digitalNow
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digitalNow
Exploring leadership, management, innovation, and technology issues and trends; impacting associations & non-profit organizations in the digital age.
Curated by Don Dea
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The intuitive leader: Accessing the field 

Step one: Connect to the silence within

Far below all of our incessant mind-chatter, the list of what we have to do and what we have not yet done, the voices that berate us and celebrate us, is a quiet space. This space can be found with as little effort as taking a breath.
In the pause that precedes every inhale, lives silence. Take one breath and try it.
When we can learn to rest in it over time, we become comfortable in not needing to chase after conscious thought for answers.
Step two: Heed the impulse

From the space of silence, a clear impulse beyond rational understanding may arise. When this aligns with your ultimate vision, the impulse should be heeded.
It may come as an instantaneous knowing accompanied by an image of how it will move the vision forward. At other times, it may come as a sense of urgency and excitement that is designed to steer you to action.
When this impulse arises, and it’s uncluttered by a fear-based emotion or limiting perceptions, it can serve as a sign post pointing you to the next step on your path.
Step three: Stepping into action

When you are moved to step into action, follow the feeling of the impulse. There does not need to be a clearly defined plan of action or a clearly designated image to follow. Instead, there is a gut sense of how this impulse will carry you forward.
Trust what comes and move with it. Once and action is taken, it is vital that we sit back, observe its impact, and return to silence as we integrate our learning and await the next impulse. When we practice these three steps in continual succession, we discover a circular dynamic continually moving us toward our vision, guiding our action and responses.
With practice, this capacity to move and respond from intuition will be refined and honed. Ultimately, as Co-Active Leaders in the Field, we accept ownership for the whole of life on our planet. We seek to create a world that works for everyone because we understand that we are a part of everything that is happening in our larger world. We do, in fact, create our world together, every day, and all of our actions have an impact.
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The Accidental Communicator

If You Say It, You Have To Own It

The speech that you give has to be your speech which represents your thoughts and feelings. Often times we’ll add additional things to our speech to support our position such as quotes or statistics. If the amount of time that you have to give a speech just got shorter, these are the things that you’ll need to drop. Keep the parts that clearly make this your speech and your thoughts.

Everything You Say Must Be Purposeful

This may be the most important part of your speech. Why are you giving it? What actions do you want your audience to take based on hearing your speech? These are all points that you have to be very, very clear about. No matter how little time you are given to deliver your speech, the purpose of your speech much be front and center of your speech.
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Falling Into the Digital Divide

Falling Into the Digital Divide | digitalNow | Scoop.it
While 94 percent of the U.S. public is connected and 91 percent of the poor have Internet access, the researchers conclude that there's a growing problem with citizens being "under-connected." In many cases, this translates into a single Internet-connected computer or smartphone in the household or slow service.

All of this makes it more difficult for adults to conduct business or obtain health and medical information. Yet it also impacts children and their ability to learn. Vikki Katz, a Rutgers University scholar and co-author of the study, notes that poor connectivity impacts "the kinds of things that help families get by and the kinds of things that help families get ahead."

Although many initially viewed the Internet as a way to span the so-called digital divide and raise education and income levels, it's increasingly clear that today's broadband is more like a frayed rope bridge straddling a deep canyon. Knowledge and skills shortages are now a chronic problem for U.S. businesses looking to compete in the digital economy -- and IT is often at the center of this troubling equation.

Yet it isn't only the poor who are taking a hit. The U.S. now ranks 24th in Internet speed worldwide, according to content delivery network firm Akamai. Incredibly, Bulgaria, Romania and Latvia rank higher. And let's not even delve into rural areas of the U.S., where broadband is still nothing more than a pipe dream. Although the FCC's Connect America Fund program is moving forward, it alone cannot solve the problem.

Amid a deeply divisive political environment, Congress and states need to focus on how to expand broadband access to all so that the underserved don't wind up becoming the completely disenfranchised. In addition, industry needs to think about how it can play a role in supporting and building out broadband—including boosting speeds to keep the U.S. competitive. Kudos to Google and its Fiber project, which is already rolling out free fast Internet connectivity to those living in low-income households.

