Responsible Leadership: Boards Micro-Manage in Crisis?

Steven Tanner, Editor, California Executive quoted me in an article yesterday. Titled

“Now More Than Ever, Company Boards Must Respect Boundaries”

the article suggests there is a marked increase in Boards making tactical decisions for companies during economic crises. My suggestion, not all quoted in the article of course were as follows:

  • Effective Boards, Board Chairs, and CEO’s should negotiate roles in advance
  • They should also have agreed protocols for calling foul and for raising and resolving conflicts
  • The Board should be generally strategic
  • The Management should be generally tactical
  • For young companies with experienced Boards, the CEO and Chair should establish a trusting partnership for effective collaboration between the Board and Management

But What’s the Supplier’s Responsibility?

I also added as an aside that any supplier who pitches to a prospect without knowing the prospect’s decision-making process has failed to do sufficient discovery work (this went to the hook of the article which was a premium-priced agency crying foul that their prospect’s Board required the prospect to buy on price after they made their proposal to management). I did not realize Tanner would include that in the article! But I’m glad he did.

I learned a long time ago to ask a prospective buyer whether they had the authority to buy should I present a proposal that solves their problem at an attractive price. Call it “Don’t waste my valuable time and energy, and I won’t waste yours.”

What do you think?

Posted in Collaboration, Leadership, Responsibility on 02/11/2009 01:00 pm
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