Policy Governance, there is really no contest.

Barbara A. Greene on how a school board turned itself around
by Barbara A. Greene
In 1995 a school board approached Barbara Greene, a consultant to nonprofit and public boards, for help. The relations between the board and the superintendent of schools had broken down, and their problems were spilling over into the public arena. Citizens were losing confidence in the ability of the board and the superintendent, and the media was watching and reporting on their every move. Recently, Board Leadership's managing editor, Paula Stacey, talked with Greene about her experience in using the Policy Governance model to help turn around a troubled board.

Number 37, May/June 1998
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Why not set your quorum requirement at 100 percent?
by John Carver

Retraction
by John Carver

Beware the "quality" fetish
by John Carver
A recent consulting experience with a hospital board brought to my attention once again the insidious nature of a very popular concept: quality. This article recounts what I advised the board, its medical staff, and its administrators about that omnipresent, rarely questioned ideal called quality.

Is policy governance the One best way?
by John Carver
This question was raised at a recent workshop. It reminds me of an article with that question as a title published a few years ago in a prominent Canadian journal. Unfortunately, the author's failure to understand Policy Governance rendered his commentary of little value. But it is a legitimate question, though sometimes I hear it asked with an undertone of “surely you can't be saying this is the only way for boards to operate!” So, is Policy Governance the one best way?

Communicating with all members about results
by Sandra Gillis

Number 38, July/August 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


For school failure, the buck doesn't stop; it just fades away
by John Carver

Reining in a runaway chair
by John Carver

Group responsibility - requisite for good governance
by John Carver

Building a board from the ground up
by Rebecca Jamieson
In 1989 the Six Nations of the Grand River, a first-nation community in Canada, faced an interesting challenge: the federal government was planning to give them control of the local schools, and so they had to set about creating a school board. After much investigation, the community decided to use Policy Governance. Rebecca Jamieson, who was involved in this effort and who has been involved with other boards that use Policy Governance, talks about her experience.

Number 39, September/October 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Onlin
e

The mechanics of direct inspection monitoring
by John Carver

And as for the corporate board…
by John Carver

Your auditor works for you
by John Carver
I dealt with a board sorely in need of reconsidering how it thought of its annual audit. Some board members treated the audit as an arcane, uninteresting, mechanical formality that had little to do with them. They were quite happy to let the “bean counters” on the board deal with the audit. (On another board, where such “bored” members were in the majority, the governing body regularly - and, to me, frighteningly - left all choices about auditors to the CEO!) This Case in Point recounts much of the discussion I had in trying to convince this board to assume a new perspective about the external audit.

Why is conceptual wholeness so difficult for boards?
by John Carver

Number 40, November/December 1998
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Implementing policy governance the slow way
by Brian Mitchell
In 1989, the Edmonton (Alberta) Catholic School Division - a publicly funded Catholic school division - began a slow and painstaking process of implementing Policy Governance. Though all involved were aware that in principle Policy Governance is best implemented quickly and completely, this board, which had been in existence for 110 years, needed more time. Finally, in 1997, the switch was completed. Where did the board find the discipline to keep moving toward Policy Governance? Brian Mitchell, who has been on the board since 1992, explains it was part necessity, part patience, and part dedication to pursuing the board's mission. The division's ends policies appear in the sidebar on page 2.

Mission statement checklist
by John Carver

Thoughts on the Edmonton catholic school division's mission and ends statements
by John Carver

Watch out for misleading interpretations of governance research
by John Carver

What is good governance and where does it come from?
by Randee Loucks
In her position as the manager of trustee development for the Southern Ontario Library Service, Randee, Loucks is responsible for making sure that library governing boards do the best job possible. In her work, she has learned a lot about what it takes to govern well and the role polices and a good model can play. Board Leadership's managing editor, Paula Stacey, talked with Loucks about these issues.

Number 41, January/ February 1999
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Making the commitment to policy governance
by Raymond Lemieux

Can a board establish ends policies without identifying its owners first?
by John Carver
Board Leadership recently talked with Matt Madonna, president of the Southwest Division of the American Cancer Society, about the organization's transition to Policy Governance.

Nine steps to implementing policy governance
by John Carver

Who sets the board agenda?
by John Carver

Number 42, March/April 1999
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Monitoring is the best policy
by Ervin Brinker
Two years ago the board of Summit Pointe, a community mental health authority in Battle Creek, Michigan, began implementing Policy Governance. The board completed the drafting of its ends policies in the summer of 1998. But well before the ends policies were completed, the board implemented a comprehensive approach to monitoring its policies and its performance that it is following rigorously. Board Leadership asked the CEO of Summit Pointe to explain this monitoring approach and how it is working. In Carver on the Case (page 4), John Carver comments on it.

The Summit Pointe Experience
by John Carver

Living up to your own expectations
by John Carver

Helping boards help each other
by Teresa Durham
One of the keys to the success of the effort to bring Policy Governance to Battle Creek is the use of volunteer trainers to assist boards as they implement the model. Teresa Durham has worked as a trainer for four years, helping boards make the transition to Policy Governance. Also, with the help of fellow trainers, Teresa facilitates monthly Carver Connection meetings at which boards can get together, share ideas, and learn to help each other. Recently Board Leadership spoke with Teresa about her work, what it involves, and why it is so valuable.

Number 43, May/June 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Finding unity and strength through board diversity
by Leslie Tremaine
When Louisiana's Jefferson Parish Human Services Authority was first created nine years ago, its board was made up of a fairly traditional group of people - the kind, says executive director Leslie Tremaine, who “typically get named by folks to do things like this.” But in the intervening years the makeup of the board changed considerably so that it is now truly diverse. This change didn't happen on its own; it took a conscious effort on the part of the board. Tremaine describes how the group went about achieving board diversity and how this diversity is making a difference.

What can boards do to ensure that they are providing full representation of an organization's ownership?
by John Carver
Recently Mary Jo Czaplewski, CEO of the National Council on Family Relations, posed the following question on the Policy Governance Forum Web site. For readers of Board Leadership, John Carver offers his thoughts in response.

Achieving meaningful diversity in the boardroom
by John Carver

Number 44, July/August 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Understanding and linking with the moral ownership of your organization
by John Carver
The Policy Governance Fieldbook, from which this article was adapted, explores the real-life experiences of eleven organizations that are applying the Policy Governance model. In choosing which organizations to include, the authors looked for a range of organizations that had made varied degrees of progress in implementing the model. Possessing a wide range of experience with the model, the authors are Caroline Oliver, general editor, Mike Conduff, Susan Edsall, Carol Gabanna, Randee Loucks, Denise Paszkiewicz, Catherine Raso and Linda Stier. This article is adapted from a chapter on one of the most challenging and potentially fulfilling aspects of using Policy Governance: Identifying and linking with owners.

A CEO wonders how to organize functions under policy governance
by Bob Biles
The Following Discussion comes directly from the Policy Governance Web site. Because it opened up issues regarding the management implications of Policy Governance - something of potential interest to readers that isn't usually addressed in Board Leadership - we are publishing the discussion in full, including John Carver's contributions. Also, for Board Leadership readers only, John Carver provides further insight and comment. We thank Bob Biles and Michael Stanger for giving us permission to use their contributions.

Our commitment to enforcing good policy governance
by David Stockman
David Stockman, senior vice president of Lawry's Restaurants, Inc., chairs the board of the California Restaurant Association (CRA). The association represents California's $28.5 billion restaurant industry. The CRA board reached a pivotal point on March 8, 1999, as it adopted new, carefully crafted policies to put the Policy Governance model into effect. Here are Stockman's introductory words at the March 8 board meeting. We include them to illustrate one chair's conscientious effort to remind his colleagues, gently but firmly, not only of the commitment to discipline the board has adopted but also of the obligation the board has given him to enforce that discipline.

Number 45, September/October 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Just how should boards communicate with owners?
by Eileen Kradel
In the Last Issue of Board Leadership, the article “Understanding and Linking with the Moral Ownership of Your Organization” explored what it means for boards to embrace their moral accountability to owners. The article pointed out that linking with owners - with the people for whom the board members act as trustees - is one of the main jobs boards take on under Policy Governance. What does this mean in action? What does this linkage really look like? To address these questions, Board Leadership asked the chair of the board of trustees of Westark College in Little Rock, Arkansas, to describe how the board set about the work of linking with owners. Westark is new to Policy Governance; the board adopted it formally in early 1999 and met for the first time as a Policy Governance board in May. As Eileen Kradel describes, connecting with owners is a defining feature of the work of adopting and implementing the model.

The Westark College Board
by John Carver

Policy governance and school boards? You've got to be kidding!
by Linda J. Dawson and Dr. Randy Quinn
Linda J. Dawson is president of the Aspen Group International, Inc.; Randy Quinn is a founding partner of the Aspen Group. As former executives at the Colorado Association of School Boards, the authors tried numerous times to interest members in Policy Governance. Their story reveals that perseverance can pay off. The authors also share insights on implementing Policy Governance that will be helpful to readers on all kinds of boards. Dawson and Quinn are hosts of an upcoming conference in Hilton Head that will focus on all aspects of using Policy Governance. They can be contacted at aspengrpintl@csn.net or (303) 478-0125.

Number 46, November/December 1999
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Linking with owners: The dos and don'ts
by Jannice Moore
In the past two issues of Board Leadership, the feature articles explored first the imperative under Policy Governance of linking with your organization's owners and then how one board went about this work. Now, in the last of our articles on ownership linkage, Jannice Moore, an independent consultant and coach to governing boards, offers some practical tips for ensuring that the ways you reach out to owners will yield the kind of in-depth information necessary to shape effective ends policies.

Why only the CEO can interpret the board's ends and executive limitations policies
by John Carver
In policy governance, the board instructs the CEO with ends policies and with executive limitations policies. These policies are ordinarily few and brief, and hence the language used by the board in these policies is of utmost importance. One aspect of Policy Governance that many boards struggle with is that after taking so much care in crafting policies, they have to grant the CEO the exclusive right to interpret their words. John Carver looks at how one board tackled this issue.

A board member's approach to the job
by John Carver
One of the reasons a board member's job is so difficult is that “the job” is essentially a group responsibility. In fact, it is hard to discuss how an individual is to approach a group task. Yet each board member has a responsibility to come with an effective mind-set, to carry out his or her part of preparation and participation, and to take responsibility for the group. These are not always easy tasks. Here is some advice on the frame of mind and individual preparations necessary for any board member to play an effective role in creating a productive board. (This advice is adapted from Your Roles and Responsibilities as a Board Member, Carver Guide No. 2, pp. 13-17).

Profile of a board member
by Steve Engle and Jerome Andrews
Steve Engle and Jerome Andrews of the Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) present here a profile they devised to instruct their board's nominating committee when seeking new members. In commenting on their purpose in developing this profile, Engle and Andrews observed, “Board members are trustees for the membership and consequently must bear initial responsibility for the integrity of governance. The board is responsible for its own development, its own job design, its own discipline, and its own performance”. Further, they said, and the board agreed, that “in order to recruit quality members to the ALOA board of directors, the board should be sure to let candidates know before they come on the board that the system used is Policy Governance. We must let our prospective new members know how the board sees the job of governance. They can then make an informed choice about their willingness to serve”.

Number 47, January/ February 2000
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What happens when a federation board adopts policy governance?
by John Carver
Most of the boards discussed in Board Leadership govern single, independent organizations. However, as John Carver pointed out in the May-June 1996 issue (no. 25), Policy Governance applies as well to “families” of boards or federations in which multiple organizations own a single organization. When federations adopt Policy Governance, they wrestle with many of the same issues that single organizations do, but they also face some special challenges - challenges that are worthwhile to consider because they shed light on important aspects of implementing Policy Governance that are relevant to all boards. To gain insight into these challenges and ways in which federation boards can address them, Board Leadership spoke recently to Anne Dalton, director of governance and strategy development for the Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc. We first asked her to describe how the Association is structured and what led its board to adopt Policy Governance.

A staff ethics committee wants special access to the board - what does the board want?
by John Carver

When owners and customers are the same people
by John Carver
One of the issues raised in the interview with Anne Dalton in this issue was the importance of sorting out who are customers and who are owners of an organization. This is important for all boards but can of course be especially difficult for membership associations and federations where there is 100 percent overlap between the two groups. Here are some insights from John Carver on the owner-customer confusion.

AMAROK policy on board committee structure
by John Carver
This is the first in a series of articles in which John Carver will point out improvements needed in policies submitted by Board Leadership readers. In this first article, however, he felt the policy to be reviewed is so good as to be held up as an example to others. He is grateful to AMAROK, a Phoenix-based trade association of drywall manufacturers, for allowing him to use its governance process policy, titled “Board Committee Structure”.

Number 48, March/April 2000
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Two people in the CEO role: Can it work?
by Catherine Raso
At times, the CEO job may look so challenging and appear to require such a wide breadth of knowledge and experience that boards are moved to ask, “Can one person really do it all?” This is when many boards consider actually putting two people in this position rather than one. Although it is possible using Policy Governance to delegate the CEO role to two individuals, it requires an enormous amount of discipline to avoid the problems that inevitably come with such a decision. Policy Governance consultant Catherine Raso recently worked with a board that was struggling with this decision and has done a lot of thinking about the pros and cons of the dual CEO. We asked her to share what she has learned with Board Leadership.

The CEO's role in policy governance

by John Carver and Miriam Mayhew Carver

Exercising appropriate board authority in the service of mission
by John Carver

Can boards tell CEOs to stick to their own budgets?
by John Carver

Number 49, May/June 2000
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Policy governance demands that we choose our words carefully
by Gary Davis
Gary Davis is a Policy Governance consultant who regularly participates in the Policy Governance Forum on the Web site www.carvergovernance.com. Pursuant to a dialogue he conducted with another participant on the topic of language, we asked him to write this article.

It's not the board's role to act as a management consultant to the CEO
by John Carver

Good governance is not about control - it's about remote control
by John Carver
Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman of the Gallup Organization have written a challenging book for managers, First, Break All the Rules (Simon & Schuster, 1999). Their conclusions are built on twenty-five years' research with over a million employees. Whereas the authors deal with many facets that they found to characterize great managers, in this article I want to relate one of their points to principles of Policy Governance.

Number 50, July/August 2000
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Policy governance as a social contract

by John Carver
Last year, John Carver spent time in England revisiting the work of some famous thinkers on society and governance. Here he explores how these philosophers can inform the practice of using Policy Governance to exercise board leadership.

One board's policy on evaluating its CEO
by John Carver

Creating your policy governance tool kit
by Caroline Oliver
The Board that is working hard to use Policy Governance faces a special challenge when searching for tools to help it do its work. It needs to make sure that the tools it chooses and the tools it develops on its own are truly a help and not a hindrance in getting the full benefits of Policy Governance. Caroline Oliver, a governance consultant based in Canada and editor of The Policy Governance Fieldbook Practical Lessons, Tips, and Tools from the Experiences of Real-World Boards (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999), sheds some light on what kind of tools are helpful and how to choose wisely.

Number 51, September/October 2000
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Sustaining policy governance
by Michael A. Conduff
Most boards work very hard to implement Policy Governance, but what happens years later when most or all of the members involved in that work have been replaced? Because Policy Governance is as much about how board members approach their jobs as it is about policy, ensuring that Policy Governance lives on is a major challenge. We asked Mike Conduff, board consultant and CEO of an organization whose board has been struggling with the question of how to ensure the sustainability of Policy Governance, to consider what it takes to meet this challenge. Mike can be contacted at mconduff@myriad.net.

John Carver tightens up a boards' ends policies
by John Carver

Boards behaving badly
by Caroline Oliver

Number 52, November/December 2000
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Cultivating good board manners
by Caroline Oliver
In the previous issue of Board Leadership, governance consultant Caroline Oliver outlined the kind of “bad behavior” that boards typically engage in and how it can interfere with the board's ability to operate effectively as a team. Here she turns the tables and looks at what constitutes good board manners and how they can be cultivated.

One organization carefully sets forth what difference it wants to make
by John Carver

Rethinking the executive committee
by John Carver
Many people who are familiar with Policy Governance are aware that John Carver believes that executive committees are widely overused. However, that does not necessarily mean that Policy Governance absolutely forbids their use. Here John Carver clarifies what is wrong with executive committees, suggests ways to avoid them, and outlines how, if absolutely necessary, they can be used wisely and without undermining the benefits of Policy Governance.

