Real Board Solutions - Advising Chief Staff Officers and Board of Directors ||
A Message From Terry


Well, we are nearing the end of January and according to statics, 90+% of New Year's resolutions have been either broken or forgotten by this time. This is unfortunate and as I write this I encourage you to reflect back on yours . . . Perhaps it was to become more assertive with your board or to ask for the board evaluation or personal compensation increase that is well overdue!

For those of you that are hoping that 2013 will bring you everything you deserve, I sincerely wish you only the best. Keep in mind that 'hoping' is not a strategy and that if all of our hopes had been realized we would be on a beach in the Caribbean instead of reading this message.

One of my 2013 strategies was just accomplished in January. Business in Vancouver asked me to be one of their experts in the field on non-profits. My first article is on how to start a non-profit.

If you are serious about your career and need to get on track for 2013, let's schedule a telephone conversation to determine if it makes sense for us to meet. You can reach my colleague Janice or me at 604.737.9992 or toll free 1.888.531.5796.

If you are a board chair searching for a new Executive Director, it's the same phone number or by email Please remember everything is kept in the highest confidence.

Terry Clark

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Feature Article

Chief Staff Officer New Recruitment Update

We are filling our feature article with announcements and congratulations to newly recruited non-profit Chief Staff Officers. The feedback we have received over the past months is that our readers are very interested in these announcements and especially new recruitments.

Daniel Fontaine has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of the BC Care Providers Association. Read the details here.

Nikki Kahnamoui has been appointed Executive Director of Arts Health Network Canada-BC. Read the details here.

Chris Fudge has been appointed the Executive Director of the Saanich Chamber of Commerce. Read the details here.

Keith Sashaw has been appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Consulting Engineers of Canada-British Columbia. Read the details here.

Congratulations to Daniel, Nikki, Chris and Keith!

A new job search for an Executive Director for the British Columbia Institute Purchasing Management Association has begun, read the details here.

If you are in the process of a career search or just thinking about it please remember that not all positions are advertised.

Roberts Review 'Quorum Misconceptions'

A quorum is the number of voting members who must be present for business to be legally transacted. A brief refresher on quorum may be helpful. The quorum requirement for your group can be found in your bylaws. (If they are not in your bylaws and/or your bylaws are not appropriate for today's reality we would be pleased to refer you to a lawyer who can assist you....)

If you are at a meeting with no quorum, you cannot transact business, all you can do is take measures to get a quorum or process one of three motions which are: Fix the time in which to adjourn, adjourn or recess. The requirement for a quorum cannot be waived, even by a unanimous vote.

There are many misconceptions about a quorum. In my experience there is one which seems to arise much more often than the others so let's review it. It's the job of the presiding officer to determine at the beginning of the meeting if there is a quorum. There is a misconception that if board members leave the meeting and the result is that there becomes less than the required quorum, the meeting can continue. That is not correct, it's a misconception. So, it's the presiding officer's role to ensure that there is a quorum and the quorum exits until the meeting is adjourned.

Other questions you may have on meeting management and/or board development will be quickly answered by our knowledgeable staff by going to our website's "Ask the Consultant" section.

Roberts Rules Now in Video
Some of you may prefer to have a quick look at Roberts Rules on video. Have a look at the great job Susan Leahy has done with her videos ... Click Here

If you are interested in finding more about our 'in house' board development seminars you can reach us at 604.737.992 or toll free 1.888.531.5796.

Building a Visionary Board of Directors

One of the most reliable ways the board can strengthen its performance as a governing body is to periodically assess its own performance. The RBS Board Leadership Assessment that follows focuses on competencies and characteristics which, when taken together, helps produce of an effective future focused board. The results of the assessment will be used to develop action plans to strengthen the visionary leadership capacity of your board.

Based on 300+ experiences with successful assessments, we offer the following suggestions for use of the RBS Board Leadership Assessment:

- Give all board members and the Chief Staff Officer an opportunity to discuss the value of a self-assessment and to commit to the process. After discussion, adopt a formal resolution to conduct the assessment and utilize the results to strengthen the board's visionary leadership capacity.

- After adopting the resolution, designate a group to oversee the self-assessment process. The board can delegate this responsibility to the Executive Committee. In either case, the responsible group should be fully committed to the Assessment process.

- Distribute the Assessment to all board members. Specify the date for return of the assessment forms. Compile the results.

- Schedule a special meeting of the board or a retreat session to review the results of the Assessment.

- Conduct the review session. Strive for consensus on 3-5 areas for improvement based on the assessment results. Identify specific plans of action to address the areas targeted for attention. Assign responsibility for implementation and agree on follow-up procedures the board will take to assure accountability.

If you are interested in learning more about this or finding more about our 'in house' board development seminars you can reach us at 604.737.992 or toll free 1.888.531.5796 or

Watch For Our Next E-Book
Our next eBook will be completed In March of this year. It's a 'real world' series of strategies to cut your meeting time 'in half', while increasing your productivity.

Your Assignment

As we start the New Year, poll your board of directors to determine what type of professional development they would like to have over the next few months. Perhaps it's a review of their roles and responsibilities, if they are in British Columbia they may want to know how the proposed new Society Act may affect them. As important would be a quick review of what their directors and officers insurance actually does include (and what it does not!) You would get some surprises on this one . . .

addition If you are one of those 90%+ who have broken or forgotten your 2013 resolutions, spend a few minutes to determine how you might get "back on track" It's really important to 'write them down' and put a date to each. Yes, we have all heard this before but how many of us actually do it and then follow through. I certainly didn't for years however I do, and it is well worth it.

If you would like a goal worksheet template to assist you please email us at

One of my favorite quotes is by George Elliot and is It's never too late to become what you might have been.

About Terry Clark

Terry J. Clark CAE, the Founder and President of Real Board Solutions is a results-oriented, not-for-profit professional who has a unique background and skill set that volunteer board members and their staff truly appreciate.

For the past 19 years Terry has advised hundreds of not-for-profit Boards of Directors and their senior staff members. As past Executive Director with a high profile business association, Terry has also served as an interim Executive Director with eight organizations.

His consulting practice focuses on executive search, Board development, strategic planning, operational reviews, executive director compensation and mentorship/coaching. He has provided those services to not-for-profits in virtually every not-for-profit sector in Western Canada, North West Territories, the Yukon and California. He has recently become 'certified' by Directors and Officers Liability Insurance underwriters so that Associations who have taken his board orientation receive a discount on their D&O insurance annual premiums.

Terry is a Certified Association Executive (CAE), a Past Area Governor of Toastmasters International and was educated at the University of British Columbia. He possesses leading-edge Non Profit "best practices" and combines them with real life experiences to provide not-for-profits Boards and their staff with real solutions.

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