1. I agree with Tina’s comment that there isn’t always just one right view of the future. However, it is so important for a Strategic Planning Session to be rooted in a consensus view of the Vision for our cooperative. Once the Board and senior management agree on that, the Strategic Plan becomes much more focused. As well, it is important to look at the entire environment, both internally and externally, to help inform the best view of the future at the point in time that you are looking at the future. This is where a diverse Board can contribute so much in terms of alternative perspectives, especially if the Board’s diversity mirrors the diversity of the membership base.
2. I certainly am not positive that we have overcome these issues. I like to think that our focus on Board education, term limits on directors, and encouraging directors to attend cooperative conferences and events to get exposure to other ideas does help to a large extent. Annual Board assessments are also helpful in focusing the Board on governance areas where we may not be utilizing best practices in Board oversight.