This Friday, December 6, the Board of Directors will spend half of its meeting in a workshop format on “Good Governance”. Led by Heather Kimmel, General Counsel and Secretary of the Corporation from the national staff of the United Church of Christ, we will look at two primary components of being an effective and productive Board of Directors. First, what are the responsibilities that a board must oversee and make happen in relationship to the Vision, Mission and Structure of an organization? Two, what are the general responsibilities that a board member, individually, should follow?
Like most organizations, the simple demands of everyday business before the BOD at any meeting is tough to fit into a five-hour time frame. How to make it all “fit” will be an exercise in prioritizing which items need face-to-face interaction. Even with the supplemental use of modern on-line meetings and the convenience of internet communications, there is nothing quite as valuable as face-to-face time. But isn’t that the point? How we use our time and what we use our time for is critical.
Good Governance demands that we must be focused on what is essential to the vision and mission of the Heartland Conference. While my own testimony would confirm that there is little that we do at our meetings that doesn’t have real world implications for the life of the Conference, in a similar vein, how do we know for sure without a clear understanding, a check list, to guide us?
As we continue the journey before us as the Heartland Conference, having a quality check list to guide us regarding our missional priorities is going to provide valuable help in how best to use the time, talent and resources represented around the table of decision making. Please hold your Board of Directors in your prayers and thoughts as we engage in what is sure to be an informative, and perhaps even provocative, exercise in “Good Governance” and its implications for the way we, as a Conference, carry out our responsibilities both corporately and individually.
I look forward to reporting out what insights we will gain from our efforts this Friday as well as looking to celebrate, as all of you, the season of Holy Days that are upon us. May all our efforts in every corner of the church, bring the delight of new birth and meaning to the time we all share together in the Heartland Conference.
– Rev. David Plant