Articles on Governance and Leadership in Purpose Driven Organisations.
What is an Incorporated Association?
An incorporated association is one of several formal legal structures available to non-profit organisations in Australia. Incorporating your association can offer your members certain rights and legal benefits. The main benefit of incorporating as an association is that your members will have limited liability status and will be protected legally if you fail to meet your financial obligations or are sued for negligence. When establishing a non-profit organisation, founders can choose from a large range of legal formats.
Cooperatives in Australia: What are they?
Co-operatives in Australia come in several different forms. The co-op organisational structure may be the right one for you if your goal is to produce goods and services in an isolated community where the middleman is making it difficult for businesses to thrive or people to access affordable services. Co-ops in Australia may vary since each has its own unique purpose and membership. An organisation’s legal structure will determine the types of activities you are legally able to carry out and which government bodies it is required to seek registration from or report to.
Constitutions – The Foundations of Good Governance
Constitutions are crucial documents. At a national level, they describe how a country is governed. In democracies Prime Ministers and Presidents are elected to office following the processes described in a nation’s constitution. The Australian parliament states that the “national constitution is a set of rules for governing a country”. Similarly, constitutions lie at the heart of associations and charities and provide their rules. Significantly, they define who the members are and the process by which the organisation is run and elects its leadership.
What is a Company Limited by Guarantee?
When establishing your non-profit organisation, you have several legal structure options to choose from, including an incorporated or unincorporated association, a cooperative, a charitable trust, or a company limited by guarantee (CLG). As a founder, the choice you make will determine the types of activities you can legally carry out. An organisation’s legal structure will inform the way reports and registration requirements are determined and regulated by government bodies and must be made clear during the registration process.
Coaches in the Boardroom?
Leading a not-for-profit organisation can be a lonely pursuit but it need not be. Leadership experts say board chairs, non-executive directors and CEOs all need allies to help them monitor and navigate the shifting dynamics of a volunteer board. Increasingly, not-for-profit leaders are looking to organisational or executive coaches to be that thinking partner. And, with good reason. Organisational coaching is a practice that has been proven to increase effectiveness of decision-making, sharpen strategic focus, develop, and encourage constructive board leadership behaviours, and help navigate transitions.
In Service of Two Masters – Conflicts in the Context of Multiple Directorships
Director recruitment is an important task for both not-for-profit and for-profit organisations alike. It is an opportunity to enhance the skills, experience and diversity of the existing board and ensure the directors are best placed to serve the organisation into the future. But what happens when the preferred candidate already sits on multiple boards, including the board of a potential competitor? It is a well-known principle of corporate governance that a director owes certain duties to the organisation they serve.
How to Handle Conflicts of Interest at your Not-for-profit Organisation
A conflict of interest occurs when someone has the opportunity to use their authority to benefit themselves, instead of the party they’re supposed to be serving. In not-for-profits (NFPs), this can take the form of awarding lucrative supply contracts to family or friends, giving certain people exclusive benefits, or interfering with awards. NFPs have to consistently monitor for conflicts of interest, so that changes with the agenda and board members’ circumstances don’t create an issue no one catches.
Integrating ESG into Not-for-Profits: Managing Risks and Opportunities
Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategies and practices have become important aspects for Not-For-Profits (NFPs). The three ESG pillars are not only essential in risk management but have also been seen as emerging considerations for growth and opportunities. The three pillars of ESG are: “E” - the Environmental aspects. This refers to the NFP’s environmental impact and environmental stewardship. “S” - the Social aspects. This refers to how the NFP manages relationships with, and creates value for, stakeholders - including the interaction with its employees, beneficiaries, and the community.
Climate Risk Governance – The Role of the Board
Organisations can no longer ignore the pressing need for a proper climate risk governance strategy. Corporate liability due to failure to discharge duty in direct relation to climate risk is now a reality. Boards and directors can — and should — systematically apply a climate risk governance strategy to ensure they have discharged due care and diligence to mitigate this risk. At one of our recent webinars on Climate Risk Governance, Charlotte Turner, Senior Associate at MinterEllison, presented the key ways in which not-for-profit (NFP) boards and directors should effectively govern climate risk.
The Rise of Technology During the Pandemic – A Double Edged Sword
The impacts of COVID-19 are continuing to be felt across all industries and the charity and not-for-profit (NFP) sector is no exception. Sudden lockdowns and disruptions to service delivery forced charities and NFPs to embrace technology as one of the only ways forward. Whilst technology can improve efficiency, foster collaboration, expand opportunities for growth and help organisations better deliver services, it is a double-edged sword. Cybersecurity incidents have soared during the pandemic with charities and NFPs being a prime target.