Here's the deal: a lack of investment in broadband now will very likely translate into a diminished ability to compete (and far fewer customers) in the not-too-distant future.
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The Fight for a Smaller Slice of the Pie

The Fight for a Smaller Slice of the Pie | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Remaking the pie for higher profits

The paradox is clear: the harder you fight for your piece of the pie, the smaller the pie becomes. Perhaps it is better to put your money and energy into changing the pie itself. There are plenty of examples of companies going against the market trend by focusing on the real value they deliver to their customers. For example, in the media industry, newspapers such as Die Zeit in Germany and Holland’s Volkskrant, have maintained or even grown their paper circulation. Their secret: they changed from being  primarily a collector of news facts to an interpreter of news, providing relevant background information based on their own research.

There are also stores, such as home and cosmetic retailer Rituals, which have been able to create a special appeal through their unique product range, atmosphere and service, luring customers away from e-commerce sites. Some manufacturers of branded goods decided not to confine themselves to pretty commercials but to start an open dialogue with their customers, such as Unilever did with its Dove campaign.

Not every company will succeed in turning the tide; at the very least, the pie will taste better.
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Four Signs That Your Industry is Ripe for Digital Disruption

Four Signs That Your Industry is Ripe for Digital Disruption | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Can the product or customer experience be digitised with little or no negative impact on customer satisfaction?
It’s true that nowadays customers expect to be able to access the majority of products and services digitally, but the extent of digitisation expected varies depending on the industry.

In some sectors, the human element remains crucial to customer satisfaction. The majority of people still prefer to see a doctor when they’re ill rather than to consult WebMD. When we have a customer service issue we mostly opt to speak to a person rather than an automated answering machine. For now, when we need legal advice, most of us prefer to consult with a human expert. And until the driverless revolution actually takes place, we still need a person to drive us around even if we’ll happily find them through an app.

In other sectors, the product or service can be just as good or even better when the human is replaced by a machine. Once upon a time, few could imagine automated supermarket check-outs, let alone shopping on the internet. Now, online shopping is par for the course and can often be quicker, more convenient, and more cost-effective than shopping in store. As delivery, particularly for non-food products, has become more reliable and cheaper, it has become possible for more and more consumers to get a good, and sometimes better, experience online than in-store.

The bottom line is this: where there is scope for some or all of the customer experience to be replicated - or improved - through digitisation, sooner or later it most certainly will be. The answer? Get there first.
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4 characteristics that set successful people apart 

4 characteristics that set successful people apart  | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Successful people grit up

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan “Press On” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race—Calvin Coolidge
No matter how talented someone is, success demands psychological traits like grit and persistence if they expect to keep moving forward when confronted with an obstacle or roadblock.
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Public speaking and the confirmation bias 

Public speaking is widely regarded as one of the most nerve wracking things we can do in our professional lives, and I’ve written a few times about various technologies that aim to help you, whether it’s an AI that will write your speech for you, a VR environment to allow you to practice, or augmented glasses to give you live feedback as you present.

These are all well and good, but there is still no getting away from the actual act of standing up in front of an audience and doing your thing. One of the trickiest parts of public speaking is knowing where to look.  Whilst thankfully the old advice to imagine the audience naked is seldom trotted out, there is still a degree of confusion as to whether you should focus on a friendly face, or scan the room.

It’s probably fair to say that the consensus is to spread your gaze around to create the impression that you’re speaking to the whole room, but how do you respond to the expressions on those faces as you glance about?
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The Real Pokémon Game Is Already Over

The Real Pokémon Game Is Already Over | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Computers do much of the news analysis now, tracking newswires around the clock and responding immediately. “They’re just looking for mathematical relationships and patterns,” Fanarakis says.

