Board Evaluation

Leading the way on board evaluation.

Board Evaluation

We don’t do board reviews to give you a score or a pass/fail grade.  Our goal is to help the board keep learning about how it can work more effectively, efficiently and enjoyably.

We bring practical suggestions drawn from hundreds of reviews and our thought leadership – and by striving to understand your organisation.

Our Advisors are among the highest-regarded board specialists in the UK.

With some 240 board reviews to our name, we bring unparalleled expertise and fresh perspectives.

We bring insights from across many different types of boards.

Many of our reviews are for listed companies – including some 50-odd FTSE 100 companies.  But we often do board evaluations for others: mutuals, subsidiaries, pension trustee boards,  regulatory bodies, universities, family firms, public sector…  And our clients range from enormous to tiny.

We’re often asked how we differ from others.  The answer is in many ways.
But it boils down to…

…our focus on your business and what your Board needs to achieve

…the depth of our expertise and services across committees, risk management, audit

…fresh thinking – as you’ll see from our publications, we’re constantly thinking about what matters.

We offer three types of board evaluation: interview-based, questionnaires with our external facilitation, or self-assessment questionnaires driven by you.

  • Interview

    Our “fullest” approach will give you particularly keen insight – through paper review, in-depth discussions and meeting observation.

    Hover over each step for a short description.

    • Agree Scope

      We meet with you to agree objectives, scope and the interview list. We ask if there are any angles you’d like to make us aware of or any specific areas of focus.

    • Review documents

      We review Board papers to assess the ways information is communicated and to help understand the issues the Board is having to tackle.

    • Interview

      We interview the whole Board – and recommend including executives and advisers who have regular contact with the Board and committees.

    • Observe meetings

      If we can, we like to observe the Board in action to see the style of discussion, how information is used and how directors and management work together.

    • Write report and QA

      We pull together our findings and debate them internally – writing a short report in plain English, with practical suggestions for improvement.

    • Discuss draft report

      We meet with the Chairman so that there is an opportunity for an in-depth discussion, and to make sure our suggestions are clear and the tone and format helpful.

    • Meet with the Board

      We come to a Board meeting to discuss our report – an important part of a rigourous review. We clear up any questions and help you consider next steps.

  • Facilitated Questionnaires

    You use our Thinking Board® questionnaires for an anonymous self-assessment – and we analyse the results and report to your Board.  If you follow each step (hover for details) you can report it as externally-facilitated by us.

    • Agree scope & questionnaire

      Using our question banks, we work with you to make sure the questionnaire fits you, to pin down the depth of any committee evaluation and who to include.

    • Complete questionnaire

      Respondents fill it in online using a secure login. Typically it takes around 30 minutes.

    • Analyse results

      We pull together our observations from the scores, issues “flagged” and comments, using our experience to summarise findings and draw out themes.

    • Draft report

      Our reports are much more than a re-presentation of your data. We set the findings in your context, drawing on what we think matters and see working elsewhere.

    • Discuss draft report

      We meet with the Chairman so there an opportunity for an in-depth discussion, and to make sure our suggestions are clear and the tone and format helpful.

    • Meet with the Board

      We attend a Board meeting to give all the directors an opportunity to ask questions and to help you consider next steps – an important part of a rigorous review.

  • Questionnaires

    You use the Thinking Board® questionnaires for your self-assessment and produce your own report.  We’ll provide training and “help desk” support to help it all go smoothly.  Hover over each step for a short description.

    • Train your administrator

      We have two short sessions with your administrator – one on setup and one on reporting. It’s all very intuitive but we’re here if you get stuck.

    • Finalise questionnaire

      Using our question banks, you can adapt the questionnaire to make sure it fits you, possibly with a deep dive in areas of particular interest.

    • Complete questionnaire

      You will want to send the questionnaire to the Board and probably to managers who have regular contact with it. They fill it in online using a secure login.

    • Analyse results

      You can use the automated results to see scores, issues “flagged” and comments. You can segment the data to get a better understanding.

    • Draft report

      You can export all our charts, graphs and tables to Word. Simply add your own narrative to build out the Board paper.

    • Meet with the Board

      You will want to discuss the report at a Board meeting to agree areas for improvement, action and follow-up.

Our Advisory Team

Helping you get it right

For us, good governance is about good performance.

Yes, compliance matters.  But our work is about helping you make sure your organisation…is led effectively by a board that adds value…is kept under control through risk management and assurance frameworks that meet your needs…and is “doing the right thing”.