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Governing Style

Policy Type: Governance Process
Policy Title: Governing Style

The Board will govern in a manner that emphasizes outward vision rather than an internal preoccupation, encouragement of diversity in viewpoints, strategic leadership more than administrative detail, clear distinction of Board and Presidential roles, collective rather than individual decisions, future rather than past or present, and proactively rather than reactively.

More specifically, the Board will:

1. Operate in all ways mindful of its trusteeship obligation to the public. It will allow no officer, individual trustee or committee of the Board to prevent its fulfilling this commitment.

2. Enforce upon itself whatever discipline is needed to govern with excellence. Discipline will apply to matters such as attendance, policy making principles, respect of roles, speaking with one voice, and ensuring the continuity of governance capability. Continual development will include orientation of new members in the Board’s governance process and periodic Board discussion of process improvement.

3. Direct, control and inspire the College through the careful establishment of the broadest organizational policies reflecting the Board’s values and perspectives. The Board’s major focus will be on the intended long term impacts outside the operating organization (Ends), not on the administrative or programmatic means of attaining those effects (Means).

4. Cultivate a sense of group responsibility. The Board, not the staff, is responsible for excellence in governing. The Board will be an initiator of policy, not merely a reactor to staff initiatives. The Board will use the expertise of individual trustees to enhance the work of the Board as a body, rather than to substitute their individual judgments for those of the Board as a whole.

5. Monitor and discuss the Board’s process and performance regularly. Self-monitoring will include comparison of Board activity and discipline to policies in the governance process and Board-staff relationship categories.

6. Seek input from various sources including the President, faculty and staff, students, alumni, employers, and other community members as related to Board policies on Ends.