Managing the relationship between a CEO and a Board of Directors

February 10, 2007

Managing the relationship between a board of directors and CEO of a charitable organisation can be challenging at the best of times. In my experience difficulties arise when both parties are clear about their individual roles are but are unclear about the overlap and relationship between their role and that of the other. Common questions I hear are:

How does an agenda get constructed for a board meeting? and who has responsibility for this?
Who is responsible for making sure that the relevant compliance material is lodged with the authorities?
How much say does the board have in the day to day work of the organisation?

I generally try to work with CEOs and board members separately and then together to firstly clarify their role and secondly draw out their understandings and expectations of the other’s. Taking real life examples of dilemmas and challenges is a great way of testing the theory in advance of having to manage a crisis when there’s little time for thinking.
Here’s a brief outline of the primary roles and responsibilities of the Board and CEO which can be used to start those conversations about role, responsibilities and the relationship between.
(You can download a PDF copy Here.)