3 Resolutions for Improved Board Communication in the New Year
It's that time of year again, the first of the year when many of us resolve to do better and meet new goals in the months ahead. Exercise more regularly. Read a book a month. Visit a new city. You know the drill.
However, these resolutions need not end with the personal realm. It's also helpful to take stock of your professional life as well and set some goals for the year ahead.
In a recent thought-provoking article in the DailyFinance entitled "Top 10 Challenges for CEOs in 2011" several important issues that face boards were mentioned, which got us thinking. In uncertain economic times what are three resolutions that every management team can get behind to improve their board communication in the year ahead? Even if business results are not guaranteed, these strategies are sure to earn points with your board of directors.
No one likes surprises in business, least of all your board. Regular board communication of necessity dispels suspicion and uncertainty. The more informed the board is about your business operations, the better it can perform its advisory role. Make sure board packages are sent several days in advance so that each board member can thoughtfully prepare to address issues of strategic direction and any challenges facing the organization. In between board meetings, make sure that assigned tasks are accomplished, and if they cannot be met, make sure to report on the status so that an informed discussion can take place at the next board meeting.
One way to accomplish this is with an online board room software solution, such as SmartBoard, for transmitting corporate updates and board packages as well as staying informed about upcoming events and meetings. It's a simple and convenient way to make sure your board has all the resources it needs at its fingertips.
Every board is concerned about the risks facing their company. Whether vulnerability lies with operational disorganization or the absence of a disaster recovery plan to name a few, every business faces susceptibility. Taking a good hard look at the ways in which your company is unprepared is an important first step in resolving the problems. Many CEOs don't realize that 70% of companies which experience a major disaster, such as flood, theft, or data loss, never recover and end up going out of business. The statistics are staggering.
There are many online solutions to improve corporate standardization and security. Just one example of business document management software is Radar from DocDep, an out-of-the-box, web-based application that can immediately start you down the path to reduced risk so everyone can breath a sigh of relief.
The regulations that face companies are changing and increasing all the time. Recent legislation, such as healthcare reform and the financial-regulation bill, has far-reaching implications that affect even small businesses. Gone are the days when federal directives only affected public companies, and you can be certain that your board is concerned with making sure your company meets all guidelines.
The answer is transparency and this starts from within the enterprise itself. When critical data is organized and accessible to all parties with a fiduciary interest in the company, it is easier by extension to fulfill outside regulatory demands and avoid punitive implications. Open board communication is the key.
Do you have any other resolutions for improving board communication in 2011?