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Board succession planning

Directors are temporary custodians of the association they serve. Part of their responsibility is to ensure the existence of a succession plan to enable continued good governance.

Associations Forum’s Denys Correll provides some tips to help you with your succession planning.

  1. The nomination and election of directors is a responsibility of members. However, the Board can assist members by ensuring there is a pool of the best possible candidates from which to choose.

  2. A successful Board is dependent upon the expertise and experience of individual directors.

  3. Diversity needs to be considered in terms of gender, age, skills and culture.

  4. In preparing for elections the Board can assist the process by examining the association’s strategic plan and undertaking a skills analysis to identify the types of candidates who will assist the association achieve its plan.

  5. Ideally, there should be a Nominations Committee, as a sub-committee of the Board, which assists the Board in identifying and recruiting potential candidates for election or for appointed positions or for filling casual vacancies.

  6. The Board should notify members of the skill mix needed by future directors so that members can consider these when nominating and voting to fill Board positions.

  7. As part of the nomination process, nominees should complete a nomination form that gives each candidate an equal opportunity to identify their skills in relation to the strategic plan.

  8. Interviewing candidates is another step in determining the best possible potential Board members. Questions could cover skills, potential conflicts of interest, qualifications, and availability to contribute the requisite amount of time to the association.

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This article appears in ASSOCIATIONS Magazine Edition 56 October 2019.