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Undermining The Chair’s Authority

Attention Board Chairs, want to undermine and subvert your own power and authority? Just do these things:

1. Do your best to convince your board to postpone and avoid every decision that comes their way. Who needs to make a decision anyway, it’s not like we’re “in business”.

2. Have meetings before the meeting with certain board members to “pit” them against each other. This will ensure there’s a healthy level of transparency & trust.

3. When Board members aren’t fulfilling their roles, responsibilities, and expectations, have the CEO contact them and “get them in line”.  Why should you take the time to reach out to the Board members??  It’s not like you should be keeping your finger on their pulse.

4. When Board members quit or resign forbid remaining board members from having any contact with the exiles. And definitely resist the temptation to conduct some type of exit interview – you don’t want to take the chance of gathering some useful information.

5. Remind your CEO that she works for you, not the entire board.

6. Never, ever, under any circumstances, should you have any contact with your CEO outside of the normal Board meeting. There’s enough time 5 minutes before the meeting to get you caught up on any relevant issues.

7. Allow your CEO to develop the agenda for the meeting absent your input, afterall; it’s the CEO’s meeting anyway, isn’t it?

8. Refuse to listen to anyone that knows better.

9. When board members  are uncertain or concerned, reinforce their uncertainty by agreeing with their fears and reminding them that it’s always been this way and will always be this way.

10. Always speak in the past tense, focus on yesterday and talk about the good ol’ days.  We’ll always have time to talk about tomorrow, but yesterday is gone forever, let’s do our best to keep it alive.

OK, seriously, my legal counsel is about to make me delete all of this If I don’t offer some type of disclaimer.

I’m joking and being sarcastic – this is not real advice – please don’t do these things.

So why did I take this sarcastic approach?? Because, unfortunately, people still do these things after being told not to do them.  So this is my attempt at reverse psychology?  Seriously, don’t make these mistakes.

Be the best Board Chair your ABLE to be.


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