The HR PRO
The second risky role a board member can play in our Boards Gone Wild webinar series is The HR Pro. Talent recruiting and development is a critical process for school success, but these human resource activities are outside of the domain of the board. A board member may be tempted to inject him or herself into this process, creating a tension between governance and management.
Even if you have a board member who is a certified guru in HR responsibilities, this amazing skill set and experience should only be utilized to shape policies and performance measurements. The chief administrator should be entrusted with the full responsibilities of hiring all other school personnel (full-time, part-time, and even volunteers). For the best results, the Board must intentionally limit itself within the practices of good and effective governance.
Behaviors or statements you might hear from The HR Pro:
> Gives specific direction to the Chief Administrator about a teacher, coach, or staff member, with a comment such as: "This person needs to go!"
> Participates in interviews and selection of new faculty.
> Participates in decisions regarding salaries of school employees.
> Fights for reinstatement of a teacher or coach who has been fired or not renewed. (The Board should never be surprised by the decision to not renew a contract, but ultimately it is the chief administrator's job to make these decisions.)
Roots of the problem with the HR PRO:
* Lack of confidence and trust in the administration.
* Poorly defined policies and practices for accountability and human resources.
* Vague expectations and points of accountability for the administration.
* Personal overconfidence from career experience.
* Lack of understanding of how hiring occurs within schools.
* Personal agenda and relationships that pose a conflict of interest.
How can these issues be addressed?
1. Ensure that your board is committed to being a model of excellence regarding governance and human resources, especially with regard to the board's relationship with the chief administrator.
2. Demonstrate high performance on the board in executing HR policies and practices, specifically regarding selecting and onboarding new board members, professional development, accountability, and board coaching.
3. Affirm the Board's commitment to exercising the best practices in education, including in the area of human resources.
What training can you offer that will improve the capabilities and capacity of your board to lead more effectively?
"Effective Board Leadership to Achieve School Growth" is an online workshop that starts July 7. We will address the best practices of governance and management, providing a solid foundation of professional development for a new board member and a refresher for the more experienced leader. In this four-part workshop board members will learn:
- Session 1: The stages of Board Development
- Session 2: How to Support a Healthy Board Culture
- Session 3: Best Practices of Governance and Management
- Session 4: Board Leadership Strategies (e.g., Strategic & board goals, financial, school calendar)
Click Here to register for Effective Board Leadership online workshop that starts July 7th. A certificate of completion will be provided.