Number 53, January/ February 2001
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Meaningful monitoring
by Jannice Moore
One of the most important and most challenging aspects of implementing Policy Governance is monitoring whether and how well the policies are being put into practice. Most boards choose to monitor their policies by means of an internal report written by the CEO that provides evidence of compliance. Here Jannice Moore, a full-time governance consultant who has helped a wide variety of boards in Canada implement Policy Governance and who acts as “governance coach” to many others, gives some advice on how CEOs might improve these internal monitoring reports, highlighting common pitfalls and explaining how they can be avoided. In the next issue of Board Leadership, she will discuss monitoring issues from the board's perspective.

A public utilities board's executive limitations policy
by John Carver
An ends policy of Colorado Springs Utilities (CSU) was reviewed in Issue 51 of Board Leadership (Sept.-Oct. 2000). At that time, John Carver promised to examine one more policy from this public utility board. So here is CSU's policy regarding water rights. (The company is engaged in providing other utility services, but this policy relates only to the water portion of its job).

Taking policy governance to the mainstream
by Caroline Oliver
Have you ever expressed your enthusiasm for Policy Governance only to be met by a blank stare? Do you wonder what could be done to create greater awareness of the advantages of Policy Governance both for your own board and for others? Caroline Oliver, Policy Governance consultant, general editor of The Policy Governance Fieldbook, and designated chair of the soon-to-be-launched Policy Governance Association, looks to the world of high technology for some answers.

Number 54, March/April 2001
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Meaningful monitoring: The board's view
by Jannice Moore
In the last issue of Board Leadership, governance consultant Jannice Moore described how CEOs can create useful reports that would provide evidence of compliance with board policies. In this issue, she looks at monitoring from the board's perspective.

What a well-worded ends policy looks lik by John Carver

A "reasonable interpretation of ends": What exactly does it mean?
by Michael Conduff and Denise Paszkiewicz
What does it mean to engage in a “reasonable interpretation” of a board's ends policies? Is there a particular process a CEO should go through? What's the best way to make sure that the interpretation is indeed reasonable and that it is meaningful and detailed enough to allow the CEO and the staff to get on with the business of making the ends actually happen? To help address these questions, Michael Conduff, a consultant and city manager in Bryan, Texas, and Denise Paszkiewicz, director of program development at People Inc., describe the process their organizations use and why.

Number 55, May/June 2001
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Does policy governance give too much authority to the CEO?
by John Carver

Getting personal
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance may supply a coherent framework for board work, but even the most conscientious board must still find a way to manage the personal dynamics that can determine how well people work together. In this article, governance consultant Caroline Oliver presents one useful approach for understanding and working effectively with different personality types.

Clarifying the distinction between owners and customers
by John Carver
In BL54, John Carver reviewed the ends policy of the fictional American Association of Trekking Outfitters (AATO). (That policy was actually a composite culled from several organizations.) In this issue, Carver critiques a governance process policy of the same make-believe federation that deals with the question of distinguishing owners and customers. For more information on the owner-customer distinction, see two articles in BL 18, “Understanding the Special Board-Ownership Relationship” and “Connecting with the Ownership”.

Number 56, July/August 2001
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Can things go horribly wrong for boards that use policy governance?

by John Carver

On creating a new association
by Caroline Oliver
Caroline Oliver, who writes regularly for Board Leadership, has recently been involved in the startup of a new association, the International Policy Governance Association, which she now chairs. Here she offers a case history, sharing some of the governance challenges and lessons learned in building an organization and its governing structure from the ground up. If you have ideas or views that you would like to pass on to the association, e-mail Caroline Oliver at coliver@cgo.wave.ca.

How can the board ensure that CEO data are accurate?
by John Carver
The following exchange took place on John Carver's www.carvergovernance.com Web site forum. Carver's responses have been expanded to provide greater usefulness to Board Leadership readers.


Number 57, September/October 2001
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


How executive limitations policies can go awry
by John Carver

He who pays the piper calls the tune?
by Caroline Oliver
Funding may be vital to the operations of any organization, but that does not mean that the funders should determine an organization's ends. As Caroline Oliver, general editor of the Policy Governance Fieldbook and current chair of the International Policy Governance Association, points out here, the board is beholden to the ownership before any other stakeholders, funders included. That is why the only group that legitimately “calls the tune” is the ownership. Caroline Oliver can be contacted at 905-337-9412.

When the CEO and board are both elected
by John Carver
The following exchange took place recently on John Carver's Policy Governance Forum at www.carvergovernance.com. Even though many readers may not be operating in circumstances where the CEO and board are both elected, John and Miriam Carver's responses, which have been expanded for Board Leadership readers, shed light on a fundamental principle of Policy Governance that relates to all organizations: what it means for the CEO to be accountable to the board.

Number 58, November/December 2001
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What use is business experience on a nonprofit or governmental board?
by John Carver
Most boards assume that business experience can be a great asset in board members. And it can be-but as John Carver explains, not in the ways many managers may assume.

Uncovering the value of the right word
by Caroline Oliver
Most people join boards for selfless reasons, because they want to “make a difference.” Received wisdom tells us that making a difference is grueling and overwhelming work, and unfortunately the muddled governance procedures of most boards seem to prove the case. In this article, Caroline Oliver, chair of the International Policy Governance Association, shows us why the Policy Governance board must disabuse itself of the orthodoxy that says that there is a one-to-one relationship between effort and effectiveness. Relying on just a handful of concise policies, the Policy Governance board dictates a whole range of organizational ends and so has more time to govern than the board that busies itself with staff means. The Policy Governance board may have a more straightforward job than the traditional board, but it is also more effective.

How can staff know that board advice is not actually veiled instruction?
by John Carver

Number 59, January/ February 2002
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Democracy unleashed
by Caroline Oliver

Surviving the transition: Reigniting the passion
by John Carver
When new members join a Policy Governance board, it is imperative that they be thoroughly oriented to the theory and practice of the model. Well-planned orientation not only ensures that new members will be stewards of good governance but also helps veteran members revitalize their own commitment to the model. In this article, Randee Loucks breaks down, orientation into a logical five-step process.

What should government flinders require of nonprofit governance?
by John Carver

Number 60, March/April 2002
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Policy governance as a value investment: Succession planning
by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance requires a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the first of several articles that will examine behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. How can they be sure to make a “value investment” that will stand the test of time, rather than a “day trade” with possible short-term gain but not necessarily substantive gain in the long run? Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In this article, she considers the importance of succession planning. Future articles will consider the role of good information and planning in making Policy Governance a value investment.

Isn't the hierarchical nature of policy governance out of step with modern participative organizational styles?
by John Carver

Means, ends, and ideals
by John Carver
In this article, John Carver considers the ends policies of a women's center. He finds an unusually well conceived ends statement but also uncovers a common error in the crafting of mega-ends policies. Like so many other organizations, this one appears to have committed itself to an end so ambitious as to be practically unattainable. The article shows that it is important to distinguish between a vision of a better world that motivates a board and a result that a board can realistically commit its organization to accomplish in the world.

Number 61, May/June 2002
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Value investing: A governance action plan
by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance involves a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the second of several articles that will examine behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. How can they be sure to make a “value investment” that will stand the test of time, rather than a “day trade” with possible short-term gain but not necessarily substantive gain in the long run? Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In Issue 60 of Board Leadership, she discussed succession planning, orientation for prospective and new board members, length of tenure, and the need to be committed to the principles of the model, even when the going gets rough. In this article, she introduces the idea of a Governance Action Plan (GAP). A GAP is not the establishment of ends policies but rather a tool that boards can use to set realistic objectives for themselves and to monitor their own progress in their implementation of Policy Governance.

The cult of efficiency
by Caroline Oliver
In 1964, a professor named Raymond Callahan published a book titled Education and the Cult of Efficiency, and since then the concept has worked its way into general organizational parlance. In Policy Governance terms, the “cult of efficiency” describes a dangerous preoccupation with means without first identifying ends. How can we know if we're efficient if we don't first understand what it is we're trying to accomplish? The cult of efficiency is the subject of a recent lecture by a conflict management professor named Janice Gross Stein, later published in book form. In this article, Caroline Oliver considers the ways in which Stein's ideas about the cult of efficiency coincide with, and differ from, the Policy Governance concepts of ends and means.

Why should the board use negative wording about the staffs means?
by John Carver

Number 62, July/August 2002
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Policy governance: The story so far
by Caroline Oliver
Sometimes it takes a crisis to provoke change. The Enron debacle is just such a crisis, and with the first book on Policy Governance in the corporate sector hitting the shelves this summer, this could be a pivotal moment in the history of the development of Policy Governance. Caroline Oliver marks this occasion by laying down the story so far. Perhaps understanding how far Policy Governance has come will lay the groundwork for the future; this article will at least provide a record of the state of Policy Governance in the summer of 2002.

A governance information system

by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance requires a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the final article in a three-part series examining behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In Issue 61 of Board Leadership, she discussed the idea of a Governance Action Plan. In this article, she addresses the idea of a Governance Information System in contributing to Policy Governance as a value investment.

Is there a fundamental difference between governance and management?

by John Carver

Number 63, September/October 2002
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Questions and answers about good governance
by Caroline Oliver
The Nonprofit Board Answer Book is a well-established text in the governance field. In This article, Caroline Oliver, governance consultant and author, reviews the new edition of the Answer Book from a Policy Governance perspective.

Filling board vacancies
by John Carver

Boards of boards!
by John Carver

Uncommon titles…
by John Carver

Does policy governance prohibit staff from talking with board members?
by John Carver

Number 64, November/December 2002
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What are the other models?
by Susan Mogensen
The discussion forums on PolicyGovernance.com host many illuminating conversations about governance, and occasionally, Board Leadership publishes a particularly articulate and timely post, with grateful acknowledgment of the author. The following is one such post: A pointed question about the alternatives to Policy Governance.

Policy governance and other governance models compared
by Caroline Oliver
Many observers would say that Policy Governance is the first “governance model,” but boards are presented with a range of other options. In this article, Caroline Oliver gives an overview of those other options. What are they? How do they function? Are they really models, or are they merely descriptions of some common board arrangements? What are their relative advantages and disadvantages? And most important, are they likely to foster good governance?

How can an organization's statements of vision, beliefs, values, and philosophy be integrated into policy governance policy?
by John Carver


Number 65, January/ February 2003
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"Messy democracies": Should they be protected or cleaned up?
by Bill Charney

In the minority
by Caroline Oliver

What if board members "just want to know" about some aspect of operations?
by John Carver

Number 66, March/April 2003
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Can policy governance® enhance the complex job of state commissions and boards?
by Larry Hermen
The practice of Policy Governance by a state-appointed commission or board is often complicated by the circumstances that spurred its creation and the realities that guide its operation. This is especially true when state legislatures create commissions and boards that have their members appointed by the governor. How can a state commission or board so conceived enjoy many of the benefits found by nonprofit boards practicing Policy Governance? How can such a commission or board navigate the often built- in challenges to the main principles of Policy Governance, especially as it relates to the role of its executive? Governance consultant Larry Hermen, a graduate of the Policy Governance Academy, briefly describes the accomplishments thus far by such a board in Michigan.

Dealing with the board's first-order and second-order worries: Borrowing trouble effectively
by John Carver
Planning is critical, but it is important that a board distinguish between planning to achieve ends and avoid unacceptable means and actually achieving ends and avoiding unacceptable means. Achievement is the primary concern of a Policy Governance board. However, if a board has credible concerns that management may not complete sufficient planning, it can be useful to create carefully crafted executive limitations policies on planning.

The trap of answering your CEO's request for more guidance
by John Carver

Theory aversion
by Caroline Oliver

Number 67, May/June 2003
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Why size matters
by Caroline Oliver
There are a number of reasons why a board may be large, among them the desire to have diverse representation. But whatever the reasons, there comes a point at which a board becomes too cumbersome to effectively represent its ownership. It is difficult to have meaningful debate in large groups - progress is slow, factions may form, and resources are wasted. In this article, Caroline Oliver lays out some critical questions that boards should consider in order to determine if their membership is too big; she then offers some preliminary suggestions about how a board may get its membership to optimum size and maximum effectiveness.

A new basis for governance effectiveness research
by John Carver
Most governance research to date has consisted of descriptions of various types of governance arrangements. Absent from the literature is an underlying organizing principle, a conception of the fundamental purpose of governance. Without this underlying principle, attempts to assess effectiveness will fail. In this article, John Carver proposes a succinct definition of the purpose of governance and draws out some necessary consequences of this definition. This conception of the purpose of governance can serve as an underlying principle to guide research on the effectiveness of governance.

What do the new federal governance requirements for corporate audit committees mean for the policy governance board?
by John Carver

Number 68, July/August 2003
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Developing group discipline
by Caroline Oliver

Committee mania among city councils
by John Carver

Board access to the internal auditor
by John Carver
More and more organizations are beginning to create a position for an ethics officer or internal auditor. Such a position can be a great asset to an organization, but it is fraught with ambiguity. To whom does this auditor report? Is it a staff position under CEO authority? Or is it a staff position intended to report to the board? If the latter, how can the integrity of the CEO's position be maintained? In this brief article, John Carver clarifies how such a position can function effectively in a Policy Governance board.

Why in policy governance are customary management words like goal, objective procedure, and strategy discouraged?
by John Carver

Number 69, September/October 2003
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The view from Hong Kong
by Caroline Oliver
Most readers of Board Leadership are engaged with governance in the nonprofit and public sectors. In this article, Caroline Oliver takes a look at a recent report from Hong Kong that gives an overview of what is happening in the corporate sector there and asks what lessens, if any, can be learned for governance generally.

Governance rehearsal: A new tool
by Miriam Carver

Doesn't policy governance require too much confidence in the CEO?
by John Carver

Number 70, November/December 2003
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When owners don't agree
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance boards know that the source of their authority is their owners, and sometimes that means that their problems have just begun. It is all very well knowing clearly who your owners are, but it can get pretty tricky if they turn out to have conflicting views about what the organization should be about or where it should go. A surprising number of boards are in this position, and how they handle this problem can be a hallmark of their leadership.

The big picture: Policy governance and democracy
by Susan Mogensen

What is the role of an advocacy group in effective governance?
by John Carver

Number 71, January/ February 2004
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Ten strategies to help ensure the sustainability of policy governance in the public school environment
by Linda J. Dawson and Randy Quinn
A board's decision to adopt and faithfully implement Policy Governance is the first level of commitment. To ensure that the current board's commitment is sustainable as a legacy of leadership and good governance is quite another challenge. This is a particularly acute challenge for public boards.

Carver policy governance in Canada: A lawyer's defense
by Hugh M. Kelly

Can you really separate ends from means? Shouldn't the board and staff work as partners?
by John Carver

If corporate governance is a fad, we need more fads
by John Carver

Number 72, March/April 2004
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Governing excellence: Living in a new paradigm from theory to reality
by Linda Stier
John Carver refers to Policy Governance as a new paradigm for governance and governing boards. He has called it “a paradigm tailored to the special circumstances of governance” that enables us “to apply wisdom more coherently.” That's a bold statement but one that can be easily understood. A paradigm is something serving as an example or model of how things should be done. Thus Policy Governance serves as a model of how governance should be conceived. Yet living or operating in a new paradigm requires shifting from the paradigm we are currently in to operating in a new paradigm. It's the shifting of a paradigm that's difficult to comprehend, let alone realize.

On scurvy, elephants, and governance vitamins
by Jannice Moore

"Shouldn't this information be confidential between me and my staff?"
by John Carver

Number 73, May/June 2004
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How to tell board means from staff means
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
The distinction between ends and means will be familiar to readers of Board Leadership. The board determines the broadest organizational ends, leaving to the staff farther ends as well as all organizational means that fall within board-stated limits. Yet the board itself has operational concerns, such as scheduling meetings and setting agendas; that is to say, the board has its own means. Though this situation seems uncomplicated, in fact it generates considerable confusion and opportunity for the blurring of roles. In this article, John and Miriam Carver clarify what means belong to the staff and what means belong to the board.

Miriam Carver becomes executive coeditor
by John Carver

Won't a larger board mean there is greater diversity in governance?
by John Carver

You claim that policy governance is a universal model for governance. Why is a universal model even needed?
by John Carver

It worries me that in the policy governance system, the board gives a huge amount of authority to the CEO. What makes this OK?
by Miriam Carver

Number 74, July/August 2004
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Strange Ends
by Caroline Oliver
The concept of ends can appear to have some paradoxical characteristics. Using her experience in ends policy development, Caroline Oliver explores these apparent paradoxes and helps us understand why they occur and how to deal with them.