Unfortunately, machines are only as good as the algorithms that humans create. Fanarakis says banks have responded by hiring the best mathematicians and computer scientists they can find from any field. “One of the people who helped build our model was literally a rocket scientist,” she says. “Math is math. You establish the mathematical relationship between assets and what’s driving things.”

Certain rules apply, which guide the predictive models. When the world is going through upheaval, for example, people will always buy U.S. dollars. “At the end of the day when things are really bad, people trust the Fed to do the right thing and act rationally,” Fanarakis says.

Rules also have exceptions, which means the science of correlating news events to investment decisions remains inexact. “It’s always better to be lucky than smart,” Fanarakis says. “There are very few firms that have been able to be successful year after year.”
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The Most Popular Social Networks With Enterprise Marketers

The Most Popular Social Networks With Enterprise Marketers | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Marketers at large companies say Facebook is both the most used social network by their businesses and also the most effective one for engaging audiences, according to recent research from Clutch.

The report was based on data from a survey of 304 social media marketers who work at companies with more than 100 employees; 62% of respondents work for firms with more than 500 employees.

Some 97% of B2C companies and 95% of B2B companies say they use Facebook as a marketing channel.

Twitter ranks second (75% of B2C companies, and 74% of B2B).

YouTube is third (61%, both B2B and B2C).
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Customer Value Data and Business Results

Customer Value Data and Business Results | digitalNow | Scoop.it
why is Customer Value Added not being used more frequently? Part of the reason is that satisfaction studies are more entrenched and prevalent. People who use them do not realise that satisfaction does not relate to loyalty. CSat is a great way to measure transactions but not value. The experience of the transaction is captured. But often you want to assess something that has not happened, like the expectation of a retailer that your company will bring out new products, and provide more business to them. This cannot be captured by an experience or a satisfaction study.

Once you have decided on the Value Priority for improvement, then the satisfaction data can be a useful measure to check improvements. You focus your satisfaction study on those items that have a Value Priority for improvement

Customer Value studies also correlate to business results. The Customer Value Added data has a one on one correlation with the market share. The results are seen (in this example 4 months later) sometime after the Value addition has been made by the company, because it takes time for the new value to rollout into the market place.
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Most Businesses See Data As Main IoT Benefit, Eye Security Challenges

Most Businesses See Data As Main IoT Benefit, Eye Security Challenges | digitalNow | Scoop.it
More than half (56%) of businesses say Big Data analytics is the main benefit of utilizing IoT technologies and 56% also say security is the top technical challenge, according to a new report.

The IoT 2016 Deployment Trends and Usage survey by Strategy Analytics comprised a survey of 350 global businesses in 23 different verticals about the drivers and challenges of adopting IoT.

The report found that the majority (70%) of businesses are currently using IoT to some degree and even more (80%) plan to do so within the next year. However, only 25% of companies utilize IoT at scale involving an end-to-end solution.

Security remains a significant issue across the board for smart products in a number of studies.

For example, almost half (47%) of security executives estimate that fewer than 10% of IoT products are designed with enough security, based on a survey of 129 senior security executives conducted by IOActive, a security services company. And a majority (70%) say that fewer than a quarter of IoT products have adequate security designed into them.

Among the biggest challenges facing IoT security, the lack of this security in products tops the list. Here are the challenges seen by security executives:

72% -- Security not adequately designed into products
63% -- Uneducated users or user error
59% -- Data privacy
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A Child's View of Nonprofit Board Culture

A Child's View of Nonprofit Board Culture | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Respect each other’s personal viewpoints and space. 

If you have a sibling or a close friend, or anyone who’s been in your life a significant amount of time, you know that there’s going to be times in your relationship when you disagree. Whether it’s a sibling spat or a boardroom brawl, the type of conversations and relationships you’re allowing to occur between you guides future interactions.

 Are you able to disagree with a fellow board member on an issue and not hold a grudge? Are you making sure you’re putting the family — i.e., your nonprofit — first in your interactions? Are you allowing fellow board members to have differing opinions so that inquisitive discussion is taking place in your boardroom? 
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Generative Governance: Making Sense of Problems through Critical Inquiry

Generative Governance: Making Sense of Problems through Critical Inquiry | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Generative governance creates the conditions for boards to invent the future in some respects.

