5 steps for better board management in 2021 | Aprio
5 steps to better board management in 2021 including how to use board management software
January 13, 2021
Ian Warner

5 steps to better board management in 2021

The challenges faced by organizations and their boards that started in 2020 will continue to be front and center in 2021. Boards need to shift from responding to recovery with COVID-19, increase focus on board diversity and many will continue with digital transformation. 

To put their best foot forward, boards should look inward and consider how to run a more effective and productive board. Here’s 5 ways to focus on better board management this year.

Better board management in 2021 – 5 essential steps:

Step 1: A disciplined and prepared board.

Better board meetings start long before the meeting begins. To be most effective, meetings need to be ordered and timely, outlined by clear agendas. Board members need to come prepared and engaged for maximum productivity – including all background documents read before attendance. Board management software helps maintain board meeting discipline through automated agenda creation, centralized access to all materials and reporting on document access.

Step 2: Improve board diversity. 

2020 has shown a growing need for board diversity and this trend will continue in 2021. Boards should consider:

  • Multiple facets of diversity: gender, age, race and ethnicity
  • Variety of skills and competencies: industry-specific skills, behavioural competencies and specialized knowledge
  • Board rotation: rotating board members between various committees or the board chair role.

Step 3:  Facilitate open discussions.

For boards to operate effectively, open discussions are vital. It leads to less groupthink, more challenging questions and consideration of diverse viewpoints. But while many boards continue to govern remotely, Zoom Fatigue can lead to discussions becoming less collaborative and more siloed. More than ever, boards should ensure everyone gets a chance to speak. Be sure to review your processes for facilitating open discussions and consider tools such as online voting. 

How to run a virtual AGM

Step 4: Go beyond the board meeting.

Much of the business of the board takes place not in board meetings, but between meetings. An idea may not be fully formed to present to the entire board and may need one-on-one input. Or, an idea is simply too important to wait to discuss at the next meeting. This year, consider ways to support board members outside of board meetings, such as using a secure messaging tool.

Step 5: Maximize the efficiency of board management software.

It’s no secret board management software streamlines board communications and increases board meeting efficiency. But depending on the software, the initial setup and training of board portal software can be time consuming and hinder a board’s productivity.

Aprio provides expert advice on how to best use board management software as well as personalized guidance on data set up. We take care of configurations, boardroom creation, and data migration from any existing portal. Initial deep training for administrators and directors and any on-going training is included.

Make board management more effective this year with Aprio.

Aprio’s board management software helps board members, chief executives and board administrators stay organized, make timely decisions, provide and run meetings efficiently – from anywhere. See how Aprio helps streamline board management and keep information secure with a custom demo, or watch an overview video.

Want to learn more about board management best practices? See these related posts:

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