When a policy governance board hires a new CEO, what are some important dos and don'ts to remember during the hiring process and the new CEO's early weeks?
by Miriam Carver

Sticking to the process without getting stuck
by Susan Mogensen

Number 75, September/October 2004
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The mighty meeting
by Caroline Oliver
In this article, Caroline Oliver considers, in depth, the subject of Policy Governance and board meetings. She shows how Policy Governance principles of ownership, accountability, board holism, delegation, and crafting of effective policy can serve as the groundwork for successful meetings. From this starting point, with a little critical attention, board members can take control of their meetings, making them not only more productive and efficient but even enlightening and fun.

In policy governance, the board is supposed to speak with one voice to the CEO. Yet our board relies to some extent on CEO advice when we make our decisions. Is this OK?
by Miriam Carver

Number 76, November/December 2004
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The power and the glory: Embracing the joy of accountability
by Susan Mogensen

Using information technology to sustain policy governance
by Ray Tooley
Can Policy Governance provide a long-term sustainable model for owner-accountable effective governance? The answer is a resounding yes, but there are many challenges boards face in becoming mature and seasoned users of this comprehensive system. This article will examine some of the obstacles to achieving user-friendly Policy Governance sustainability and how information technology can be used to overcome the barriers on the road to success.

Why shouldn't a board set ends policies one program at a time?
by John Carver

Number 77, January/ February 2005
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A debatable alliance
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note governance codes
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Policy governance top ten
by Susan Rogers

Now let's really reform governance
by John Carver
Corporate governance reform has become a growth industry around the world. In most countries, new expectations about transparency, conflicts of interest, and composition have taken the voluntary form of “conform or explain.” In the United States, reforms came in the more authoritative form of legislation the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX), sponsored by Senator Paul S. Sarbanes and Congressman Michael G. Oxley. The law was passed in response to various recent corporate debacles. It is not the first such reform, nor will it be the last, although due to its legal force it is the most conspicuous in recent history. Although SOX applies to listed companies, many boards of nonprofit organizations and units of local government mistakenly thinking SOX is the last word in good governance have tried to apply its provisions to their own situations voluntarily. In fact, SOX does improve many widespread corporate practices, but it is not a complete gover nance system and in fact does nothing to address the nature of corporate governance itself. In other words, SOX, along with less legalistic reforms around the world, provides some useful patches for the primitive state of corporate governance but leaves it only in a newly patched condition. The following article originally appeared in Directors Monthly.

Number 78, March/April 2005
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The legal and fiduciary duties of directors
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

On a Personal Note policy governance and the law
by John Carver

Legal concerns with policy governance
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

The contrast between accountability and liability
by John Carver

Number 79, May/June 2005
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Sarbanes-Oxley: Reconciling legal compliance with good governance
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

On a Personal Note our second legal issue
by John Carver

When legal counsel is uninformed
by Bill Charney and Jim Hyatt
Boards often look to attorneys to guide their decisions about governance practice. For example, legal counsel is normally asked for help in revising bylaws, as they usually need to be revised with the adoption of Policy Governance. Legal knowledge, however, is not the same as governance knowledge. Bill Charney and Jim Hyatt's article “Legal Concerns with Policy Governance” (in Issue 78 of Board Leadership) addressed issues periodically seen as problematic by attorneys seeking to minimize legal risks for their clients. In this article, Charney and Hyatt explore misunderstandings that arise when an attorney lacks an understanding of Policy Governance and provide suggestions for effective board responses.

Independent? From whom?
by Miriam Carver

Number 80, July/August 2005
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The inspired board
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note the problem with familiar rituals
by Miriam Carver

Board accountability in highly constrained environments
by Caroline Oliver
The Policy Governance system, like any effective system, is based on a series of “first principles. This article discusses the principle of accountability and its meaning for boards with very limited apparent authority.

How can a board use a consent agenda both to satisfy external requirements that the board be involved in operational means and to meet its duty of care?
by Bill Chamey and Jim Hyatt

What if our attorney advises that we change limitations policies to prohibit the CEO from "knowingly" allowing unlawful, unethical, or imprudent activities?
by Bill Chamey and Jim Hyatt

Our board is self-perpetuating. What is the Policy Governance principle with respect to how long board terms should be?
by Miriam Carver

Number 81, September/October 2005
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The meaning of constituency
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note how do we assess a charity's worthiness?
by Miriam Carver

Ends that make a difference: Boldly creating the future
by John Carver
John Carver urges boards to leap beyond the simple matter of whether this or that is really an ends issue and move on to the real challenge: to set ever higher ends expectations. Boards spend far too much time fussing with the ends concept rather than using it. One of Carver's reasons for constructing the Policy Governance model was to enable boards powerfully and unrelentingly to impel managerial performance. The preliminary requirement for that is to focus on the right things free of the clutter which the ends-means concept enables. But for boards to demand doable but increasingly extraordinary performance requires that they add the human elements of farsightedness, daring, and leadership. The following is an adaptation of Carver's keynote address to the annual con-ference of the International Policy Governance Association in Phoenix, June 3, 2005.

Why all the fuss about the peculiar Policy Governance ends concept?
by John Carver

Number 82, November/December 2005
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Why the unique approach to measurement and monitoring under policy governance®?
by Richard M. Biery

On a Personal Note policy governance conferences, academies, and seminars
by John Carver

Policy governance and "best practices"
by John Carver
A popular phrase that has grown in use over the past couple of decades is “best practices.” In this article, John Carver explains why proponents of Policy Governance tend to shy away from the expression. Carver does not object to the notion that it is desirable to make small-scale improvements in individual practices, but he points out that such activity is in itself insufficient to truly improve governance since it implies a reliance on already established conceptual frameworks. Policy Governance calls for a break with received wisdom and the adoption of a more logical governance framework. Once within the structure of Policy Governance, however, boards should indeed look for ways to improve their practices.

News reports through policy governance eyes
by John Carver
Thousands of persons who have learned Policy Governance are amused or dismayed by news stories that cover the actions of boards in all their varieties, whether they are called boards, councils, or commissions and whether they operate in the political, business, or nonprofit arena. In this article, John Carver reflects on a number of such news stories, though he has altered the locations, names, and other identifying data as an act of charity.

Why does the word monitoring have such a strictive definition in policy Governance literature?
by John Carver
Long Before policy Governance, boards were monitoring staff performance, so receiving reports and taking them seriously is nothing new. So I am confused by the overly restrictive use of the word monitoring in Policy Governance literature. Why must it be so rigidly defined?

Number 83, January/ February 2006
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What Can You Trust?
by Caroline Oliver

How Much Policy Governance Is Required for It to Be Policy Governance?
by John Carver
Board Leadership is pleased to reproduce here a very slightly modified excerpt from the brand-new third edition of John Carver's Boards That Make a Difference: A New Design for Leadership in Nonprofit and Public Organizations (Jossey-Bass, 2006). The excerpt from Chapter 12, titled “But Does It Work?” appears between a response to various model criticisms and a discussion of research on governance effectiveness.

Why not delegate the evaluation of the executive director (our CEO) to the Human Resource Committee?
by John Carver

Number 84, March/April 2006
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Executive Limitations Policies: Two Errors to Avoid
by John Carver

Governance as Leadership?
by Caroline Oliver
Caroline Oliver reviews Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work on Nonprofit Boards, by Richard P. Chait, William P. Ryan, and Barbara E. Taylor (Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2005).

What authority does a board committee have over the staff member assigned for its support?
by John Carver

Should senior staff be present at board meetings?
by John Carver

Number 85, May/June 2006
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The Red Herring of Board Involvement
by John Carver
Governance effectiveness research cannot proceed until it is clear what governance effectiveness is.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

Enriching the Dimensions of Board Decision Making
by Jannice Moore
Is your board getting maximum value from Policy Governance or just going though the motions?

Boardroom Sins to Avoid
by John Carver

Why Nonprofit Boards Should Not Learn Accountability from Corporate Boards
by John Carver
The difference between corporate management and corporate governance.

Number 86, July/August 2006
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Prescribing Favored Means by Proscribing all Others
by John Carver
Means prescriptions in sheep's clothing.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

International Aid Agencies and the UN's Millennium Development Goals
by Caroline Oliver
There is perhaps no more vital sphere in which to examine what Policy Governance has to offer than in tackling the needs of the world's poorest people. Taking her courage in both hands, Caroline Oliver sets out on an exploration in which she hopes others will engage.

The United National Millennium Development Goals
by John Carver

Number 87, September/ October 2006
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How Good People Can Inadvertently Abuse the Board's Trusteeship
by John Carver
Noble intentions do not necessarily translate into good governance.

On A Personal Note
by John and Miriam Carver

Who's the "Authoritative Source" on Policy Governance?
by John Carver
A theory can survive only by the force of its own logic.

FAQ
by John Carver

Seven Things a Board Chair Should Never Do
by John Carver
This article addresses what board chairs should not do. It was inspired by an inquiry received several years ago by a new chair who wanted to be very sure what to avoid. Although pronouncements had always been focused on the Policy Governance prescriptions for what a board chair should do, it seemed a reasonable question deserving an answer.

Number 88, November/ December 2006
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Sharpening the Global Ends Policy
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
Over the course of the thirty years since the creation of the Policy Governance model, two kinds of evolution have occurred. First, the theory was made increasingly coherent; most changes of this fundamental sort happened during the first few years. Second, practices within the model - its concrete, procedural use - have been continually adjusted toward greater fidelity to the theory. Changes of this sort continue to happen even now. They include greater care in policy format, much more transparency in monitoring reports, and - as John and Miriam Carver point out in this article - better representation of efficiency in construction of the global ends policy.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Importance of Operational Definitions
by John Carver
The evolution of performance monitoring in Policy Governance has increasingly brought practice into closer alignment with the theory. The theoretical elements are (1) that a delegatee (for management, normally a CEO, which is assumed for the sake of this article) has the right to use any reasonable interpretation of the board's language, (2) that the board is obligated to assess the degree to which performance fulfills the delegation, and (3) that the assessment comprises the delegatee's evaluation. But theoretical elements do not automatically translate into procedures. In this article, John Carver explains how the concept of "operational definitions" can help build the bridge between theory and practice.

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
by John Carver
Thousands of persons who have learned Policy Governance are amused - or dismayed - by news stories that cover the actions of boards in all their varieties, whether they are called boards, councils, or commissions, and whether they operate in the political, business, or nonprofit arena. In this article - the second in this intermittent series - John Carver reflects on a number of such news stories, though he may alter the locations, names, and other details to preserve anonymity.

Number 89, January/ February 2007
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Using Policy Governance® to Manage Risk Effectively
by Jannice Moore
A system for balancing management empowerment with the need to retain control.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

Beyond Board Self-Evaluation
by John Carver
It is generally accepted that board self-evaluation is is a good thing. Boards that regularly evaluate themselves are sen not only as more conscientious but also as more effective, even in the absence of other signs of effectiveness. In this article, John Carver's intent is not to derogate boards' frequently taking stock of their own performance but rather to shape the conversation about self-inspection.

Number 90, March/April 2007
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Now Draw This!
by Miriam Carver
Abstract: Policy Governance is a model based on a set of principles that must be well understood to be used profitably. This is why we spend a good amount of time exploring those principles with our clients before attempting to help them apply the model. We have found that a lot of time can be wasted in the policy development and implementation phases of a board's work when basic principles are not well understood. This is hardly a surprising discovery; it is difficult to implement principles one does not understand.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

The Board and the Internal Auditor
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
Not all organizations have internal auditors. Those that do can be beset by an uneasy and ambiguous interaction among the internal auditor, the CEO, and the board. This article does not debate the advisability of having an internal auditor by rather discusses the type of link that a board might establish with the internal auditor while preserving the integrity of the CEO role.

FAQ
by John Carver

Lessons from Hewlett-Packard
by Jim Hyatt
Sir Adrian Cadbury has said, "Chairs have a major leadership task. It is they who are responsible for turning a collection of competent individuals into an effective team." As Jim Hyatt points out in this article, the chair's leadership task is exactly that, but only when considered within the context of the board as initial authority.

Number 91, May/June 2007
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Defining Purpose: Outputs, Not Activities
by Miriam Carver
For anyone familiar with the Policy Governance model, it is not news that the model requires boards to focus keenly on organizational results, as well as their recipients and worth (ends), rather than on organizational activities and processes (means). One of the major contributions made by Policy governance is the clarity of the ends concept and the unblinking assertion that organizations exist for their ends, not their means. The organization's purpose, then, lies not in its activities, however remarkable they may be, but in its ends, for to define purpose as anything less than the accomplishment of results is to cheapen the concept of purpose.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Ups and Downs of Hierarchy
by Susan Mogensen
Morally, hierarchy is neither good not bad.

Policy Governance as an Enabler of Wisdom
by Jannice Moore
A system that helps boards replace "busy work" with the creation of unique value.

Number 92, July/August 2007
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Ethics and Prudence Standards vs. Management Consulting
by John Carver
Certain normal board behaviors, while seemingly innocuous, are actually quite damaging to effective governance. One of these well-intended behaviors is acting as a management consultant to staff. Though it seems counterintuitive, "helpful" assistance or direction from the board interferes with both expansive empowerment and robust accountability.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Emergence of Policy Governance
by Caroline Oliver
It is now seventeen years since Boards That Make a Difference was first published, exposing the principles and practice of Policy Governance to the nonprofit and public worlds. Since that time, Policy Governance has established a solid footing on a number of boards, but nothing like the number that might be expected, given the lack of real alternatives.

Revisiting Values in Policy Governance
by John Carver
In recent years, it has become popular for boards to adopt a formal list of their values, along with statements of mission and vision. Although the intent behind these actions is admirable, the impulse indicates an unsophisticated style of governance, a style in which board documents reflect old governance technology rather than new.

Number 93, September/ October 2007
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Accountability isn't Blame; It's a System Characteristic
by John Carver
The concept of accountability is as central to the Policy Governance model as it is to good management systems. The increased attention given to accountability in the popular press is very appropriate, but ironically, its buzzword status may have resulted in a distraction from its most important role in organization.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

FAQ
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Policy Governance Sample Policies
by John Carver
Don't mistake the application for the theory.

Number 94, November/ December 2007
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Boardroom Conversation: Total or Incremental Policy Governance Language
by John Carver
Nanci Erkert, a Policy Governance Academy-trained consultant, recently shared an insightful analogy with John and Miriam Carver. It concerned the issue many boards confront when they are new to Policy Governance: Shall we discipline our conversation with Policy Governance concepts and principles even though it is difficult and, due to unfamiliarity, awkward and slow? Or shall we use whatever language comes naturally and let our usage grow more comfortably Policy Governance in nature over time? As Erkert observed, the processes by which people acquire a foreign language provide a useful way to approach this question.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

FAQ
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Say What?
by John Carver
Cautionary examples in governance thinking.

FAQ
by John Carver

When the Board Asks a Committee to Develop Its Initial Policies
by John Carver
Creating a new Policy Governance board's initial policies is not a mere drafting errand.

Number 95, January/ February 2008
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Does Policy Governance Expect too Much?
by John Carver
A participant in the fall 2007 Policy Governance Academy clearly phrased a criticism of Policy Governance that John and Miriam had frequently heard, though not always so pointedly put. Quite apart from demonstrating conceptual elegance or logic of design, the man said, is it possible that Policy Governance requires such persistent discipline and consistent actions that it requires human board members to be, in effect, superhuman?

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

Connecting Theories of What Matters
by Brian L. Carpenter
80/20, the vital few, least effort, and Policy Governance

Governing a Faith-Based Organization: Addressing Unique Challenges in the Board Room
by Robert Jordan
Some faith-based organizations (FBOs) are small in terms of their budgets and operations, while others represent large corporate structures and complex financial strategies. And like many nonprofits, FBOs compete for funding sources. This, of course, creates the need for ethical stewardship of monies received. But in addition, FBOs today face some unique challenges that other nonprofits may not. It is these challenges that many FBO governing boards face in their attempts to adequately address problems of the day in the context of responding based on faith or religion. Although Policy Governance was not created for FBOs or any other specific type of organization, it does provide a rational framework that allows FBOs to address their specific issues.


Number 96, March/April 2008
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Demonstrating CEO Performance in Small Organizations
by Miriam Carver
It has always been a principle of Policy Governance that the CEO has the authority to make and carry out any reasonable interpretation of board policies with respect to ends and executive limitations. It has also been a principle that the board is obligated to ascertain that organizational performance is in fact consistent with a reasonable interpretation of those policies. In recent years, as an advanced practice in the service of those principles, John and Miriam Carver have been teaching that the interpretations made by the CEO should be explicit and justified in a way that enables the board to make an informed judgment in fulfillment of that obligation.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Keys to Critiquing Policy Governance
by Susan Mogensen
A practical guide for poking holes in the theory.

Boards and the Bottom Line
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance ensures that boards are relevant.

