Board Career Development - Evaluating
Updated: May 24
Dear board members,
First of all, I wish you all the best for the new year! Next, I want to introduce the topic of this blog: Evaluation. We all know that you can learn a lot from a board year, but can you do more?
Evaluating your work and the work of others can be of great value in my eyes. When you take time to discuss things that can improved with your board, you can work on these things more specifically and learn from the experiences of others. When doing this, make sure not to forget to note the things that are going very well too.
Last year at Labyrint, me and my board had evaluation meetings. These were quite long meetings (3 to 4 hours) in which the board presented each other with feedback. Not to forget, give themselves feedback as well. This required some preparation, coming up with constructive feedback points for yourself and others. We planned to do four of these meetings throughout the year.
The meetings were structured per person. The person whose turn it was would start by giving feedback on the functioning of the board as a whole, followed by their own feedback on his/her own functioning. The rest of the board will follow one by one by giving their feedback on this person. After the person has received all feedback, there is a little bit of time to ask some follow up questions if anything is unclear and to reflect on the given feedback. After the meeting, we made sure everyone still liked each other and no one felt bad about their feedback.
My personal experiences with these meetings is very positive. I learned a lot from hearing others perspectives on my skills and weaknesses. Most people, including me, have biases on how they perceive themselves. This means you can perceive things differently than others do. Talking about these things can make you aware of new things you can improve, but also the things you are already good at and didn’t see before.
Overall, I would highly suggest to try evaluating with your fellow board members. You obviously don’t have to start with a meeting of four hours, but you can start small. Make it a point on the agenda in a board meeting, and discuss one negative and one positive per person. That can already make a big difference for some!
Don’t hesitate to ask me your questions on evaluation if anything is unclear, or if you’re interested in more information. And, let me know if there are any topics you would like to read about or if you have any specific questions on Board Development!
Lots of Love,