Rick Maurer, author of Beyond the Wall of Resistance and other books on leadership and change, developed the Energy Bar™ as a free tool to help people in organizations get their ideas across in ways that get people committed and engaged. RickRick has advised leaders from many countries on ways to apply this new tool successfully.


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Developing a High Performing Board

Yesterday, I conducted a webinar for iCohere titled Developing a High Performing Board. You can watch below for free.


During the webinar, we chose a common challenge for association leaders and together developed a resolution using The Energy Bar™. The Energy Bar is a tactical tool that can really get a group engaged, and you can see it in action in the webinar. It has proven effective for getting everyone involved and working together.

For our exercise, the group chose the challenge of getting a board engaged in top priorities versus spending its time micro-managing and doing staff work.

I suggested that the energy they needed from the board was at “Willing” on The Energy Bar™ scale. (If you don’t know this tool, please take 3 minutes and watch the animated video, www.energybartools.com). I guessed that the board’s energy was probably at “Uninterested” or “Grumbling” when it came to doing the real strategic work needed from the board.

So, we had a gap to fill. How do we get the board to move from uninterested to willing? 

Find out why the board’s energy is where it is.

My advice was to find out why the board is locked into micro-managing. Any (or a combo platter) of the following could be at play.

·         They don’t know what the work of a board is supposed to be.

·         They are most comfortable doing management things rather than setting direction. Maybe that’s where their skills and interests are.

·         Perhaps they don’t trust association staff to get the work done, so they take it upon themselves to manage day-to-day work. 

If you don’t know why, you can’t resolve the issues.

If you don’t know why the board is micro-managing, you must find out. Otherwise, you’ll be flying without radar. I encourage you to read The Magic List www.rickmaurer.com/magic-list. It is a short and free e-book. “The list” is a foundation piece for virtually of my work with clients.

It’s only when you know why board members feel the way they do, that you will be able to step in their shoes and work with them to learn what can be done to move them one step closer to willing. In the webinar, I showed the group an easy way to test out ideas before actually getting in front of the board on this issue. I invited participants to join me as I tried to create a good strategy. I believe that portion of the webinar begins about halfway through the one-hour webinar.

Are you currently facing a challenge? Try the Energy Bar Tool by answering three questions about your challenge. At the end of your assessment, the tool matches you with solutions to help you get back on track.