FAQ
by John Carver


Number 96, March/April 2008
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Demonstrating CEO Performance in Small Organizations
by Miriam Carver
It has always been a principle of Policy Governance that the CEO has the authority to make and carry out any reasonable interpretation of board policies with respect to ends and executive limitations. It has also been a principle that the board is obligated to ascertain that organizational performance is in fact consistent with a reasonable interpretation of those policies. In recent years, as an advanced practice in the service of those principles, John and Miriam Carver have been teaching that the interpretations made by the CEO should be explicit and justified in a way that enables the board to make an informed judgment in fulfillment of that obligation.

On a Personal Note: The Real World of Governance Theory
by John Carver

The Keys to Critiquing Policy Governance
by Susan Mogensen
A practical guide for poking holes in the theory.

Boards and the Bottom Line
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance ensures that boards are relevant.

FAQ: Why can’t our board use a standard form for evaluation?
by John Carver


Number 97, May/June 2008
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Board Accountability for Organizational Success
by John Carver
Even the best monitoring is not a board job output.

On a Personal Note: Some Thoughts on Policy Governance Writings
by John Carver

Not-So-Musical Chairs
by John Carver
The pesky persistence of chairperson role confusion.

Tilting at Windmills
by John Carver
Where’s the informed criticism of Policy Governance?


Number 98, July/August 2008
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Hierarchy: Necessary but Not Necessarily Evil
by Susan Mogensen
With the laudable goal of minimizing the conflicts and irresponsible use of power that often flow from hierarchical structures, it is possible to have a “nonhierarchical governance structure” that remains effective and accountable and not simply ineffective for the sake of being “nonhierarchical”? This question was addressed in Part One of this series (Issue 96 of Board Leadership), and it was determined that hierarchy is integral to any conversation about governance. Having concluded that it is impossible to completely avoid hierarchy, this second and final installment considers in more detail how common problems attributed to hierarchy are resolved by Policy Governance.

On a Personal Note: On Public Service Announcements and the Means Trap
by John Carver

Overcoming a Challenge in Using a New Technology
by Eric Craymer and Susan Stratton
Was this a dream—the nightmare kind? A Policy Governance board was in the middle of a meeting when a question that surely sounded like operational means came from a newer board member: “What programs should the CEO develop?” It might have been inexperience that caused the inquiry, but no one raised an objection. What had gone wrong? The members of this board had been doing everything right. They chose Policy Governance after a full consideration of available options. They participated in the introductory course of training and developed a model-consistent policy manual in the blitz session. They sought out additional support for their first year of implementation. Every year, they conduct orientation for new board members and hold a policy development session that includes synthesizing what they have learned over the year from their education and ownership linkage. Practically every year, they make an adjustment to their ends policies based on what they have learned. How could they be making sych an elemental mistake regarding boundaries. The question drives Eric Craymer and Susan Stratton to seek a better understanding.


Number 99, September/October 2008
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Sacrificing Good Intentions to Antiquated Technology
By John Carver
The road to tomorrow’s corporate governance can’t be paved with yesterday’s concepts.

On a Personal Note: New Developments in Policy Governance
By John and Miriam Carver

What Makes a Good Board Great?
By Jannice Moore
How disciplined people can take disciplined action.

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver
John Carver examines current events.

FAQ: I know we’re supposed to speak with one voice as a board, but how do we prevent board members from saying they didn’t vote for a decision the board ended up making?
By Miriam Carver


Number 100, November/December 2008
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Salute to the Board Leadership Centenary
by Sir Adrian Cadbury
If there is one person responsible for the worldwide attention to corporate governance and the international flurry of corporate governance codes near the end of the twentieth century, it is Sir Adrian Cadbury. Sir Adrian chaired the Committee on Financial Aspects of Corporate Governance that produced in 1990 the groundbreaking “Cadbury Report” on the governance of U.K. companies. Over the ensuing years, such codes grew like wildfire in country after country, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 in the United States. Sir Adrian has written The Company Chairman, Corporate Governance and Chairmanship and numerous articles. He has been a director of the Bank of England, chairman of Cadbury-Schweppes, chancellor of Aston University, and an honorary fellow of King’s College, Cambridge.

On a Personal Note: The Big Issue!
By Miriam Carver

Board Leadership: A Biography
By John Carver
Over sixteen years of governance insight.

This Just In: World Initiative for Human Progress
By Caroline Oliver
Looking toward the future of Policy Governance.

The Birth of Policy Governance
By John Carver
From Harris County, Texas, to the world stage.


Number 101, January/February 2009
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A U.K. Policy Governance Odyssey
by Stuart Emslie

On a Personal Note: Worldwide Policy Governance
By Miriam Carver

A Universal Model
By Jan Maas

Policy Governance in New Zealand
By Sandy Brinsdon

How to Eat an Elephant: Linking with Owners
By Jannice Moore


Number 102, March/April 2009
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A Childless Citizen's Appeal to the Board of Education
by John Carver

On a Personal Note: The New Carver Policy Governance Guides
By Miriam Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver

Meeting Audit Standards with Thorough Policy Governance Implementation
By R.M. Biery and Gregg Capin

FAQ: Why do boards and city councils ignore the task forces they've appointed to provide input?
By John Carver


Number 103, May/June 2009
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Executive Compensation: Cherchez la Board
by John Carver

On a Personal Note: Repair the Infrastructure? What an Idea!
By Miriam Carver

Danger: Health Care Targets at Work
By Caroline Oliver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver

FAQ: Q: What's wrong with the board chair, between meetings, speaking for the board if the CEO requires reassurance that he or she is meeting the terms of board policies?
By John Carver


Number 104, July/August 2009
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Is Student Achievement the Test of School Board Governance?
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: CEO-centrism Marches On
By John Carver

What's Different About Policy Governance Policies
By John Carver

FAQ: Why is it wrong to say that the board makes ends decisions and the staff means decisions?
By John Carver

FAQ: In Policy Governance writings and presentations, it is frequently said that the CEO should not be a voting board member. So why isn't that included as a Policy Governance principle?
By John Carver

The Familiar Scene of a Board Asking for Public Input - About the Wrong Things
By Miriam Carver


Number 105, Sept/Oct 2009
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My Last ExxonMobil Annual Meeting
By Robert. A. G. Monks

On a Personal Note: Corporate Governance and Resistance to Theory
By John Carver

How Business Week Got It Wrong
By John Carver

FAQ: Does Policy Governance allow a board to refuse to answer questions posed in a public meeting?
By Miriam Carver

If God Is in the Details, Shouldn't the Board Be There Too?
By John Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver


Number 106, Nov/Dec 2009
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Ends Policies: A Review of Theory and Practice
By Miriam Carver

On a Personal Note: The "Ends Issue"
By John Carver

Untangling Strategic Planning and Ends: Challenging Conventional Wisdom
By Jannice Moore

Differentiating Ends from Outputs or Results
By John Carver


Number 107, Jan/Feb 2010
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Critique of an Ostensible Ends Policy
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: On the Need for Model Integrity
By John Carver

Crisis Governance
By Caroline Oliver

FAQ: Should Monitoring Reports Be Made Available to Owners?
By Miriam Carver

If I Read One More Article on Board Governance
By Richard M. Biery


Number 108, Mar/April 2010
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Board Control Over Earnings Management
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: How Does a Board Decide Which Matters It Should Decide?
By John Carver

Board Recruitment: By Design or by Default?
By Jannice Moore

Taking a Whole System Approach to Adopting Policy Governance
By Susan Radwan


Number 109, May/June 2010
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The Concept of Worth
By Jim Hyatt

On a Personal Note: Keeping Board Leadership Free of Politics and Faith
By John Carver

Clarity
By Caroline Oliver

FAQ: Is it legitimate for our board to influence the CEO's choice of executives?
By John Carver

FAQ: What should we do when a question about incidental information is raised during review of a monitoring report?
By John Carver

BOARD LEADERSHIP ARTICLE INDEX

Number 1, May/June 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


First Things First – An imaginative exercise for revitalizing your mission
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Girl Scout Council Learns What Kind of Help Counts the Most
by John Carver

Just How Long Should Board Meetings Be?
by John Carver

Any Questions?
by John Carver

Norman Barth, Executive Director of Lutheran World Relief - Clear policy statements can free you to act creatively
by Norman Barth
Lutheran World Relief (LWR) is an international development agency based in New York. It began with relief efforts following World War II. Today it distributes many millions of dollars in nonsectarian aid and expertise in Asia, Latin America, and Africa. For several years, the board of directors of LWR has committed its wisdom and wishes to clearly written policy statements. Of those policies that instruct the chief executive, some capture the board's vision (Ends); some clarify the boundary of acceptability for staff action (Executive Limitations). Here, Dr. Norman Barth, executive director of LWR, spells out the effect of implementing this principle in his organization.


Number 2, July/August 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Creating a Single Voice: The Prerequisite to Board Leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Of Homeless Cats and Governance: Distinguishing Customers from Owners
by John Carver

Controlling the Cost of Staffing Board Committees
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Howard Moreaux and Leslie Tremaine
by Howard Moreaux and Leslie Tremaine
Jefferson Parish Human Services Authority (JPHS) was formed as a legislative demonstration project in 1990 to govern mental health, mental retardation, and substance abuse services for an area adjacent to New Orleans. Its 12-person board is appointed by the parish council and the governor's office. The board is primarily a grass-roots group, composed of people with strong personal interests in service issues rather than extensive policy or governing board experience. As a relatively new organization, JPHS'S board was able to attempt the new governance approach before conventional precedents were strongly established. The board has used the long-range focus of Policy Governance to balance the day-to-day crisis management demands of establishing itself in the often high charged and reactive environment of Louisiana politics. Mr. Moreaux and Dr. Tremaine are board chair and executive director, respectively.


Number 3, September/October 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Painful Lessons: Learning from the United Way Misfortune
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

The Importance of Trust in the Board-CEO Relationship
by John Carver

A Few Tips for the Chairperson
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

John Guy, First Vice-President of Investments, Dean Witter Reynolds
by John Guy
John Guy is a Certified Financial Planner and First Vice-president of Investments with the Indianapolis branch of Dean Witter Reynolds, Inc. His experience with investment committees and boards concerning investment policy spans an array of nonprofit organizations. Mr Guy is currently writing a book on the investment responsibilities of trustees.


Number 4, November/December 1992
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Free Your Board and Staff Through Executive Limitations
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Creates Policy and Stops Worrying
by John Carver

Is Your Board in a Rut? Shake Up Your Routine!
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Guest Presentations – Susan L. Golden, Fund-Raising Consultant, The Golden Group
by Susan L. Golden
The Golden Group is a fund-raising consultation firm based in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr Golden provides counsel to non-profit organizations in education, health care, economic development, the arts, and social services. Dr Golden's consulting practice specializes in helping organizations secure grants. Over 90% of her client proposals are funded.

Number 5, January 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Evaluating the Mission Statement
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver
I am indebted to those organizations that submitted mission statements in response to my requests in Issues 2 and 3. Thanks for bravely allowing your work to be examined according to the principles of the Policy Governance model. Space does not allow me to use all the mission statements sent in. For statements I received before December 1, I have commented directly to those who responded

Raising One Board from the Dead
by John Carver

Creating an effective mission statement for your organization
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Governance as parenting
by Jeffrey Davis, PhD
As a teacher and practitioner for 20 years, he has used his knowledge of human behavior to help systems - whether individuals, families, or work teams - function better. In addition to his organizational work in Team Building and in Total Quality Management, he has recently begun consulting with boards on learning the principles and concepts of Policy Governance. Dr. Davis practices in the Indianapolis area.


Number 6, March 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Fiduciary responsibility confronting the myth, creating the reality through effective board leadership
by John Carver

Crafting policy to guide your organizations budget
by John Carver

Crafting policy to safeguard your organizations actual fiscal condition
by John Carver

A simple matter of comparison: monitoring fiscal management in your organization
by John Carver


Number 7, May 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Giving, Getting, and Governing Finding a Place for Fundraising Among the Responsibilities of Leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Running Afoul of Governance
by John Carver

Owning Your Agenda: A Long-Term view Is the Key to Taking Charge
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Margaret Tyndall, PhD., CEO, YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh
by Margaret Tyndall

Number 8, July 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

Achieving meaningful diversity in the boardroom
by John Carver

Never cast in stone: flexible policy supports management - and saves board time
by John Carver

Handling complaints: using negative feedback to strengthen board policy
by John Carver


Number 9, September 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When board members act as staff advisers
by John Carver

Delegating bravely
by John Carver

When Board Members Are the Only Staff in Sight
by John Carver

Herbert Paine, consultant
by Herbert Paine
Herbert Paine is president of Paine Consulting Services, an Oakland, California-based enterprise specializing in organization development, strategic planning, and marketing. A nationally recognized expert on nonprofit organization management, Mr. Paine is former executive director of United Way of California.


Number 10, November 1993
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Onlin
e

Redefining board self-evaluation: The key to keeping on track
by John Carver

Crafting the board job description
by John Carver

Planning the board's conduct
by John Carver

Living up to your own expectations: implementing self-evaluation to make a difference in your organization
by John Carver


Number 11, January/ February 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

Can boards meet their obligations to funders, accreditors, and the law and still practice sound leadership?. Protecting governance from law, funders, and accreditors
by John Carver

Board Leadership
by John Carver

One Board Puts Teeth in its Attendance Requirements. Is Your Board Having Difficulty Reaching a Quorum?
by John Carver

Tips for creating advisory boards and committees
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

James P Cramer, CEO, American Institute of Architects
by James P Cramer
James P. Cramer is an educator and management and communications consultant. He is executive vice president and CEO of the American Institute of Architects in Washington, D.C., and is the former president of the American Architectural Foundation.

Number 12, March/April 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Should Anybody Be in Charge?. Making Hierarchy Work Exercising Appropriate Board Authority in the Service of Mission
by John Carver

Board leadership
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

To tell or not to tell: One CEO learns the right way to inform her board
by John Carver

Overheard at the workshop
by John Carver

Keep Your Essential Board Documents Handy. Keeping a Board Book That Works
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 13, May 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Protecting Board Integrity from the Renegade Board Member
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Learns How Polling Moves Meetings Along
by John Carver

Nine Steps to Implementing Policy Governance
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 14, July 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The Executive Committee: Turning a Governance Liability into an Asset
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

One Board Fails to Follow Its Own Monitoring Policy - and Courts Fiscal Disaster
by John Carver

Policy, Not Personality: Ensuring Governance Integrity Through a CEO Transition
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Alton Crews, Director of the Leadership Academy of the Southern Regional Education Board
by Alton Crews
Alton Crews' educational career spans forty-five years. During that period, he has served as teacher, principal, deputy superintendent, and, for more than three decades, superintendent in four different communities. He is the current director of the Leadership Academy for the Southern Regional Education Board.


Number 15, September 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Elected Boards: Meeting Their Special Governance Challenge
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Abstracting Up: Discovering the Big Issues Among the Trivia
by John Carver

Calculating the Real Costs of Governance
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Beyond Philosophy: The Final Word on Ends vs. Means
by John Carver


Number 16, November 1994
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What Do You Want from Your CEO? How to Express Board Concerns in Unmistakable Language
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Reforming Untrustworthy Boards
by John Carver


Number 17, January/ February 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Pinning down board process and the role of the chairperson
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Are you sure your minutes are really Your minutes? one board learns the hard way to read the fine print
by John Carver


Number 18, March/April 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Ownership
by John Carver

Understanding the special board-ownership relationship
by John Carver

Determining who your owners are
by John Carver

Connecting with the ownership
by John Carver

Connecting with the ownership
by John Carver

What to do if you find a consumer on your board
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver


Number 19, May/June 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Policy governance is not a "hands off" model
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A team of equals
by John Carver

Boards lead best when services, programs, and curricula are transparent
by John Carver

Any questions
by John Carver


Number 20, July/August 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Policies "Я" US
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

The CEO's objectives are not proper board business
by John Carver

Shaping up your bylaws
by John Carver


Number 21, September/October 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The misguided focus on administrative cost
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Competent boards can't have incompetent CEOs…not for long
by John Carver

What happens to conventional documents under policy governance?
by John Carver

Number 22, November/December 1995
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Governing in the shadow of a founder-CEO
by John Carver

On a Personal Note

by John Carver

A rose is a rose is a CEO
by John Carver

Who is in charge: Is your organization too staff-driven? too volunteer-driven?
by John Carver

Number 23, January/ February 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Recruiting leaders: What to look for in new board members
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A community board struggles with the cost of its results
by John Carver

Boards should not be the final authority but the Initial authority
by John Carver

Number 24, March/April 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When bad governance is required
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

From many boards to one: Incomplete merging confuses boards and staff
by John Carver

Board approvals and monitoring are very different actions
by John Carver

Michael Conduff, City Manager, Bryan, Texas
by Michael Conduff
Michael Conduff is city manager of Bryan, Texas, a community of 60,000 people. He has also served as city manager of Manhattan, Kansas, and of Pittsburg, Kansas, and he currently serves on the board of Texas City Management Association. Bryan began implementing Policy Governance at little more than a year ago.

