Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Strategy and Hurd

Core to a CEO job, and at a time when resources are diminishing and demand growing it's not an easy task to see your way through.

ACEVO, as an umbrella organisation has had to adjust to a significant decline in Government support for capacity building. Government have made a mistake in not funding strategic bodies who support the sector growth, but it is their decision and we have to adjust to it. That means more diversity of income and looking at partnership working.

So to that end I have had 2 recent strategic awayday sessions with my Directors team.

I debated whether to have them facilitated. I'm in 2 minds on facilitators: some simply irritate the hell out of me and others think it's a therapy session. Anyway my Membership Director persuaded me we should and we used one of the facilitators from our ACEVO Solutions database. In fact had 2 very interesting mornings working on our strategy in HQ. Delivered by Nic Hinrichsen, ACEVO Consultant, it was a great relief to be working with someone who knew what they were talking about and how to handle us (especially me!).

He came from our pool of associates who we match up with members of the sector to support them in various different means and ways.

Eleanor Dandy here looks after this service and is running the event" ASK ACEVO Consulting" on 11th December for either face to face or remote support for sessions of an hour each. A great opportunity to get support in a variety of different areas from our consultants.

Contact; eleanor.dandy@Acevo.org.uk or call 0207 0144 625

So that's the fun bit of the Blog. Now I turn to Mr Hurd MP, our third sector Minister who has announced he is rejecting the Hodgson recommendation that charity trustee boards be allowed to make their own decisions on payment of trustees. You would think a Government committed to reducing red tape and freeing charities from unnecessary burdens would welcome hodgson. But oh no. Apparently Hurd thinks it's one of the defining characteristics of charity. I bet you some Government minister opined in the same way back in the 19th century when they started paying charity CEOs!

The Government's response to Hodgson's recommendation on trustee pay is a simple failure of leadership, dressed up with a logic that is both flawed and offensive to the charities who want to pay their trustees.

It is sheer hypocrisy for a Government to say it wants to slash red tape to then stop charities deciding themselves whether to pay trustees.

And it is offensive to those charities who already pay their trustees to base that argument on a view that unpaid trusteeship is a "defining characteristic" of charities.

Mr Hurd had a chance to accept Hodgson and free trustee boards to adapt to 21st century governance. He has wimped out.

To say I'm disappointed with Hurd would be an understatement and I have been blunt about him publicly. Speaking truth to power. I'm sure the new Chair of the Charity Commission will approve.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Describing voluntary trusteeship as a "defining characteristic" does not imply that it is a condition. Trustees can be paid where it is in the interest of the Charity to do so and who better to judge this than the Regulator? If payment of a trustee can be justified, the Commission will authorise it. It seems clear that you are in the minority on this point.