The work completed by SCI  in the governance zone spans a multitude of practice areas from training, to coaching, to Board and peer assessments. We believe that the true DIFFERENTIATOR of a strong governance Board is their belief in using assessments as a tool to learn and grow.

Norfolk Mutual Insurance Company, Simcoe, Ontario, recently engaged Sandi Verrecchia from Satori Consulting to work with our Board to do our first Peer Review. Many of the members were skeptical but Sandi was very professional and worked closely with the Executive to ensure we got a proper assessment of each members strengths and weaknesses. The one-on-one review was enlightening for most members. Sandi was tough but fair and all members felt they grew as Board members for going through the experience. We would certainly recommend Sandi and Satori Consulting for assisting in your Board and Peer Evaluations.
David McBride, Board Director, Norfolk Mutual Insurance Company

Board Evaluations – Creating and Supporting a High Performing Board

A high performing Board has the right blend of directors, who work as a team and provide the knowledge, skills, and viewpoints that support the company’s strategic goals and risk tolerance. A high performing, in tune Board, is a true strategic asset.

A high performing Board has the following attributes:

  • Has the right people with the right skill sets
  • Makes the best use of their time together
  • Makes informed decisions based on the right information
  • Has highly effective processes
  • Has effective committees
  • Has an effective Chair
  • Works well together as a team
  • Engages in productive conflict and never ‘rubber stamps’
  • Works productively with the CEO

Board evaluations and assessments are a best practice in governance. Board assessments and evaluations are tools that are used to ensure that the Board is working together effectively, and is truly operating as a governance Board.

Open-minded and forward thinking Boards view Board evaluations as an integral tool in the Board governance toolkit.  A toolkit that, if administered well, can open lines of communication, build stronger teams and attract skilled and highly competent future Board members.

Board Evaluations – Feedback is Important but Often Feared

Giving constructive feedback can be difficult and is often avoided in business, and in the boardroom. It is avoided for many reasons, but one big reason is that people tend to believe that being critical of someone else can erode relationships. However, the opposite is actually more accurate. Not giving constructive feedback can and will be detrimental to relationships, and to overall Board effectiveness, over time. The reality is that well-intentioned feedback can be the impetus for positive change and will weave a solid foundation of trust and communication.

Board Evaluation – Methods

Through Board evaluation, we may endeavor to assess the Board as a whole, the role of the Chair, Committee structure, and effectiveness, or individual contribution (self or peer). There are many ways in which Satori will engage to assess a Board. Depending on the specifics and required outcomes, we use a variety of the methods to extract information:

  • Online surveys
  • Interviews
  • Observations
  • Cultural reviews
  • Facilitated conversations

Our methods may change, but our commitment to integrity and confidentiality is paramount to the success of all our programs.

Peer Evaluations

Our approach to peer evaluations is simple. They are confidential, using a coaching-centric approach that focuses on improving individual directors and the Board as a whole.

The confidential process allows fellow directors to provide their perspective on how each director contributes to the Board’s success, the strengths and areas of weakness of both the Board and of each individual director.  The Satori process strengthens a Boards performance through coaching, action plans, and accountability.

The Directors College              Certified Professional Coactive Coach

Board Succession and Skills Matrix

Most Boards recognize the importance of CEO succession planning. They spend a great deal of time and rigor creating processes that secure and nurture top talent for that inevitable day when the CEO spot becomes available. However, in contrast, most Boards spend little, if any, time planning their own succession and assessing the composition of the Board today and its needs in the future.

Board stability is important, however, through retirement, sudden exits or active bi-laws, changes to a Board’s make-up are inevitable. Good governance would suggest that Boards take an active stance on board succession. Keeping a Board competency matrix up to date will help support the competencies, skills, and experiences required at any given time and provide a framework for Board recruitment.

About Satori Consulting inc.

Satori Consulting inc. is a leading Canadian owned management consulting and leadership development firm, based in Burlington Ontario. Being based in Burlington Ontario supports our geographically close service areas of Hamilton, Oakville, Mississauga, Cambridge, Waterloo, Toronto and the GTA, but we are also national and global in scope providing management consulting services from coast to coast within Canada and the US.

We bring a unique, cross-disciplinary approach to clients’ challenges, ensuring the right balance of expertise, real world experience and best practices across business strategy, governance, organizational performance and executive & talent development.

Providing expertise in credit union consulting, insurance industry knowledge, academia (coaching and teaching), general business management solutions, family business solutions, leadership development and team building – Satori Consulting inc. is passionate about management consulting and partnering with clients that want change.