Number 25, May/June 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Families of Boards Part I: Federations
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

How you can tell when your board is not using policy governance
by John Carver

Any Questions

by John Carver

Number 26, July/August 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Evaluating the CEO an effective approach to ensure future organizational success
by John Carver

Putting CEO evaluation in perspective
by John Carver

Getting it right from the start: The CEO's job description
by John Carver

Do you really have a CEO?
by John Carver

Self-assessment exercise 1: Your board's readiness for CEO Evaluation
by John Carver

Self-assessment exercise 2: Evaluating your evaluating
by John Carver

Should your CEO be a board member?
by John Carver

Off limits: What not to do in your CEO evaluation
by John Carver

A CEO Self-evaluation checklist
by John Carver

Any Questions
by John Carver

Number 27, September/October 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Families of boards part II: Holding companies
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A holding company board learns that different organizational levels deserve different questions
by John Carver

An ends-means exercise for your board
by John Carver

Number 28, November/December 1996
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


The "any reasonable interpretation" rule: Leap of faith or sine Qua non of delegation?
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Sometimes you have to fire your chair
by John Carver

Traditional governance's flawed alternatives to the "any reasonable interpretation" rule
by John Carver

Diane Tiveron, Attorney, Corey J. Hogan and Associates, Amherst, New York
by Diane Tiveron
Corey J. Hogan and Associates provides legal counsel to People, Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides services to people with disabling conditions in seven counties in western New York. Headquartered in Williamsville, a suburb of Buffalo, People, Inc. has 1,200 employees and a $35 million annual budget. The organization began implementing Policy Governance a year and a half ago.

Number 29, January/ February 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


If you want it done right, delegate it!
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

What if the committee chair just wants to know?
by John Carver

CEOs! guiding your board toward better governance
by John Carver

Number 30, March/April 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Your board's market surrogate obligation
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

A board learns that its ambiguous self-identity cannot be ignored
by John Carver

Giving measurement its due in policy governance
by John Carver

Honey, I shrunk the policies
by John Carver

Cindra Smith, Director of Education, Community College League of California
by Cindra Smith
Cindra Smith is director of education for the Community College League of California, a nonprofit state association serving California's seventy-one local community college districts. A large part of her job is to provide education programs for the seventy-one locally elected governing boards in California's community college system. I asked Ms. Smith to share her observations about the factors she thought were important as boards moved to adopt a Policy Governance approach on their board.

Number 31, May/June 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


When the founding parent stays on the board
by John Carver
In Issue 22 (Nov.-Dec. 1995), I wrote of the dilemma faced by a board when an organization's founding parent is the CEO. In this article I want to discuss the dilemma when the founding parent is a member of the board. By no means do all founders behave as portrayed in this article; many graciously adapt to their new role as board member. This article is written about those situations in which the transition has not been so adeptly managed.

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

What to do when staff take complaints directly to board members

by John Carver

The board of a trade association establishes ends policies
by John Carver
To help make the ends topic more concrete, in this and each of the next three issues of Board Leadership there will be an article about ends policies for a specific type of organization. Even if your organization is not one of those featured, you will be able to glean generally applicable principles that can be easily translated to your own organization.

Miriam Carver, governance consultant and author
by Miriam Carver
My wife, Miriam Carver, is not only an experienced Policy Governance consultant, she also teaches theory and implementation to other consultants. She has coauthored two books on the model, Reinventing Your Board: A Step-by-Step Guide to Implementing Policy Governance and A New Vision of Board Leadership: Governing the Community College, as well as three booklets in the Jossey-Bass CarverGuide series. In this Guest Presentation, Miriam speaks from her experience with thousands of board members on three continents.

Number 32, July/August 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What to do when your policies are all in place
by John Carver

All volunteers can be good board members - not!
by John Carver

A public school board establishes ends policies
by John Carver
This article is the second in a series of four, each examining ends development for a different kind of organization. Remember that ends policies are those in which the board describes the intended results of the organization, for whom those results are to be achieved, and the cost or relative worth of those results. In the last issue, I used a trade association as an example. In this issue, I'll discuss ends of an organization important to everyone - the public school system.

Any Questions
by John Carver

Number 33, September/October 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Boards should have their own voice
by John Carver

Another year of exciting gains
by John Carver

A board enshrines policy governance in its bylaws
by John Carver
Members of a nonprofit board once asked how they might require the use of Policy Governance in their bylaws. In this article, I consider the advisability of such a bylaws provision and what the nature of such a requirement might be.

A city council creates ends policies
by John Carver
Nowhere is governance reform more needed than in government. In this article, I continue with the third of my four-part series on creating ends policies - those policies established by the board that describe the results to be achieved by the organization, who is to receive the results, and the costs of these results. This time we will focus on the ends of municipal government. Let us examine the case of a city council with a mayor who operates chiefly as the chairperson and a city manager who is the CEO.

Number 34, November/December 1997
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


What to do with your board's philosophy, values, and beliefs
by John Carver

On a Personal Note
by John Carver

Is policy governance an all-or-nothing choice?
by John Carver

A hospital board creates ends policies
by John Carver
Hospitals literally hold the power of life and death over most of us at some point in our lives. The boards that govern these complex organizations, particularly in the United States and Canada, face staggering fiscal, political, and liability issues. In this fourth - and last - installment in a series on the development of ends policies, I illustrate the daunting task of creating ends policies as the board of a nonprofit hospital in a mid-size community might approach it.

A report on Bryan, Texas
by Carol Gabanna, Denise Paszkiewicz, and Catherine M. Raso

Number 35, January/ February 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online

The ultimate test of the board's ends leadership
by John Carver

Policy governance goes to the Netherlands
by John Carver

If your board isn't worth the cost of competence, it isn't worth much
by John Carver

Does your board drive away its most promising members?
by John Carver

Riding the bus with policy governance
by Roger L. Frick

Number 36, March/April 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Leading, following, and the wisdom to know the difference
by John Carver

Bullies on the board
by John Carver

A board learns that proper policy categories aren't just a clerical nicety
by John Carver

Policy governance won't work because…
by John Carver
Introductory Policy Governance workshops are usually mind-bending experiences for persons new to the concept. It is hard for thinking people not to find the step-by-step reasoning compelling. In a choice between the hodgepodge of practices that make up traditional governance and the simple, clear logic of Policy Governance, there is really no contest.

Barbara A. Greene on how a school board turned itself around
by Barbara A. Greene
In 1995 a school board approached Barbara Greene, a consultant to nonprofit and public boards, for help. The relations between the board and the superintendent of schools had broken down, and their problems were spilling over into the public arena. Citizens were losing confidence in the ability of the board and the superintendent, and the media was watching and reporting on their every move. Recently, Board Leadership's managing editor, Paula Stacey, talked with Greene about her experience in using the Policy Governance model to help turn around a troubled board.

Number 37, May/June 1998
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Why not set your quorum requirement at 100 percent?
by John Carver

Retraction
by John Carver

Beware the "quality" fetish
by John Carver
A recent consulting experience with a hospital board brought to my attention once again the insidious nature of a very popular concept: quality. This article recounts what I advised the board, its medical staff, and its administrators about that omnipresent, rarely questioned ideal called quality.

Is policy governance the One best way?
by John Carver
This question was raised at a recent workshop. It reminds me of an article with that question as a title published a few years ago in a prominent Canadian journal. Unfortunately, the author's failure to understand Policy Governance rendered his commentary of little value. But it is a legitimate question, though sometimes I hear it asked with an undertone of “surely you can't be saying this is the only way for boards to operate!” So, is Policy Governance the one best way?

Communicating with all members about results
by Sandra Gillis

Number 38, July/August 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


For school failure, the buck doesn't stop; it just fades away
by John Carver

Reining in a runaway chair
by John Carver

Group responsibility - requisite for good governance
by John Carver

Building a board from the ground up
by Rebecca Jamieson
In 1989 the Six Nations of the Grand River, a first-nation community in Canada, faced an interesting challenge: the federal government was planning to give them control of the local schools, and so they had to set about creating a school board. After much investigation, the community decided to use Policy Governance. Rebecca Jamieson, who was involved in this effort and who has been involved with other boards that use Policy Governance, talks about her experience.

Number 39, September/October 1998
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Onlin
e

The mechanics of direct inspection monitoring
by John Carver

And as for the corporate board…
by John Carver

Your auditor works for you
by John Carver
I dealt with a board sorely in need of reconsidering how it thought of its annual audit. Some board members treated the audit as an arcane, uninteresting, mechanical formality that had little to do with them. They were quite happy to let the “bean counters” on the board deal with the audit. (On another board, where such “bored” members were in the majority, the governing body regularly - and, to me, frighteningly - left all choices about auditors to the CEO!) This Case in Point recounts much of the discussion I had in trying to convince this board to assume a new perspective about the external audit.

Why is conceptual wholeness so difficult for boards?
by John Carver

Number 40, November/December 1998
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Implementing policy governance the slow way
by Brian Mitchell
In 1989, the Edmonton (Alberta) Catholic School Division - a publicly funded Catholic school division - began a slow and painstaking process of implementing Policy Governance. Though all involved were aware that in principle Policy Governance is best implemented quickly and completely, this board, which had been in existence for 110 years, needed more time. Finally, in 1997, the switch was completed. Where did the board find the discipline to keep moving toward Policy Governance? Brian Mitchell, who has been on the board since 1992, explains it was part necessity, part patience, and part dedication to pursuing the board's mission. The division's ends policies appear in the sidebar on page 2.

Mission statement checklist
by John Carver

Thoughts on the Edmonton catholic school division's mission and ends statements
by John Carver

Watch out for misleading interpretations of governance research
by John Carver

What is good governance and where does it come from?
by Randee Loucks
In her position as the manager of trustee development for the Southern Ontario Library Service, Randee, Loucks is responsible for making sure that library governing boards do the best job possible. In her work, she has learned a lot about what it takes to govern well and the role polices and a good model can play. Board Leadership's managing editor, Paula Stacey, talked with Loucks about these issues.

Number 41, January/ February 1999
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Making the commitment to policy governance
by Raymond Lemieux

Can a board establish ends policies without identifying its owners first?
by John Carver
Board Leadership recently talked with Matt Madonna, president of the Southwest Division of the American Cancer Society, about the organization's transition to Policy Governance.

Nine steps to implementing policy governance
by John Carver

Who sets the board agenda?
by John Carver

Number 42, March/April 1999
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Monitoring is the best policy
by Ervin Brinker
Two years ago the board of Summit Pointe, a community mental health authority in Battle Creek, Michigan, began implementing Policy Governance. The board completed the drafting of its ends policies in the summer of 1998. But well before the ends policies were completed, the board implemented a comprehensive approach to monitoring its policies and its performance that it is following rigorously. Board Leadership asked the CEO of Summit Pointe to explain this monitoring approach and how it is working. In Carver on the Case (page 4), John Carver comments on it.

The Summit Pointe Experience
by John Carver

Living up to your own expectations
by John Carver

Helping boards help each other
by Teresa Durham
One of the keys to the success of the effort to bring Policy Governance to Battle Creek is the use of volunteer trainers to assist boards as they implement the model. Teresa Durham has worked as a trainer for four years, helping boards make the transition to Policy Governance. Also, with the help of fellow trainers, Teresa facilitates monthly Carver Connection meetings at which boards can get together, share ideas, and learn to help each other. Recently Board Leadership spoke with Teresa about her work, what it involves, and why it is so valuable.

Number 43, May/June 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Finding unity and strength through board diversity
by Leslie Tremaine
When Louisiana's Jefferson Parish Human Services Authority was first created nine years ago, its board was made up of a fairly traditional group of people - the kind, says executive director Leslie Tremaine, who “typically get named by folks to do things like this.” But in the intervening years the makeup of the board changed considerably so that it is now truly diverse. This change didn't happen on its own; it took a conscious effort on the part of the board. Tremaine describes how the group went about achieving board diversity and how this diversity is making a difference.

What can boards do to ensure that they are providing full representation of an organization's ownership?
by John Carver
Recently Mary Jo Czaplewski, CEO of the National Council on Family Relations, posed the following question on the Policy Governance Forum Web site. For readers of Board Leadership, John Carver offers his thoughts in response.

Achieving meaningful diversity in the boardroom
by John Carver

Number 44, July/August 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Understanding and linking with the moral ownership of your organization
by John Carver
The Policy Governance Fieldbook, from which this article was adapted, explores the real-life experiences of eleven organizations that are applying the Policy Governance model. In choosing which organizations to include, the authors looked for a range of organizations that had made varied degrees of progress in implementing the model. Possessing a wide range of experience with the model, the authors are Caroline Oliver, general editor, Mike Conduff, Susan Edsall, Carol Gabanna, Randee Loucks, Denise Paszkiewicz, Catherine Raso and Linda Stier. This article is adapted from a chapter on one of the most challenging and potentially fulfilling aspects of using Policy Governance: Identifying and linking with owners.

A CEO wonders how to organize functions under policy governance
by Bob Biles
The Following Discussion comes directly from the Policy Governance Web site. Because it opened up issues regarding the management implications of Policy Governance - something of potential interest to readers that isn't usually addressed in Board Leadership - we are publishing the discussion in full, including John Carver's contributions. Also, for Board Leadership readers only, John Carver provides further insight and comment. We thank Bob Biles and Michael Stanger for giving us permission to use their contributions.

Our commitment to enforcing good policy governance
by David Stockman
David Stockman, senior vice president of Lawry's Restaurants, Inc., chairs the board of the California Restaurant Association (CRA). The association represents California's $28.5 billion restaurant industry. The CRA board reached a pivotal point on March 8, 1999, as it adopted new, carefully crafted policies to put the Policy Governance model into effect. Here are Stockman's introductory words at the March 8 board meeting. We include them to illustrate one chair's conscientious effort to remind his colleagues, gently but firmly, not only of the commitment to discipline the board has adopted but also of the obligation the board has given him to enforce that discipline.

Number 45, September/October 1999
Print version: Available, please contact jbsubs@jbp.com
Electronic version: Online


Just how should boards communicate with owners?
by Eileen Kradel
In the Last Issue of Board Leadership, the article “Understanding and Linking with the Moral Ownership of Your Organization” explored what it means for boards to embrace their moral accountability to owners. The article pointed out that linking with owners - with the people for whom the board members act as trustees - is one of the main jobs boards take on under Policy Governance. What does this mean in action? What does this linkage really look like? To address these questions, Board Leadership asked the chair of the board of trustees of Westark College in Little Rock, Arkansas, to describe how the board set about the work of linking with owners. Westark is new to Policy Governance; the board adopted it formally in early 1999 and met for the first time as a Policy Governance board in May. As Eileen Kradel describes, connecting with owners is a defining feature of the work of adopting and implementing the model.

The Westark College Board
by John Carver

Policy governance and school boards? You've got to be kidding!
by Linda J. Dawson and Dr. Randy Quinn
Linda J. Dawson is president of the Aspen Group International, Inc.; Randy Quinn is a founding partner of the Aspen Group. As former executives at the Colorado Association of School Boards, the authors tried numerous times to interest members in Policy Governance. Their story reveals that perseverance can pay off. The authors also share insights on implementing Policy Governance that will be helpful to readers on all kinds of boards. Dawson and Quinn are hosts of an upcoming conference in Hilton Head that will focus on all aspects of using Policy Governance. They can be contacted at aspengrpintl@csn.net or (303) 478-0125.

Number 46, November/December 1999
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Linking with owners: The dos and don'ts
by Jannice Moore
In the past two issues of Board Leadership, the feature articles explored first the imperative under Policy Governance of linking with your organization's owners and then how one board went about this work. Now, in the last of our articles on ownership linkage, Jannice Moore, an independent consultant and coach to governing boards, offers some practical tips for ensuring that the ways you reach out to owners will yield the kind of in-depth information necessary to shape effective ends policies.

Why only the CEO can interpret the board's ends and executive limitations policies
by John Carver
In policy governance, the board instructs the CEO with ends policies and with executive limitations policies. These policies are ordinarily few and brief, and hence the language used by the board in these policies is of utmost importance. One aspect of Policy Governance that many boards struggle with is that after taking so much care in crafting policies, they have to grant the CEO the exclusive right to interpret their words. John Carver looks at how one board tackled this issue.

