The Importance of Good Governance

Dr. Les Stahlke; Consultant on GovernanceFlying Mission has been privileged to benefit from the skills and gifts of Dr. Les Stahlke, a consultant specialising in Governance (which he defines as “… the process of directing and controlling an organisation by policy rather than individual management decisions”). He has a wealth of experience in this area having been a CEO himself for 35 years in Canada, the U.S., the U.K and 6 countries in Africa. He says, “today I travel the world assisting Boards of Directors to make the change from managing to governing … I’ve worked with over 200 boards and about 300 CEOs since I started global consulting in 1999.”

He first engaged with FM at the start of 2012 and since then has been giving his time generously to work with all in FM to provide governance training and consultancy; he has made 13 trips to Botswana since then and expects to be working with FM until the end of November 2013

It has been amazing to see that through his engagement with FM it has exposed the great need and demand that exists for governance training and consulting in Botswana. In his short time in country he has provided training sessions for church leaders and NGOs and from that has been asked by 16 separate organisations to provide specific governance training and consultancy for them (including ‘BONOSO’ – Botswana Network of AIDS Service Organisations, ‘BOCONGO’ – Botswana Council of Non-Governmental Organisations, ‘BONEPWA+’ – Botswana Network of People Living with HIV and AIDS, ‘BOCAIP’ – Botswana Christian AIDS Intervention Program, ‘BONELA’ – Botswana Network on Ethics, Law and HIV/AIDS, Apostolic Faith Mission, Independent Assemblies of Botswana and  Open Baptist Church).

So why is governance important?

Dr. Stahlke states that “… it is important as it defines how people, can work together in a way that is both effective and is personally fulfilling; people should ‘glow in the dark’ not burn out because ‘they are on fire for the Lord’.” He adds that effective governance is based on “… using authority the way Christ taught us; with affirmation, collaboration and servant leadership. If relationships are designed in the way God intended, people are going to be effective and fulfilled.”

Dr. Stahlke also highlights that accountability is a key part of good governance. He says, “Christians are great at forgiving but not very good at accountability. We have to find a way to see accountability as a gift. As much as I want to be trusted I want even more so to be accountable … Forgiveness is free but trust is expensive. We can only build trust through demonstrating trust worthiness and this comes from accountability.”

Why is Dr. Stahlke involved in this work?

He states that he “… gets a thrill out of enabling people to work through difficult periods in their organisation”. He states “… clarifying how authority flows in an organisation is probably the most important first step in creating a healthy workplace.”

To find out more about governance, to access useful free resources, and for more information about Dr. Les Stahlke and his work in this area check out his blog at: relationshipmodel.com