It may be easier to see how each mode can be addressed with a question:

Fiduciary:  Problems are meant to be spotted and beg the question: What’s wrong?

Strategic:  Problems are meant to be solved and beg the question: What’s the plan?

Generative:  Problems are meant to be framed and beg the question: What’s the key question?

The way the problem is framed can change the answer. Another way to think about these three modes is that the board’s role is distinct in each. When wearing their fiduciary hat, boards are watchdogs focused on compliance. In the strategic mode, boards are strategists setting goals and mobilizing resources toward execution. The generative mode, in my estimation, is the most creative in that it asks board members to be sense makers, interrogating their current reality in anticipation of future challenges facing the organization.
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Emotional Intelligence as a Leadership Predictor

“A leader’s intelligence has to have a strong emotional component. He/she has to have high levels of self-awareness, maturity and self-control. He/she must be able to withstand the heat, handle setbacks and when those lucky moments arise, enjoy success with equal part of joy and humility. No doubt emotional intelligence is more rare than book smarts, but my experience says it is actually more important in the making of a leader. You just can’t ignore it.”
~Jack Welch, Former Chairman of General Electric speaking to WSJ

Leadership begins and ends with inner strength requiring the ability to understand ourselves very well while consistently learning, growing and developing. In addition to enhancing self awareness, strong leaders are adaptable to their surroundings, transparent, exhibit positive energy and practice emotional self-control. Effective leaders are empathetic, service-oriented and organizationally aware of their surroundings, reading people and cues well. Lastly, they are relationship builders, inspiring others, influencing effectively, coaches, people developers, team collaborators and able to manage conflict as well as change. All of these are dimensions of emotional intelligence.
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How to Squeeze Outcomes From Overhead

Every dollar you get from a funder should be put to good use. We, as nonprofits, need to respect that. But as a sector, we also need to be better at communicating how we spend our money and that it’s done in a fair way.
Donors, as conscientious consumers, want to know that their money is being spent in every way possible to improve the social and economic standing of everyone. Look at fair trade chocolate, clothing and coffee—people are happy to spend a little more on products because they know workers are being treated fairly, and they are improving local economies.
There’s no reason that nonprofits can’t justify treating their workers better and improving local economies via fair overhead.
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The Heavy Burden of Forceful Negotiating

The Heavy Burden of Forceful Negotiating | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Negative moves hurt most

The parallels with negotiation are hopefully easy to see: science suggests that negative moves hurt five times more than positive ones can amend and even more so if the interaction is based on a power difference. Even if there is a power difference, the restraint in using such power prevents the decrease in satisfaction and increases positive emotions. Since the impact of negative or power interactions is five times stronger than positive ones, it pays off dramatically to have a very risk-averse and preventive (abstinence of power moves) approach to negotiation.

Thus, when value negotiation suggests a risk/reward approach, it is important for negotiators to calibrate their assessment of risk and attempt to eliminate the inherent and often unnecessary risk contained in power moves. Win-win choices do not mean that we do not take risks or do not seek to maximise the rewards behind our moves, but rather that we maximise rewards, while aware of and mitigating risks by best framing, timing and phrasing what we want to say or do. This way we do not slide five steps backwards for every step forward. As a certain famous brand likes to suggest: Keep moving forward!
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Negotiations Should Never Come Down to Price

Negotiations Should Never Come Down to Price | digitalNow | Scoop.it
The big problem for many negotiators is that they rarely develop a full understanding of their own and the other parties’ interests. Instead negotiators consistently focus myopically on a handful of salient interests, often centred on price. As a result, negotiators often don’t realise how their apparently successful bargaining on price is potentially reducing how well other important interests are met. Ultimately, negotiators who believe price can be negotiated by itself risk both asking for, and saying “yes” to, deals that are potentially worse for them than before the discount.

