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Governance 101: an introduction to organizational governance

  • 08 Dec 2020
  • 09 Dec 2020
  • 2 sessions
  • 08 Dec 2020, 10:00 AM 5:00 PM (EST)
  • 09 Dec 2020, 10:00 AM 5:00 PM (EST)
  • Webinar
  • 0


  • $1299 + HST
  • $1499 + HST
  • $1399 + HST

Registration is closed


This 2-day intensive workshop will be launched as a virtual course, as a pre-cursor to our GPC Education program. In this course, participants will gain basic exposure to the subject matter of governance.

The ideal audience for this course includes the following:

  • Individuals who are new to their role
  • People with junior positions in their organizations with some governance functions
  • Individuals in administrative positions attending to governance processes
  • Boards or more senior governance professionals may also not have had a proper introduction to the subject matter


The objectives of the course are as follows:

1.      Focus on individuals who have little or no knowledge of governance but could be:  

  • Joining a NFP board for the first time
  • Executive assistant being asked to take notes at board or management meetings
  • In process of accepting or moving into a position related to organizational governance
  • Individuals wanting to position themselves for a position related to governance

2.     Provide access to a training program that is financially accessible

3.     Provide an intensive 2-day session that fulfills knowledge requirements in a brief time.

4.      To be a critical component of a planned ‘Governance in a Box’ concept which will consist of the 2-day workshop, a Glossary of Terms, and an on-line tool to provide access to the documents, forms, templates and best practices needed for establishing an effective governance framework for various kinds of organizations.


  1. Understand what governance means, and how it looks the same and different for various kinds of organizations
  2. Understand the key principles of governance: accountability, transparency, independence, participation and predictability
  3. Learn about the different structures that underpin the governance of an organization: by-laws, board of directors, committees,
  4. Learn about the decision-making process for organizations through meetings, resolutions, minutes, board/management relationships
  5. Understand the nature of the organization’s relationships with various stakeholders: the difference between shareholders and members; why understanding stakeholder needs is a key governance function.


Day 1  - Understanding Governance Basics

Morning Session

  • What is governance: essential terms and definitions
  • We ‘build’ the governance structure based on the organization’s purpose;
  • Structure consists of the legal entity choice – essential ‘plumbing’ in by-laws – board – committee –
  • 5 key Governance Principles described
  • Breakout exercises to understand how principles get put into practice

Afternoon Session

  • Strengthening structure for better decisions
  • By-laws
  • Boards
  • Committees
  • Dividing the work/responsibilities – Board and management
  • What do directors really do? Their duties and responsibilities

Breakout sessions: 

  1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of a ‘big’ board? 
  2. Why do people join boards of directors?  
  3. Should employees always have a seat in the boardroom?

Day 2  - The Key Tools for good governance

Morning Session

  • The role of the corporate secretary/governance professional
  • Effective meetings: what, why, who and how
  • AGMs Special meetings, board and committee meetings
  • Key tools 
  • Getting the right board: composition, terms, orientation
  • And keeping it effective: training and evaluations

Afternoon Session

  • Meeting minutes
  • What are corporations are worrying about:
  • CSR/ESG/Triple Bottom Line/Sustainability – all explained
  • CEO compensation – what is the issue?
  • Diversity and inclusion – what is the issue?
  •  Breakout session:  What is your organization worrying about?

Janis Riven, BCL, LLB, MBA, FCIS,
Acc. Dir., Principal
Governance & Compliance Solutions
(Click on the speaker's name to see her biography.)

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