IMO Masterclass for Supervisory Board Members (and those who would like to become one),
Holambra, Brazil, November 2017
Today we started a new IMO Masterclass for Supervisory Board Members. We worked on three attitudes of a board member: 1) When to take charge, 2) When to partner, 3) When staying out of the way.
When to take charge
The main task of a board is to select the right CEO, or, in cases where there are two or three leaders, the leadership team. The board should also be very familiar and clear about the purpose, the culture and the strategy of the organization. It should understand the central idea of the activity, the business model, and its soul. Then it should develop a good modus operandi. Who will be the chairman of the board? Which delegations or committees do we need? For instance a CEO-selection-preparations committee. How many members should a board have? I would advise a maximum of 5 members. And how can a board meeting be a refreshing and supporting event for the leadership team?
This is the task mainly of the chairman of the board in good cooperation with the CEO, or leadership team. The chairman should stand aside the CEO whenever necessary to support strategy, investments, capital allocation, and achieving results. Also: talent development, and realization of culture and behavior, and how to act and be consequent in cases of misconduct.
For many in our group here in Holambra this attitude seems to be particularly difficult. How can we stay out of the way, but not loose contact? How can we be passive, but at the same time inside very active and interested? How can we develop this warm and strong interest in anything the CEO, or leadership team does, making them feel our true support? How can we stay out of the way when the leadership team is in charge of execution and operations?This new masterclass for supervisory board members is a very nice start of an important task for the economy and community: to train future members of boards for small and medium-sized companies, in order to support them in sustaining their longterm mission and values.