Evaluation of supervisors
In recent years, Hoek Consultants has become a strategic partner for Boards of Trustees, Boards of Commissioners and Directors. This challenging supervisory task zooms in on the importance of having a team-oriented attitude, and of identifying and tending to (small) risks. Organisations, as well as interest organisations, greatly value professional supervisors who provide the necessary education and social accountability, and in addition know how to evaluate. This evaluation focuses on some key issues.
This concerns practically and efficiently monitoring the management. To what extent does it adequately monitor the most crucial aspects, and what are its strengths and weaknesses?
Significant focal points involve supervising:
- Course and strategic direction of the organisation
- Social added value and effectiveness
- Social responsibility
- Financial performance
- Organisational development and potential reorganisation
- Quality policies
- Social policies and employment conditions
- Operational management
- Quality of directors and management
The Board of Trustees should in this respect be in the possession of all the necessary background information, and obtain additional information by calling upon individuals or entities.
If the latter, the following options are possible:
- The management of the organisation
- Middle management
- Works or Client Councils
- Internal or external auditors
- External experts
It is also important for the Board of Supervisors to have the means to effectively intervene when the need arises.
The way in which the management functions takes centre stage here. Does the Board of Supervisors evaluate this and does she use appropriate tools in this? Does she frequently find a dialogue with the specific directors in order to remain sufficiently informed about the way in which specific persons function? Detecting malfunction in a timely manner prevents issues cropping up at a later stage. Recruitment and selection of potential candidates is also one of the Board’s responsibilities.
What is of particular importance here is the frequency of which the Supervisory Board advises the management team, whether it’s desired or not. Also, it is of paramount importance to analyse in which cases such advice is desired or not. Also the way in which it is done, formally or informally, written or oral, determines the effectiveness and transparency of the advisory role.
What is crucial in this case are the agreements that the Supervisory Board has made about its own approach, methodology and accountability, also to what extent this Board has an eye for potential improvement. Apart from practical issues such as year planning, time schedules and agenda setting, it is also significant to pay attention to the relationship between the president and the board, as well as to the way in which the various members of the Supervisory Board communicate with one another.
Frequent evaluation and assessment play a central role here, as well as a thorough search for improvements. This can be done through the aid of self-evaluations, professional methods of evaluation, evaluation under supervision of experts, or internal discussions on individual qualities and commitment. Required training of individual members can be of great value in order to increase the quality. Reviews of the organisation’s board and a regularly updated profile are also possibilities to ensure quality.