An interview with . . . Laura McAllister

At our Governance Conference 2020, Laura McAllister, Professor of Public Policy and the Governance of Wales at the Wales Governance Centre, will look at what we as organisations can learn from the Governance failures within public and voluntary/third sectors. Here’s an insight into the session:

Summarise your session in one sentence.
The session will look at how organisations can improve by looking back at their successes and failures, and learning from past mistakes.

What one piece of advice would you give for good governance?
We need to be taking governance seriously and invest in the foundations of good governance with a diverse board. It’s a fundamental part of our organisations.

Why is it so important for housing associations to learn from past mistakes?
It’s important that we encourage the idea of a learning culture that is prepared to listen to challenge from people outside of our usual environment. It’s also vital that we looking at other sector’s as well as our own, and see what we can learn. Sectors like sport, where athletes use failure as a springboard for ways forward, and where they are naturally goal oriented and self-critical.

How important is good governance for the future of organisations?
It’s critical. People dwell on failures of organisations, yet failures can usually be predicted, with poor leadership, strong egos and too much emphasis on individuals rather than organisational development and future proofing. But we mustn’t be nervous about championing our successes. Both success and failure strengthen organisations.

What will delegates get out of your session?
To air your failures. Be more transparent. Accept your challenges.

What are you looking forward to most at the Governance Conference?
I’m hoping it will be an interactive conversation with people who are committed to improving governance, so come in with an open mind.

Book your place at Governance Conference 2020 here.

 

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