Expert Coaching. Practical Resources.

Custom On-Site Workshops


All workshops are facilitated by a qualified Carver governance consultant.  This includes the professional designation, Governance Systems Professional (GSP), a designation from Govern for Impact that identifies individuals who have either attended the Policy Governance Academy led by John and Miriam Carver or completed the Policy Governance Proficiency Program (PGP) and passed the PGP final exam. Full details about the GSP here.  Choose from our selection of workshops below:

Introductory Policy Governance® Workshop


  • One-day introduction to the principles of John Carver’s Policy Governance model
  • Sufficient detail and opportunity for questions, to enable a board to make an informed decision as to whether it wishes to proceed with implementing Policy Governance

Appropriate for:

  • Individual boards and CEOs in the exploratory stage, wishing to learn more about the Carver model
  • Groups of boards and management in any community, all interested in exploring the possibilities of Policy Governance
  • New members of boards already using Policy Governance, as orientation
  • Boards who have implemented Policy Governance on their own or with an outside helper, as a “refresher”, given by a qualified Policy Governance coach who is fully conversant with the details of the Policy Governance model

Full Implementation of Policy Governance®


  • Two-day initial workshop, including review of Policy Governance principles, and development of a majority of policies other than Ends policies
  • One to two-day follow-up workshop to complete policy development and begin work on Ends policies
    Note: Some boards may require additional time for policy development, depending on board size, type of organization, and other factors
  • Coaching during first year of implementation (Coaching Details)

Appropriate for:

  • Boards who have made a commitment to implement Policy Governance, along with their administrative and management teams

Advanced Policy Governance® Workshop

Customized workshops for boards already using Policy Governance, designed to address specific aspects of implementation and advance their understanding and application of the principles in order to achieve mastery of Policy Governance.

Appropriate for:
Boards who have already developed basic policies, and wish to deepen their understanding of Policy Governance principles to obtain the most value from the model.

Choose from a menu of topics such as:

Meaningful Monitoring
Learn about monitoring “in the real world” by looking at actual examples of monitoring reports from a variety of organizational types. We will discuss examples to emulate, and traps to avoid. At the end of this session participants will know:

  • How to properly assess a monitoring report (if they are board members)
  • How to prepare a good monitoring report, including interpretation and evidence (if they are staff)
  • How to identify common traps in monitoring and avoid them

This workshop can be completely customized to improve your monitoring reports for your board’s specific Ends policies and Executive Limitations. It may be designed as a working session for administrative staff who have been delegated responsibility to write monitoring reports, and/or board members who assess monitoring reports.

How to Eat an Elephant – Ownership Linkage
Ownership Linkage is a key element of the board’s job, and an essential part of creating Ends policies. To many boards it seems such an overwhelming job that it feels like trying to eat an elephant. This session will break that elephant into some “bite-size” pieces, examining key elements and actually creating a “perpetual” comprehensive ownership linkage plan customized for your board.

  • Who are your owners?
  • How do you “get to” them?
  • What about “representative” input?
  • What kind of questions do you ask?
  • What do you do with the information when you get it?
  • Develop your customized ownership linkage plan.

Future-Focused Agendas
Do your agendas sometimes feel like you are just going through the motions? Once your board has developed its Ends policies and Executive Limitations, how should you spend your time to provide effective leadership? You know that your role is not to focus on operations, so what should you be doing? This session offers practical ideas and tools to help your board lead from the front of the parade, with an eye to helping create the future for your organization.

Servant-Leadership in Policy Governance
Examine how the concepts of Servant-Leadership enunciated by Robert Greenleaf, and the Policy Governance model can be integrated. We will look at how a board can apply the concepts of Servant-Leadership within the principles of the Policy Governance model, using specific examples of how policies can be developed to make this possible. At the end of this session, participants will understand:

  • The major concepts involved in Robert Greenleaf’s writings about Servant-Leadership
  • How an organization can integrate the concepts of Servant-Leadership into its policies
  • The synergies between Servant-Leadership and Policy Governance

Using Policy Governance to Shape Risk Culture
The heightened interest in governance at corporate levels has led to boards in all types of organizations being more aware of the risks associated with board membership, as well as the need to have a well-designed risk management strategy for their organizations. In this session, participants will have an opportunity to identify various types of risks that concern their organizations. They will leave with a coherent process by which they can turn the “worries” associated with those risks into policies that can be readily monitored. This process, done regularly, frees up the board’s “psychic RAM” to concentrate on Ends-related issues.

Board Self-Evaluation
As a board, you are entrusted with the stewardship of resources on behalf of someone else. That places a moral obligation on you to use those resources most effectively. This means that the board must be able to show accountability for the organization as a whole. Is it achieving what it ought to achieve? The board sets the direction for the organization. If the board is not doing its job effectively, the whole organization suffers. The board is responsible for its own development, job design, self-discipline and performance. These are not areas that can be delegated to the CEO. Self-evaluation is a way to assure yourselves and your ownership that you take accountability seriously. Learn the details of how to do a good board self-evaluation. This session may be expanded into a guided board self-evaluation.

Designing A Governance Information System
Managing the information overload related to board work can be daunting. In this session, we examine what kinds of information a board needs, and how it differs from the information used by management. We also explore information sources and ways of organizing and managing governance information to most effectively support board work.

Policy Governance® Workshops for Management

Custom-designed workshops include:

  • Introduction to Policy Governance, to understand implications for management
  • Facilitation of strategic planning sessions following board development of Ends policies
  • Development of monitoring reports that meet board needs
  • Application of Policy Governance principles to the management of staff

Appropriate for:

  • Management and/or all of the organization staff

What does the GSP designation mean?

The professional designation, Governance Systems Professional (GSP), was introduced in 2019 by GOVERN FOR IMPACT to identify individuals who exemplify a high standard of governance knowledge and expertise and who are dedicated to advancing the field of governance – as distinct from management.

To qualify for the designation, The Governance Coach™ consultant must:

  • have attended the Policy Governance Academy™ led by John and Miriam Carver or completed the Policy Governance® Proficiency Program (PGP), and passed the PGP final exam;
  • commit to professional conduct as embodied in the standards of the GSP Code of Ethics;
  • on a continuing basis complete the required level of professional development credits; and
  • maintain an affiliation with the designation granting body, GOVERN FOR IMPACT.

The GSP designation enables organizations to identify those with knowledge and expertise who are committed to supporting boards to achieve governance excellence, upholding professional integrity in their work with boards, and continuing to expand their governance knowledge and competencies, including the application of Policy Governance principles and practices.

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Policy Governance® Virtual Workshops

Stay tuned for Fall 2024 dates!

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