Board and Governance

Policy-Based Governance Glossary


Policy Types:

Ends
One of the four types of policies that the board writes, Ends define what long-term, mission-related results are to be achieved, for whom, and at what cost or priority.

Means
Actions needed to accomplish the Ends or to protect the organization. All policies that are not Ends Policies are considered to be Means Polices.

Board-Executive Relationship Policies
Policies that clarify how the board delegates authority to the executive, and how it will evaluate executive performance in relation to the Ends and the Executive Limitations.

Executive Limitations
Policies that define what the Executive (and his/her delegees) may NOT do as they work to accomplish the Ends. These policies are designed to protect the church ethically, legally and financially, while giving the Executive a great deal of creative latitude to design and implement programming.

Governance Process Policies:
Policies that identify the board’s philosophy, its accountability and the specifics of its own job.

Other terms:

Executive
The person or team that is charged by board to carry out the church's Ends. In our case, the Executive is the minister.

Linkage
Regular activities undertaken by the board to connect with the moral owners, to hear what they have to say and to represent them effectively.

Monitoring
The processes and tools boards use to evaluate organizational performance. Specifically, the board uses regular monitoring to track whether the executive is accomplishing the Ends and staying within the Executive Limitations and to evaluate whether the board is faithful to its Governance Process policies.

Moral Owners
The people who are not at the board table, on whose behalf the board governs and to whom the board is accountable. May include individual or organizations beyond the members/congregants.