I have recently been appointed as a community governor for a local free school, something I have wanted to do for a while and was motivated after hearing Katy Langham speak about Inspiring the Future at the recent WiFM conference.
So, what is the role of a governing body?
Well its key functions are to:
- set the aims and objectives for the school
- set the policies and targets for achieving those aims and objectives and monitor and evaluate progress
- be a source of challenge and support to the headteacher
- ensure the financial health of the school
Whilst the role of a governing body is not a day to day operational one there are many parallels with FM. So, what do you need to be successful?
It’s important to start by understanding the vision and goals of the organisation, evaluate where you are strategically, operationally and financially and where the strengths and weaknesses are. Then you can start to identify the next steps.
Are we asking the right questions? It’s not always easy to challenge your client or stakeholders but if you’re pragmatic and sensitive you can question assumptions and ask the ‘why’, ‘what’ ‘if’ and ‘how’ in order to gain insight, help solve issues and drive change.
Setting, monitoring and reviewing the strategy is key to the success of any school or organisation. But hand in hand with this is the ability to deliver operationally. And the key to both is communication and engagement. If everyone understands what it is they’re trying to achieve people are more likely to come along for the ride.
FM is successful when working alongside different business streams and putting the needs of people, place and performance at the forefront of delivery. Yes, increasing return on investment and reducing operating and energy costs are key but don’t forget it’s also about improving the whole life performance of your assets and improving the productivity and well-being of your people.
Continuous improvement – think Deming – plays a big part in driving change, creating sustainable businesses and working environments and delivering key benefits.
If strong governance is key to successfully putting schools at the heart of our communities and inspiring future generations, then putting FM at the heart of your organisation is vital to its success.
Are you inspired? Or do you need the LCMB team to help you? LCMB can improve the performance and productivity of your buildings and supply chains to increase your organisation’s return on investment and competitiveness contact Rudi du Plessis, Associate Director or 01295 722 823.