A board member's approach to the job
by John Carver
One of the reasons a board member's job is so difficult is that “the job” is essentially a group responsibility. In fact, it is hard to discuss how an individual is to approach a group task. Yet each board member has a responsibility to come with an effective mind-set, to carry out his or her part of preparation and participation, and to take responsibility for the group. These are not always easy tasks. Here is some advice on the frame of mind and individual preparations necessary for any board member to play an effective role in creating a productive board. (This advice is adapted from Your Roles and Responsibilities as a Board Member, Carver Guide No. 2, pp. 13-17).

Profile of a board member
by Steve Engle and Jerome Andrews
Steve Engle and Jerome Andrews of the Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) present here a profile they devised to instruct their board's nominating committee when seeking new members. In commenting on their purpose in developing this profile, Engle and Andrews observed, “Board members are trustees for the membership and consequently must bear initial responsibility for the integrity of governance. The board is responsible for its own development, its own job design, its own discipline, and its own performance”. Further, they said, and the board agreed, that “in order to recruit quality members to the ALOA board of directors, the board should be sure to let candidates know before they come on the board that the system used is Policy Governance. We must let our prospective new members know how the board sees the job of governance. They can then make an informed choice about their willingness to serve”.

Number 47, January/ February 2000
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What happens when a federation board adopts policy governance?
by John Carver
Most of the boards discussed in Board Leadership govern single, independent organizations. However, as John Carver pointed out in the May-June 1996 issue (no. 25), Policy Governance applies as well to “families” of boards or federations in which multiple organizations own a single organization. When federations adopt Policy Governance, they wrestle with many of the same issues that single organizations do, but they also face some special challenges - challenges that are worthwhile to consider because they shed light on important aspects of implementing Policy Governance that are relevant to all boards. To gain insight into these challenges and ways in which federation boards can address them, Board Leadership spoke recently to Anne Dalton, director of governance and strategy development for the Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc. We first asked her to describe how the Association is structured and what led its board to adopt Policy Governance.

A staff ethics committee wants special access to the board - what does the board want?
by John Carver

When owners and customers are the same people
by John Carver
One of the issues raised in the interview with Anne Dalton in this issue was the importance of sorting out who are customers and who are owners of an organization. This is important for all boards but can of course be especially difficult for membership associations and federations where there is 100 percent overlap between the two groups. Here are some insights from John Carver on the owner-customer confusion.

AMAROK policy on board committee structure
by John Carver
This is the first in a series of articles in which John Carver will point out improvements needed in policies submitted by Board Leadership readers. In this first article, however, he felt the policy to be reviewed is so good as to be held up as an example to others. He is grateful to AMAROK, a Phoenix-based trade association of drywall manufacturers, for allowing him to use its governance process policy, titled “Board Committee Structure”.

Number 48, March/April 2000
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Two people in the CEO role: Can it work?
by Catherine Raso
At times, the CEO job may look so challenging and appear to require such a wide breadth of knowledge and experience that boards are moved to ask, “Can one person really do it all?” This is when many boards consider actually putting two people in this position rather than one. Although it is possible using Policy Governance to delegate the CEO role to two individuals, it requires an enormous amount of discipline to avoid the problems that inevitably come with such a decision. Policy Governance consultant Catherine Raso recently worked with a board that was struggling with this decision and has done a lot of thinking about the pros and cons of the dual CEO. We asked her to share what she has learned with Board Leadership.

The CEO's role in policy governance

by John Carver and Miriam Mayhew Carver

Exercising appropriate board authority in the service of mission
by John Carver

Can boards tell CEOs to stick to their own budgets?
by John Carver

Number 49, May/June 2000
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Policy governance demands that we choose our words carefully
by Gary Davis
Gary Davis is a Policy Governance consultant who regularly participates in the Policy Governance Forum on the Web site www.carvergovernance.com. Pursuant to a dialogue he conducted with another participant on the topic of language, we asked him to write this article.

It's not the board's role to act as a management consultant to the CEO
by John Carver

Good governance is not about control - it's about remote control
by John Carver
Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman of the Gallup Organization have written a challenging book for managers, First, Break All the Rules (Simon & Schuster, 1999). Their conclusions are built on twenty-five years' research with over a million employees. Whereas the authors deal with many facets that they found to characterize great managers, in this article I want to relate one of their points to principles of Policy Governance.

Number 50, July/August 2000
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Policy governance as a social contract

by John Carver
Last year, John Carver spent time in England revisiting the work of some famous thinkers on society and governance. Here he explores how these philosophers can inform the practice of using Policy Governance to exercise board leadership.

One board's policy on evaluating its CEO
by John Carver

Creating your policy governance tool kit
by Caroline Oliver
The Board that is working hard to use Policy Governance faces a special challenge when searching for tools to help it do its work. It needs to make sure that the tools it chooses and the tools it develops on its own are truly a help and not a hindrance in getting the full benefits of Policy Governance. Caroline Oliver, a governance consultant based in Canada and editor of The Policy Governance Fieldbook Practical Lessons, Tips, and Tools from the Experiences of Real-World Boards (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999), sheds some light on what kind of tools are helpful and how to choose wisely.

Number 51, September/October 2000
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


Sustaining policy governance
by Michael A. Conduff
Most boards work very hard to implement Policy Governance, but what happens years later when most or all of the members involved in that work have been replaced? Because Policy Governance is as much about how board members approach their jobs as it is about policy, ensuring that Policy Governance lives on is a major challenge. We asked Mike Conduff, board consultant and CEO of an organization whose board has been struggling with the question of how to ensure the sustainability of Policy Governance, to consider what it takes to meet this challenge. Mike can be contacted at mconduff@myriad.net.

John Carver tightens up a boards' ends policies
by John Carver

Boards behaving badly
by Caroline Oliver

Number 52, November/December 2000
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Cultivating good board manners
by Caroline Oliver
In the previous issue of Board Leadership, governance consultant Caroline Oliver outlined the kind of “bad behavior” that boards typically engage in and how it can interfere with the board's ability to operate effectively as a team. Here she turns the tables and looks at what constitutes good board manners and how they can be cultivated.

One organization carefully sets forth what difference it wants to make
by John Carver

Rethinking the executive committee
by John Carver
Many people who are familiar with Policy Governance are aware that John Carver believes that executive committees are widely overused. However, that does not necessarily mean that Policy Governance absolutely forbids their use. Here John Carver clarifies what is wrong with executive committees, suggests ways to avoid them, and outlines how, if absolutely necessary, they can be used wisely and without undermining the benefits of Policy Governance.

Number 53, January/ February 2001
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Meaningful monitoring
by Jannice Moore
One of the most important and most challenging aspects of implementing Policy Governance is monitoring whether and how well the policies are being put into practice. Most boards choose to monitor their policies by means of an internal report written by the CEO that provides evidence of compliance. Here Jannice Moore, a full-time governance consultant who has helped a wide variety of boards in Canada implement Policy Governance and who acts as “governance coach” to many others, gives some advice on how CEOs might improve these internal monitoring reports, highlighting common pitfalls and explaining how they can be avoided. In the next issue of Board Leadership, she will discuss monitoring issues from the board's perspective.

A public utilities board's executive limitations policy
by John Carver
An ends policy of Colorado Springs Utilities (CSU) was reviewed in Issue 51 of Board Leadership (Sept.-Oct. 2000). At that time, John Carver promised to examine one more policy from this public utility board. So here is CSU's policy regarding water rights. (The company is engaged in providing other utility services, but this policy relates only to the water portion of its job).

Taking policy governance to the mainstream
by Caroline Oliver
Have you ever expressed your enthusiasm for Policy Governance only to be met by a blank stare? Do you wonder what could be done to create greater awareness of the advantages of Policy Governance both for your own board and for others? Caroline Oliver, Policy Governance consultant, general editor of The Policy Governance Fieldbook, and designated chair of the soon-to-be-launched Policy Governance Association, looks to the world of high technology for some answers.

Number 54, March/April 2001
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Meaningful monitoring: The board's view
by Jannice Moore
In the last issue of Board Leadership, governance consultant Jannice Moore described how CEOs can create useful reports that would provide evidence of compliance with board policies. In this issue, she looks at monitoring from the board's perspective.

What a well-worded ends policy looks lik by John Carver

A "reasonable interpretation of ends": What exactly does it mean?
by Michael Conduff and Denise Paszkiewicz
What does it mean to engage in a “reasonable interpretation” of a board's ends policies? Is there a particular process a CEO should go through? What's the best way to make sure that the interpretation is indeed reasonable and that it is meaningful and detailed enough to allow the CEO and the staff to get on with the business of making the ends actually happen? To help address these questions, Michael Conduff, a consultant and city manager in Bryan, Texas, and Denise Paszkiewicz, director of program development at People Inc., describe the process their organizations use and why.

Number 55, May/June 2001
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Does policy governance give too much authority to the CEO?
by John Carver

Getting personal
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance may supply a coherent framework for board work, but even the most conscientious board must still find a way to manage the personal dynamics that can determine how well people work together. In this article, governance consultant Caroline Oliver presents one useful approach for understanding and working effectively with different personality types.

Clarifying the distinction between owners and customers
by John Carver
In BL54, John Carver reviewed the ends policy of the fictional American Association of Trekking Outfitters (AATO). (That policy was actually a composite culled from several organizations.) In this issue, Carver critiques a governance process policy of the same make-believe federation that deals with the question of distinguishing owners and customers. For more information on the owner-customer distinction, see two articles in BL 18, “Understanding the Special Board-Ownership Relationship” and “Connecting with the Ownership”.

Number 56, July/August 2001
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Can things go horribly wrong for boards that use policy governance?

by John Carver

On creating a new association
by Caroline Oliver
Caroline Oliver, who writes regularly for Board Leadership, has recently been involved in the startup of a new association, the International Policy Governance Association, which she now chairs. Here she offers a case history, sharing some of the governance challenges and lessons learned in building an organization and its governing structure from the ground up. If you have ideas or views that you would like to pass on to the association, e-mail Caroline Oliver at coliver@cgo.wave.ca.

How can the board ensure that CEO data are accurate?
by John Carver
The following exchange took place on John Carver's www.carvergovernance.com Web site forum. Carver's responses have been expanded to provide greater usefulness to Board Leadership readers.


Number 57, September/October 2001
Print version: Out of print
Electronic version: Online


How executive limitations policies can go awry
by John Carver

He who pays the piper calls the tune?
by Caroline Oliver
Funding may be vital to the operations of any organization, but that does not mean that the funders should determine an organization's ends. As Caroline Oliver, general editor of the Policy Governance Fieldbook and current chair of the International Policy Governance Association, points out here, the board is beholden to the ownership before any other stakeholders, funders included. That is why the only group that legitimately “calls the tune” is the ownership. Caroline Oliver can be contacted at 905-337-9412.

When the CEO and board are both elected
by John Carver
The following exchange took place recently on John Carver's Policy Governance Forum at www.carvergovernance.com. Even though many readers may not be operating in circumstances where the CEO and board are both elected, John and Miriam Carver's responses, which have been expanded for Board Leadership readers, shed light on a fundamental principle of Policy Governance that relates to all organizations: what it means for the CEO to be accountable to the board.

Number 58, November/December 2001
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What use is business experience on a nonprofit or governmental board?
by John Carver
Most boards assume that business experience can be a great asset in board members. And it can be-but as John Carver explains, not in the ways many managers may assume.

Uncovering the value of the right word
by Caroline Oliver
Most people join boards for selfless reasons, because they want to “make a difference.” Received wisdom tells us that making a difference is grueling and overwhelming work, and unfortunately the muddled governance procedures of most boards seem to prove the case. In this article, Caroline Oliver, chair of the International Policy Governance Association, shows us why the Policy Governance board must disabuse itself of the orthodoxy that says that there is a one-to-one relationship between effort and effectiveness. Relying on just a handful of concise policies, the Policy Governance board dictates a whole range of organizational ends and so has more time to govern than the board that busies itself with staff means. The Policy Governance board may have a more straightforward job than the traditional board, but it is also more effective.

How can staff know that board advice is not actually veiled instruction?
by John Carver

Number 59, January/ February 2002
Print version: Out of print
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Democracy unleashed
by Caroline Oliver

Surviving the transition: Reigniting the passion
by John Carver
When new members join a Policy Governance board, it is imperative that they be thoroughly oriented to the theory and practice of the model. Well-planned orientation not only ensures that new members will be stewards of good governance but also helps veteran members revitalize their own commitment to the model. In this article, Randee Loucks breaks down, orientation into a logical five-step process.

What should government flinders require of nonprofit governance?
by John Carver

Number 60, March/April 2002
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Policy governance as a value investment: Succession planning
by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance requires a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the first of several articles that will examine behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. How can they be sure to make a “value investment” that will stand the test of time, rather than a “day trade” with possible short-term gain but not necessarily substantive gain in the long run? Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In this article, she considers the importance of succession planning. Future articles will consider the role of good information and planning in making Policy Governance a value investment.

Isn't the hierarchical nature of policy governance out of step with modern participative organizational styles?
by John Carver

Means, ends, and ideals
by John Carver
In this article, John Carver considers the ends policies of a women's center. He finds an unusually well conceived ends statement but also uncovers a common error in the crafting of mega-ends policies. Like so many other organizations, this one appears to have committed itself to an end so ambitious as to be practically unattainable. The article shows that it is important to distinguish between a vision of a better world that motivates a board and a result that a board can realistically commit its organization to accomplish in the world.

Number 61, May/June 2002
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Value investing: A governance action plan
by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance involves a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the second of several articles that will examine behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. How can they be sure to make a “value investment” that will stand the test of time, rather than a “day trade” with possible short-term gain but not necessarily substantive gain in the long run? Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In Issue 60 of Board Leadership, she discussed succession planning, orientation for prospective and new board members, length of tenure, and the need to be committed to the principles of the model, even when the going gets rough. In this article, she introduces the idea of a Governance Action Plan (GAP). A GAP is not the establishment of ends policies but rather a tool that boards can use to set realistic objectives for themselves and to monitor their own progress in their implementation of Policy Governance.

The cult of efficiency
by Caroline Oliver
In 1964, a professor named Raymond Callahan published a book titled Education and the Cult of Efficiency, and since then the concept has worked its way into general organizational parlance. In Policy Governance terms, the “cult of efficiency” describes a dangerous preoccupation with means without first identifying ends. How can we know if we're efficient if we don't first understand what it is we're trying to accomplish? The cult of efficiency is the subject of a recent lecture by a conflict management professor named Janice Gross Stein, later published in book form. In this article, Caroline Oliver considers the ways in which Stein's ideas about the cult of efficiency coincide with, and differ from, the Policy Governance concepts of ends and means.

Why should the board use negative wording about the staffs means?
by John Carver

Number 62, July/August 2002
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Policy governance: The story so far
by Caroline Oliver
Sometimes it takes a crisis to provoke change. The Enron debacle is just such a crisis, and with the first book on Policy Governance in the corporate sector hitting the shelves this summer, this could be a pivotal moment in the history of the development of Policy Governance. Caroline Oliver marks this occasion by laying down the story so far. Perhaps understanding how far Policy Governance has come will lay the groundwork for the future; this article will at least provide a record of the state of Policy Governance in the summer of 2002.

A governance information system

by Jannice Moore
Implementing Policy Governance requires a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is the final article in a three-part series examining behaviors of boards that invest wisely in Policy Governance. Based on her experience with a variety of boards that have implemented the model, Jannice Moore shares some of the conditions and behaviors that contribute to value investing. In Issue 61 of Board Leadership, she discussed the idea of a Governance Action Plan. In this article, she addresses the idea of a Governance Information System in contributing to Policy Governance as a value investment.

Is there a fundamental difference between governance and management?

by John Carver

Number 63, September/October 2002
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Questions and answers about good governance
by Caroline Oliver
The Nonprofit Board Answer Book is a well-established text in the governance field. In This article, Caroline Oliver, governance consultant and author, reviews the new edition of the Answer Book from a Policy Governance perspective.

Filling board vacancies
by John Carver

Boards of boards!
by John Carver

Uncommon titles…
by John Carver

Does policy governance prohibit staff from talking with board members?
by John Carver

Number 64, November/December 2002
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What are the other models?
by Susan Mogensen
The discussion forums on PolicyGovernance.com host many illuminating conversations about governance, and occasionally, Board Leadership publishes a particularly articulate and timely post, with grateful acknowledgment of the author. The following is one such post: A pointed question about the alternatives to Policy Governance.

