Duty of care. Duty of loyalty. Duty of obedience. These are just three areas which board members should be aware of and understand when they accept a position as a trustee of a higher education institution, and a violation of any of these can result in board members being held personally and legally liable for the actions of the university.
Boards are responsible for university governance, which means five things:
1. Developing and/or approving the strategic plan
2. Setting/approving policy
3. Approving the budget
4. Assessing risk (including institution culture)
5. Hiring and evaluating the University President.
It is not unusual for there to be friction between boards and administration because board members overstep their roles (i.e., micromanaging) or administrations do not communicate, but boards must probe sufficiently to ensure they are fulfilling their duty of care which, if they are not doing appropriately, can result in being held personally and legally liable for the actions of the university.
TCL has worked with and been on multiple boards, and we can help you to gain a better understanding of your roles and responsibilities, how to work better with one another and the leadership team, and get you focused on what is important to drive your institution to sustainability.
It all starts at the top. As a board member, you set the tone for the institution. Are you in harmony, or off key? Take our quick survey below to find out. Or if you’d like to jump in head first, please fill out your email address here for a free 30-minute consultation with The Change Leader.