How to Conduct a Board Self-Assessment

Board Self-Assessment

It is important to look closely at the entire board. There is no one who is responsible for overseeing a board. Board self-assessments are a vital part of board governance practices and aid in ensuring that the board is able to successfully fulfill its leadership roles in turbulent times.

Successful assessments pinpoint strengths in governance and areas in which the board could improve its performance to better fulfill its governance responsibilities. They can provide valuable information which will guide the board’s efforts and attention for the coming year. A board can use an available tool for commercial use or the help of a consultant to conduct its own assessment. The Board Self-Assessment Questionnaire is a good choice for many non-profit organizations. It was created by the Center in 2009 and has been used by hundreds of board members across the US and around the world since then.

If you decide Corporate Communications to conduct your own evaluation, we recommend you start by determining the scope of your evaluation. A majority of boards decide to review the entire board, the board’s leadership, or even individual committees. Clarity about the objective and process of the assessment is essential to ensure getting a positive result.

Once you have established the scope of the evaluation, you should consider choosing an impartial third-party facilitator to oversee the process. A knowledgeable facilitator can help to guide the discussion and ensure that everyone on the board feels comfortable providing honest feedback.

Some boards compare their results to the results of other hospitals or health systems. However, due to the significant differences in structure, size, and scope of authority, many databases do not provide apples-to-apples comparisons.

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