Policy governance and other governance models compared
by Caroline Oliver
Many observers would say that Policy Governance is the first “governance model,” but boards are presented with a range of other options. In this article, Caroline Oliver gives an overview of those other options. What are they? How do they function? Are they really models, or are they merely descriptions of some common board arrangements? What are their relative advantages and disadvantages? And most important, are they likely to foster good governance?

How can an organization's statements of vision, beliefs, values, and philosophy be integrated into policy governance policy?
by John Carver


Number 65, January/ February 2003
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"Messy democracies": Should they be protected or cleaned up?
by Bill Charney

In the minority
by Caroline Oliver

What if board members "just want to know" about some aspect of operations?
by John Carver

Number 66, March/April 2003
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Can policy governance® enhance the complex job of state commissions and boards?
by Larry Hermen
The practice of Policy Governance by a state-appointed commission or board is often complicated by the circumstances that spurred its creation and the realities that guide its operation. This is especially true when state legislatures create commissions and boards that have their members appointed by the governor. How can a state commission or board so conceived enjoy many of the benefits found by nonprofit boards practicing Policy Governance? How can such a commission or board navigate the often built- in challenges to the main principles of Policy Governance, especially as it relates to the role of its executive? Governance consultant Larry Hermen, a graduate of the Policy Governance Academy, briefly describes the accomplishments thus far by such a board in Michigan.

Dealing with the board's first-order and second-order worries: Borrowing trouble effectively
by John Carver
Planning is critical, but it is important that a board distinguish between planning to achieve ends and avoid unacceptable means and actually achieving ends and avoiding unacceptable means. Achievement is the primary concern of a Policy Governance board. However, if a board has credible concerns that management may not complete sufficient planning, it can be useful to create carefully crafted executive limitations policies on planning.

The trap of answering your CEO's request for more guidance
by John Carver

Theory aversion
by Caroline Oliver

Number 67, May/June 2003
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Why size matters
by Caroline Oliver
There are a number of reasons why a board may be large, among them the desire to have diverse representation. But whatever the reasons, there comes a point at which a board becomes too cumbersome to effectively represent its ownership. It is difficult to have meaningful debate in large groups - progress is slow, factions may form, and resources are wasted. In this article, Caroline Oliver lays out some critical questions that boards should consider in order to determine if their membership is too big; she then offers some preliminary suggestions about how a board may get its membership to optimum size and maximum effectiveness.

A new basis for governance effectiveness research
by John Carver
Most governance research to date has consisted of descriptions of various types of governance arrangements. Absent from the literature is an underlying organizing principle, a conception of the fundamental purpose of governance. Without this underlying principle, attempts to assess effectiveness will fail. In this article, John Carver proposes a succinct definition of the purpose of governance and draws out some necessary consequences of this definition. This conception of the purpose of governance can serve as an underlying principle to guide research on the effectiveness of governance.

What do the new federal governance requirements for corporate audit committees mean for the policy governance board?
by John Carver

Number 68, July/August 2003
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Developing group discipline
by Caroline Oliver

Committee mania among city councils
by John Carver

Board access to the internal auditor
by John Carver
More and more organizations are beginning to create a position for an ethics officer or internal auditor. Such a position can be a great asset to an organization, but it is fraught with ambiguity. To whom does this auditor report? Is it a staff position under CEO authority? Or is it a staff position intended to report to the board? If the latter, how can the integrity of the CEO's position be maintained? In this brief article, John Carver clarifies how such a position can function effectively in a Policy Governance board.

Why in policy governance are customary management words like goal, objective procedure, and strategy discouraged?
by John Carver

Number 69, September/October 2003
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The view from Hong Kong
by Caroline Oliver
Most readers of Board Leadership are engaged with governance in the nonprofit and public sectors. In this article, Caroline Oliver takes a look at a recent report from Hong Kong that gives an overview of what is happening in the corporate sector there and asks what lessens, if any, can be learned for governance generally.

Governance rehearsal: A new tool
by Miriam Carver

Doesn't policy governance require too much confidence in the CEO?
by John Carver

Number 70, November/December 2003
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When owners don't agree
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance boards know that the source of their authority is their owners, and sometimes that means that their problems have just begun. It is all very well knowing clearly who your owners are, but it can get pretty tricky if they turn out to have conflicting views about what the organization should be about or where it should go. A surprising number of boards are in this position, and how they handle this problem can be a hallmark of their leadership.

The big picture: Policy governance and democracy
by Susan Mogensen

What is the role of an advocacy group in effective governance?
by John Carver

Number 71, January/ February 2004
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Ten strategies to help ensure the sustainability of policy governance in the public school environment
by Linda J. Dawson and Randy Quinn
A board's decision to adopt and faithfully implement Policy Governance is the first level of commitment. To ensure that the current board's commitment is sustainable as a legacy of leadership and good governance is quite another challenge. This is a particularly acute challenge for public boards.

Carver policy governance in Canada: A lawyer's defense
by Hugh M. Kelly

Can you really separate ends from means? Shouldn't the board and staff work as partners?
by John Carver

If corporate governance is a fad, we need more fads
by John Carver

Number 72, March/April 2004
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Governing excellence: Living in a new paradigm from theory to reality
by Linda Stier
John Carver refers to Policy Governance as a new paradigm for governance and governing boards. He has called it “a paradigm tailored to the special circumstances of governance” that enables us “to apply wisdom more coherently.” That's a bold statement but one that can be easily understood. A paradigm is something serving as an example or model of how things should be done. Thus Policy Governance serves as a model of how governance should be conceived. Yet living or operating in a new paradigm requires shifting from the paradigm we are currently in to operating in a new paradigm. It's the shifting of a paradigm that's difficult to comprehend, let alone realize.

On scurvy, elephants, and governance vitamins
by Jannice Moore

"Shouldn't this information be confidential between me and my staff?"
by John Carver

Number 73, May/June 2004
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How to tell board means from staff means
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
The distinction between ends and means will be familiar to readers of Board Leadership. The board determines the broadest organizational ends, leaving to the staff farther ends as well as all organizational means that fall within board-stated limits. Yet the board itself has operational concerns, such as scheduling meetings and setting agendas; that is to say, the board has its own means. Though this situation seems uncomplicated, in fact it generates considerable confusion and opportunity for the blurring of roles. In this article, John and Miriam Carver clarify what means belong to the staff and what means belong to the board.

Miriam Carver becomes executive coeditor
by John Carver

Won't a larger board mean there is greater diversity in governance?
by John Carver

You claim that policy governance is a universal model for governance. Why is a universal model even needed?
by John Carver

It worries me that in the policy governance system, the board gives a huge amount of authority to the CEO. What makes this OK?
by Miriam Carver

Number 74, July/August 2004
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Strange Ends
by Caroline Oliver
The concept of ends can appear to have some paradoxical characteristics. Using her experience in ends policy development, Caroline Oliver explores these apparent paradoxes and helps us understand why they occur and how to deal with them.

When a policy governance board hires a new CEO, what are some important dos and don'ts to remember during the hiring process and the new CEO's early weeks?
by Miriam Carver

Sticking to the process without getting stuck
by Susan Mogensen

Number 75, September/October 2004
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The mighty meeting
by Caroline Oliver
In this article, Caroline Oliver considers, in depth, the subject of Policy Governance and board meetings. She shows how Policy Governance principles of ownership, accountability, board holism, delegation, and crafting of effective policy can serve as the groundwork for successful meetings. From this starting point, with a little critical attention, board members can take control of their meetings, making them not only more productive and efficient but even enlightening and fun.

In policy governance, the board is supposed to speak with one voice to the CEO. Yet our board relies to some extent on CEO advice when we make our decisions. Is this OK?
by Miriam Carver

Number 76, November/December 2004
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The power and the glory: Embracing the joy of accountability
by Susan Mogensen

Using information technology to sustain policy governance
by Ray Tooley
Can Policy Governance provide a long-term sustainable model for owner-accountable effective governance? The answer is a resounding yes, but there are many challenges boards face in becoming mature and seasoned users of this comprehensive system. This article will examine some of the obstacles to achieving user-friendly Policy Governance sustainability and how information technology can be used to overcome the barriers on the road to success.

Why shouldn't a board set ends policies one program at a time?
by John Carver

Number 77, January/ February 2005
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A debatable alliance
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note governance codes
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Policy governance top ten
by Susan Rogers

Now let's really reform governance
by John Carver
Corporate governance reform has become a growth industry around the world. In most countries, new expectations about transparency, conflicts of interest, and composition have taken the voluntary form of “conform or explain.” In the United States, reforms came in the more authoritative form of legislation the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX), sponsored by Senator Paul S. Sarbanes and Congressman Michael G. Oxley. The law was passed in response to various recent corporate debacles. It is not the first such reform, nor will it be the last, although due to its legal force it is the most conspicuous in recent history. Although SOX applies to listed companies, many boards of nonprofit organizations and units of local government mistakenly thinking SOX is the last word in good governance have tried to apply its provisions to their own situations voluntarily. In fact, SOX does improve many widespread corporate practices, but it is not a complete gover nance system and in fact does nothing to address the nature of corporate governance itself. In other words, SOX, along with less legalistic reforms around the world, provides some useful patches for the primitive state of corporate governance but leaves it only in a newly patched condition. The following article originally appeared in Directors Monthly.

Number 78, March/April 2005
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The legal and fiduciary duties of directors
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

On a Personal Note policy governance and the law
by John Carver

Legal concerns with policy governance
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

The contrast between accountability and liability
by John Carver

Number 79, May/June 2005
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Sarbanes-Oxley: Reconciling legal compliance with good governance
by Jim Hyatt and Bill Charney

On a Personal Note our second legal issue
by John Carver

When legal counsel is uninformed
by Bill Charney and Jim Hyatt
Boards often look to attorneys to guide their decisions about governance practice. For example, legal counsel is normally asked for help in revising bylaws, as they usually need to be revised with the adoption of Policy Governance. Legal knowledge, however, is not the same as governance knowledge. Bill Charney and Jim Hyatt's article “Legal Concerns with Policy Governance” (in Issue 78 of Board Leadership) addressed issues periodically seen as problematic by attorneys seeking to minimize legal risks for their clients. In this article, Charney and Hyatt explore misunderstandings that arise when an attorney lacks an understanding of Policy Governance and provide suggestions for effective board responses.

Independent? From whom?
by Miriam Carver

Number 80, July/August 2005
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The inspired board
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note the problem with familiar rituals
by Miriam Carver

Board accountability in highly constrained environments
by Caroline Oliver
The Policy Governance system, like any effective system, is based on a series of “first principles. This article discusses the principle of accountability and its meaning for boards with very limited apparent authority.

How can a board use a consent agenda both to satisfy external requirements that the board be involved in operational means and to meet its duty of care?
by Bill Chamey and Jim Hyatt

What if our attorney advises that we change limitations policies to prohibit the CEO from "knowingly" allowing unlawful, unethical, or imprudent activities?
by Bill Chamey and Jim Hyatt

Our board is self-perpetuating. What is the Policy Governance principle with respect to how long board terms should be?
by Miriam Carver

Number 81, September/October 2005
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The meaning of constituency
by Caroline Oliver

On a Personal Note how do we assess a charity's worthiness?
by Miriam Carver

Ends that make a difference: Boldly creating the future
by John Carver
John Carver urges boards to leap beyond the simple matter of whether this or that is really an ends issue and move on to the real challenge: to set ever higher ends expectations. Boards spend far too much time fussing with the ends concept rather than using it. One of Carver's reasons for constructing the Policy Governance model was to enable boards powerfully and unrelentingly to impel managerial performance. The preliminary requirement for that is to focus on the right things free of the clutter which the ends-means concept enables. But for boards to demand doable but increasingly extraordinary performance requires that they add the human elements of farsightedness, daring, and leadership. The following is an adaptation of Carver's keynote address to the annual con-ference of the International Policy Governance Association in Phoenix, June 3, 2005.

Why all the fuss about the peculiar Policy Governance ends concept?
by John Carver

Number 82, November/December 2005
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Why the unique approach to measurement and monitoring under policy governance®?
by Richard M. Biery

On a Personal Note policy governance conferences, academies, and seminars
by John Carver

Policy governance and "best practices"
by John Carver
A popular phrase that has grown in use over the past couple of decades is “best practices.” In this article, John Carver explains why proponents of Policy Governance tend to shy away from the expression. Carver does not object to the notion that it is desirable to make small-scale improvements in individual practices, but he points out that such activity is in itself insufficient to truly improve governance since it implies a reliance on already established conceptual frameworks. Policy Governance calls for a break with received wisdom and the adoption of a more logical governance framework. Once within the structure of Policy Governance, however, boards should indeed look for ways to improve their practices.

News reports through policy governance eyes
by John Carver
Thousands of persons who have learned Policy Governance are amused or dismayed by news stories that cover the actions of boards in all their varieties, whether they are called boards, councils, or commissions and whether they operate in the political, business, or nonprofit arena. In this article, John Carver reflects on a number of such news stories, though he has altered the locations, names, and other identifying data as an act of charity.

Why does the word monitoring have such a strictive definition in policy Governance literature?
by John Carver
Long Before policy Governance, boards were monitoring staff performance, so receiving reports and taking them seriously is nothing new. So I am confused by the overly restrictive use of the word monitoring in Policy Governance literature. Why must it be so rigidly defined?

Number 83, January/ February 2006
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What Can You Trust?
by Caroline Oliver

How Much Policy Governance Is Required for It to Be Policy Governance?
by John Carver
Board Leadership is pleased to reproduce here a very slightly modified excerpt from the brand-new third edition of John Carver's Boards That Make a Difference: A New Design for Leadership in Nonprofit and Public Organizations (Jossey-Bass, 2006). The excerpt from Chapter 12, titled “But Does It Work?” appears between a response to various model criticisms and a discussion of research on governance effectiveness.

Why not delegate the evaluation of the executive director (our CEO) to the Human Resource Committee?
by John Carver

Number 84, March/April 2006
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Executive Limitations Policies: Two Errors to Avoid
by John Carver

Governance as Leadership?
by Caroline Oliver
Caroline Oliver reviews Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work on Nonprofit Boards, by Richard P. Chait, William P. Ryan, and Barbara E. Taylor (Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2005).

What authority does a board committee have over the staff member assigned for its support?
by John Carver

Should senior staff be present at board meetings?
by John Carver

Number 85, May/June 2006
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The Red Herring of Board Involvement
by John Carver
Governance effectiveness research cannot proceed until it is clear what governance effectiveness is.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

Enriching the Dimensions of Board Decision Making
by Jannice Moore
Is your board getting maximum value from Policy Governance or just going though the motions?

Boardroom Sins to Avoid
by John Carver

Why Nonprofit Boards Should Not Learn Accountability from Corporate Boards
by John Carver
The difference between corporate management and corporate governance.

Number 86, July/August 2006
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Prescribing Favored Means by Proscribing all Others
by John Carver
Means prescriptions in sheep's clothing.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

International Aid Agencies and the UN's Millennium Development Goals
by Caroline Oliver
There is perhaps no more vital sphere in which to examine what Policy Governance has to offer than in tackling the needs of the world's poorest people. Taking her courage in both hands, Caroline Oliver sets out on an exploration in which she hopes others will engage.

The United National Millennium Development Goals
by John Carver

Number 87, September/ October 2006
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How Good People Can Inadvertently Abuse the Board's Trusteeship
by John Carver
Noble intentions do not necessarily translate into good governance.

On A Personal Note
by John and Miriam Carver

Who's the "Authoritative Source" on Policy Governance?
by John Carver
A theory can survive only by the force of its own logic.

FAQ
by John Carver

Seven Things a Board Chair Should Never Do
by John Carver
This article addresses what board chairs should not do. It was inspired by an inquiry received several years ago by a new chair who wanted to be very sure what to avoid. Although pronouncements had always been focused on the Policy Governance prescriptions for what a board chair should do, it seemed a reasonable question deserving an answer.

Number 88, November/ December 2006
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Sharpening the Global Ends Policy
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
Over the course of the thirty years since the creation of the Policy Governance model, two kinds of evolution have occurred. First, the theory was made increasingly coherent; most changes of this fundamental sort happened during the first few years. Second, practices within the model - its concrete, procedural use - have been continually adjusted toward greater fidelity to the theory. Changes of this sort continue to happen even now. They include greater care in policy format, much more transparency in monitoring reports, and - as John and Miriam Carver point out in this article - better representation of efficiency in construction of the global ends policy.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Importance of Operational Definitions
by John Carver
The evolution of performance monitoring in Policy Governance has increasingly brought practice into closer alignment with the theory. The theoretical elements are (1) that a delegatee (for management, normally a CEO, which is assumed for the sake of this article) has the right to use any reasonable interpretation of the board's language, (2) that the board is obligated to assess the degree to which performance fulfills the delegation, and (3) that the assessment comprises the delegatee's evaluation. But theoretical elements do not automatically translate into procedures. In this article, John Carver explains how the concept of "operational definitions" can help build the bridge between theory and practice.

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
by John Carver
Thousands of persons who have learned Policy Governance are amused - or dismayed - by news stories that cover the actions of boards in all their varieties, whether they are called boards, councils, or commissions, and whether they operate in the political, business, or nonprofit arena. In this article - the second in this intermittent series - John Carver reflects on a number of such news stories, though he may alter the locations, names, and other details to preserve anonymity.

Number 89, January/ February 2007
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Using Policy Governance® to Manage Risk Effectively
by Jannice Moore
A system for balancing management empowerment with the need to retain control.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

Beyond Board Self-Evaluation
by John Carver
It is generally accepted that board self-evaluation is is a good thing. Boards that regularly evaluate themselves are sen not only as more conscientious but also as more effective, even in the absence of other signs of effectiveness. In this article, John Carver's intent is not to derogate boards' frequently taking stock of their own performance but rather to shape the conversation about self-inspection.

Number 90, March/April 2007
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Now Draw This!
by Miriam Carver
Abstract: Policy Governance is a model based on a set of principles that must be well understood to be used profitably. This is why we spend a good amount of time exploring those principles with our clients before attempting to help them apply the model. We have found that a lot of time can be wasted in the policy development and implementation phases of a board's work when basic principles are not well understood. This is hardly a surprising discovery; it is difficult to implement principles one does not understand.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

The Board and the Internal Auditor
by John Carver and Miriam Carver
Not all organizations have internal auditors. Those that do can be beset by an uneasy and ambiguous interaction among the internal auditor, the CEO, and the board. This article does not debate the advisability of having an internal auditor by rather discusses the type of link that a board might establish with the internal auditor while preserving the integrity of the CEO role.

FAQ
by John Carver

Lessons from Hewlett-Packard
by Jim Hyatt
Sir Adrian Cadbury has said, "Chairs have a major leadership task. It is they who are responsible for turning a collection of competent individuals into an effective team." As Jim Hyatt points out in this article, the chair's leadership task is exactly that, but only when considered within the context of the board as initial authority.

Number 91, May/June 2007
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Defining Purpose: Outputs, Not Activities
by Miriam Carver
For anyone familiar with the Policy Governance model, it is not news that the model requires boards to focus keenly on organizational results, as well as their recipients and worth (ends), rather than on organizational activities and processes (means). One of the major contributions made by Policy governance is the clarity of the ends concept and the unblinking assertion that organizations exist for their ends, not their means. The organization's purpose, then, lies not in its activities, however remarkable they may be, but in its ends, for to define purpose as anything less than the accomplishment of results is to cheapen the concept of purpose.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Ups and Downs of Hierarchy
by Susan Mogensen
Morally, hierarchy is neither good not bad.

Policy Governance as an Enabler of Wisdom
by Jannice Moore
A system that helps boards replace "busy work" with the creation of unique value.

Number 92, July/August 2007
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Ethics and Prudence Standards vs. Management Consulting
by John Carver
Certain normal board behaviors, while seemingly innocuous, are actually quite damaging to effective governance. One of these well-intended behaviors is acting as a management consultant to staff. Though it seems counterintuitive, "helpful" assistance or direction from the board interferes with both expansive empowerment and robust accountability.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Emergence of Policy Governance
by Caroline Oliver
It is now seventeen years since Boards That Make a Difference was first published, exposing the principles and practice of Policy Governance to the nonprofit and public worlds. Since that time, Policy Governance has established a solid footing on a number of boards, but nothing like the number that might be expected, given the lack of real alternatives.

Revisiting Values in Policy Governance
by John Carver
In recent years, it has become popular for boards to adopt a formal list of their values, along with statements of mission and vision. Although the intent behind these actions is admirable, the impulse indicates an unsophisticated style of governance, a style in which board documents reflect old governance technology rather than new.

Number 93, September/ October 2007
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Accountability isn't Blame; It's a System Characteristic
by John Carver
The concept of accountability is as central to the Policy Governance model as it is to good management systems. The increased attention given to accountability in the popular press is very appropriate, but ironically, its buzzword status may have resulted in a distraction from its most important role in organization.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

FAQ
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Policy Governance Sample Policies
by John Carver
Don't mistake the application for the theory.

Number 94, November/ December 2007
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Boardroom Conversation: Total or Incremental Policy Governance Language
by John Carver
Nanci Erkert, a Policy Governance Academy-trained consultant, recently shared an insightful analogy with John and Miriam Carver. It concerned the issue many boards confront when they are new to Policy Governance: Shall we discipline our conversation with Policy Governance concepts and principles even though it is difficult and, due to unfamiliarity, awkward and slow? Or shall we use whatever language comes naturally and let our usage grow more comfortably Policy Governance in nature over time? As Erkert observed, the processes by which people acquire a foreign language provide a useful way to approach this question.

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

FAQ
by John Carver and Miriam Carver

Say What?
by John Carver
Cautionary examples in governance thinking.

FAQ
by John Carver

When the Board Asks a Committee to Develop Its Initial Policies
by John Carver
Creating a new Policy Governance board's initial policies is not a mere drafting errand.

Number 95, January/ February 2008
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Does Policy Governance Expect too Much?
by John Carver
A participant in the fall 2007 Policy Governance Academy clearly phrased a criticism of Policy Governance that John and Miriam had frequently heard, though not always so pointedly put. Quite apart from demonstrating conceptual elegance or logic of design, the man said, is it possible that Policy Governance requires such persistent discipline and consistent actions that it requires human board members to be, in effect, superhuman?

On A Personal Note
by Miriam Carver

Connecting Theories of What Matters
by Brian L. Carpenter
80/20, the vital few, least effort, and Policy Governance

Governing a Faith-Based Organization: Addressing Unique Challenges in the Board Room
by Robert Jordan
Some faith-based organizations (FBOs) are small in terms of their budgets and operations, while others represent large corporate structures and complex financial strategies. And like many nonprofits, FBOs compete for funding sources. This, of course, creates the need for ethical stewardship of monies received. But in addition, FBOs today face some unique challenges that other nonprofits may not. It is these challenges that many FBO governing boards face in their attempts to adequately address problems of the day in the context of responding based on faith or religion. Although Policy Governance was not created for FBOs or any other specific type of organization, it does provide a rational framework that allows FBOs to address their specific issues.


Number 96, March/April 2008
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Demonstrating CEO Performance in Small Organizations
by Miriam Carver
It has always been a principle of Policy Governance that the CEO has the authority to make and carry out any reasonable interpretation of board policies with respect to ends and executive limitations. It has also been a principle that the board is obligated to ascertain that organizational performance is in fact consistent with a reasonable interpretation of those policies. In recent years, as an advanced practice in the service of those principles, John and Miriam Carver have been teaching that the interpretations made by the CEO should be explicit and justified in a way that enables the board to make an informed judgment in fulfillment of that obligation.

On A Personal Note
by John Carver

The Keys to Critiquing Policy Governance
by Susan Mogensen
A practical guide for poking holes in the theory.

Boards and the Bottom Line
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance ensures that boards are relevant.

FAQ
by John Carver


Number 96, March/April 2008
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Demonstrating CEO Performance in Small Organizations
by Miriam Carver
It has always been a principle of Policy Governance that the CEO has the authority to make and carry out any reasonable interpretation of board policies with respect to ends and executive limitations. It has also been a principle that the board is obligated to ascertain that organizational performance is in fact consistent with a reasonable interpretation of those policies. In recent years, as an advanced practice in the service of those principles, John and Miriam Carver have been teaching that the interpretations made by the CEO should be explicit and justified in a way that enables the board to make an informed judgment in fulfillment of that obligation.

On a Personal Note: The Real World of Governance Theory
by John Carver

The Keys to Critiquing Policy Governance
by Susan Mogensen
A practical guide for poking holes in the theory.

Boards and the Bottom Line
by Caroline Oliver
Policy Governance ensures that boards are relevant.

FAQ: Why can’t our board use a standard form for evaluation?
by John Carver


Number 97, May/June 2008
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Board Accountability for Organizational Success
by John Carver
Even the best monitoring is not a board job output.

On a Personal Note: Some Thoughts on Policy Governance Writings
by John Carver

Not-So-Musical Chairs
by John Carver
The pesky persistence of chairperson role confusion.

Tilting at Windmills
by John Carver
Where’s the informed criticism of Policy Governance?


Number 98, July/August 2008
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Hierarchy: Necessary but Not Necessarily Evil
by Susan Mogensen
With the laudable goal of minimizing the conflicts and irresponsible use of power that often flow from hierarchical structures, it is possible to have a “nonhierarchical governance structure” that remains effective and accountable and not simply ineffective for the sake of being “nonhierarchical”? This question was addressed in Part One of this series (Issue 96 of Board Leadership), and it was determined that hierarchy is integral to any conversation about governance. Having concluded that it is impossible to completely avoid hierarchy, this second and final installment considers in more detail how common problems attributed to hierarchy are resolved by Policy Governance.

On a Personal Note: On Public Service Announcements and the Means Trap
by John Carver

Overcoming a Challenge in Using a New Technology
by Eric Craymer and Susan Stratton
Was this a dream—the nightmare kind? A Policy Governance board was in the middle of a meeting when a question that surely sounded like operational means came from a newer board member: “What programs should the CEO develop?” It might have been inexperience that caused the inquiry, but no one raised an objection. What had gone wrong? The members of this board had been doing everything right. They chose Policy Governance after a full consideration of available options. They participated in the introductory course of training and developed a model-consistent policy manual in the blitz session. They sought out additional support for their first year of implementation. Every year, they conduct orientation for new board members and hold a policy development session that includes synthesizing what they have learned over the year from their education and ownership linkage. Practically every year, they make an adjustment to their ends policies based on what they have learned. How could they be making sych an elemental mistake regarding boundaries. The question drives Eric Craymer and Susan Stratton to seek a better understanding.


Number 99, September/October 2008
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Sacrificing Good Intentions to Antiquated Technology
By John Carver
The road to tomorrow’s corporate governance can’t be paved with yesterday’s concepts.

On a Personal Note: New Developments in Policy Governance
By John and Miriam Carver

What Makes a Good Board Great?
By Jannice Moore
How disciplined people can take disciplined action.

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver
John Carver examines current events.

FAQ: I know we’re supposed to speak with one voice as a board, but how do we prevent board members from saying they didn’t vote for a decision the board ended up making?
By Miriam Carver


Number 100, November/December 2008
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Salute to the Board Leadership Centenary
by Sir Adrian Cadbury
If there is one person responsible for the worldwide attention to corporate governance and the international flurry of corporate governance codes near the end of the twentieth century, it is Sir Adrian Cadbury. Sir Adrian chaired the Committee on Financial Aspects of Corporate Governance that produced in 1990 the groundbreaking “Cadbury Report” on the governance of U.K. companies. Over the ensuing years, such codes grew like wildfire in country after country, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 in the United States. Sir Adrian has written The Company Chairman, Corporate Governance and Chairmanship and numerous articles. He has been a director of the Bank of England, chairman of Cadbury-Schweppes, chancellor of Aston University, and an honorary fellow of King’s College, Cambridge.

On a Personal Note: The Big Issue!
By Miriam Carver

Board Leadership: A Biography
By John Carver
Over sixteen years of governance insight.

This Just In: World Initiative for Human Progress
By Caroline Oliver
Looking toward the future of Policy Governance.

The Birth of Policy Governance
By John Carver
From Harris County, Texas, to the world stage.


Number 101, January/February 2009
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A U.K. Policy Governance Odyssey
by Stuart Emslie

On a Personal Note: Worldwide Policy Governance
By Miriam Carver

A Universal Model
By Jan Maas

Policy Governance in New Zealand
By Sandy Brinsdon

How to Eat an Elephant: Linking with Owners
By Jannice Moore


Number 102, March/April 2009
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A Childless Citizen's Appeal to the Board of Education
by John Carver

On a Personal Note: The New Carver Policy Governance Guides
By Miriam Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver

Meeting Audit Standards with Thorough Policy Governance Implementation
By R.M. Biery and Gregg Capin

FAQ: Why do boards and city councils ignore the task forces they've appointed to provide input?
By John Carver


Number 103, May/June 2009
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Executive Compensation: Cherchez la Board
by John Carver

On a Personal Note: Repair the Infrastructure? What an Idea!
By Miriam Carver

Danger: Health Care Targets at Work
By Caroline Oliver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver

FAQ: Q: What's wrong with the board chair, between meetings, speaking for the board if the CEO requires reassurance that he or she is meeting the terms of board policies?
By John Carver


Number 104, July/August 2009
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Is Student Achievement the Test of School Board Governance?
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: CEO-centrism Marches On
By John Carver

What's Different About Policy Governance Policies
By John Carver

FAQ: Why is it wrong to say that the board makes ends decisions and the staff means decisions?
By John Carver

FAQ: In Policy Governance writings and presentations, it is frequently said that the CEO should not be a voting board member. So why isn't that included as a Policy Governance principle?
By John Carver

The Familiar Scene of a Board Asking for Public Input - About the Wrong Things
By Miriam Carver


Number 105, Sept/Oct 2009
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My Last ExxonMobil Annual Meeting
By Robert. A. G. Monks

On a Personal Note: Corporate Governance and Resistance to Theory
By John Carver

How Business Week Got It Wrong
By John Carver

FAQ: Does Policy Governance allow a board to refuse to answer questions posed in a public meeting?
By Miriam Carver

If God Is in the Details, Shouldn't the Board Be There Too?
By John Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
By John Carver


Number 106, Nov/Dec 2009
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Ends Policies: A Review of Theory and Practice
By Miriam Carver

On a Personal Note: The "Ends Issue"
By John Carver

Untangling Strategic Planning and Ends: Challenging Conventional Wisdom
By Jannice Moore

Differentiating Ends from Outputs or Results
By John Carver


Number 107, Jan/Feb 2010
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Critique of an Ostensible Ends Policy
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: On the Need for Model Integrity
By John Carver

Crisis Governance
By Caroline Oliver

FAQ: Should Monitoring Reports Be Made Available to Owners?
By Miriam Carver

If I Read One More Article on Board Governance
By Richard M. Biery


Number 108, Mar/April 2010
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Board Control Over Earnings Management
By John Carver

On a Personal Note: How Does a Board Decide Which Matters It Should Decide?
By John Carver

Board Recruitment: By Design or by Default?
By Jannice Moore

Taking a Whole System Approach to Adopting Policy Governance
By Susan Radwan


Number 109, May/June 2010
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The Concept of Worth
By Jim Hyatt

On a Personal Note: Keeping Board Leadership Free of Politics and Faith
By John Carver

Clarity
By Caroline Oliver

FAQ: Is it legitimate for our board to influence the CEO's choice of executives?
By John Carver

FAQ: What should we do when a question about incidental information is raised during review of a monitoring report?
By John Carver


Number 110, July/August 2010
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Board Servant Leadership from Intention to Performance
John Carver

On a Personal Note: Oil and Water Don't Mix
John Carver

FAQ: What is a Policy, exactly?
John Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
John Carver

FAQ: How can we banish our dominating CEO?
Miriam Carver


Number 110, July/August 2010
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Board Servant Leadership from Intention to Performance
John Carver

On a Personal Note: Oil and Water Don't Mix
John Carver

FAQ: What is a Policy, exactly?
John Carver

News Reports Through Policy Governance Eyes
John Carver

FAQ: How can we banish our dominating CEO?
Miriam Carver


Number 111, September/October 2010
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Revisiting the Case for Governing by Values
John Carver

On a Personal Note: How Policy Governance Works with Other Governance Methodologies
John Carver

Parroting John Carver vs. Preserving and Presenting the Logic
Miriam Carver

FAQ: Why Is It So Important to Put Board Decisions into the Policy Manual?
John Carver and Miriam Carver

What Color Is Your Board Agenda? Using Your Agenda as a Future-Focusing Tool
Jannice Moore


Number 112, November/December 2010
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Keeping Policy Governance Alive
John Carver

On a Personal Note: Ocean Howell Moves On
John and Miriam Carver

A “Heads-up” Letter to Owners
John Carver

Ends Are Results, Not Routes
John Carver

FAQ: Why is specialized training necessary for Policy Governance consultants?
John Carver


Number 113, January/February 2011
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Board Impact on Student Success
Robert D. Summers

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