Let’s be clear. We are not saying that you should not negotiate for a discount. What we are saying is that you can’t change the price you pay without changing what you get in return. Thus, success in negotiation should not be based whether or not you manage to get that discount or concession. Rather success needs to be based on whether the system is in a more valuable state as a result of what you do. This requires you to think through the consequences and reactions, both positive and negative.
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Gamifying Your Loyalty Program for Fun and Profit 

Gamifying Your Loyalty Program for Fun and Profit  | digitalNow | Scoop.it
No one marketing strategy fits all. So how do you create a loyalty program that will increase loyalty and boost revenue?

Above all, a well-executed gamification strategy should be fun for the customer. A customer who’s having fun is more likely to participate in the program. Ideally, a loyalty program should offer rewards to as many customers as possible, encouraging competition and giving the customer goals to strive for. These goals most often take the form of badges, unlocked benefits, or other rewards that seem exclusive.

Your loyalty program should also:

Educate customers about your brand and products
Guide your users toward using more of your products
Make customers into “brand ambassadors” who will spread word of mouth.
A gamification strategy should also include a way to collect and interpret customer data, as well as provide a means of feedback. Finding out what customers do and don’t like about your loyalty program is critical to its success.
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The Marketing Power of Pokemon Go and Other New, Unsaturated Marketing Channels

The Marketing Power of Pokemon Go and Other New, Unsaturated Marketing Channels | digitalNow | Scoop.it
So, yeah, Pokemon Go is a hot topic right now. But how many of your competitors do you think are going to take advantage of it? 

Too many marketers arrive at a new marketing channel at the same time everyone else does. And many marketers are too frightened of failure to try marketing channels that aren't already saturated. 

It doesn't take a brave soul to advertise on Facebook. Everyone is advertising on Facebook.

It wasn't a marketing guru who thought, "this Pokemon thing might work for this pizza place?" It was the manager.

Be that guy!

Gary Vaynerchuk has been preaching Snapchat for a long time. Only recently have businesses been discovering the marketing possibilities with Snapchat. 
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This Is What Your Future Virtual-Reality Office Will Be Like

This Is What Your Future Virtual-Reality Office Will Be Like | digitalNow | Scoop.it
HEAD TO THE VIRTUAL WHITEBOARD . . .
Being able to see the people you’re working with is nice, but it’s even more powerful to be able to see the things we’re working on together.

Imagine that in your virtual conference room there’s a whiteboard on the wall. Your VR/AR glasses can show you the scribbles everyone in this meeting have contributed, all combined into one shared whiteboard. If you run out of room, it’s easy to scroll the virtual whiteboard with a flick of the wrist, exposing new, blank spaces—and to select, cut, and paste scribbles that are already there.

This will prove an unexpectedly powerful feature. For brainstorming and generating new ideas, it really helps to be face to face. And simple as it is, the (analog) whiteboard is ubiquitous because it already lets you do that; people love to draw and write on the wall, and talk about whatever's taking shape there.
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The nonprofit world needs more MBAs: Five reasons why mission-driven professionals should get a business degree

The nonprofit world needs more MBAs: Five reasons why mission-driven professionals should get a business degree | digitalNow | Scoop.it
These problems are real. Respect them by learning more about them.
It’s easy to forget that as a society, we struggle to understand the causes or find tested solutions to homelessness, poverty, or inequality. We hear about a great idea and jump on board without asking for proof. We must have more respect for the complexity of these social issues—and that means learning a lot more about what they are and how to chip away at their causes.

Many nonprofit professionals go an entire career with only anecdotal evidence of their own impact. A management degree will show you how to evaluate your success and identify tactics that don’t work. You’ll waste less precious time and money, and most importantly, save your organization’s beneficiaries from participating in an ineffective—or even harmful—program.
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AR Meets AI, Thanks To Pokemon Go And IBM Watson

AR Meets AI, Thanks To Pokemon Go And IBM Watson | digitalNow | Scoop.it
The system can then aggregate that information and notify Pokémon Go users where exactly Pokémon are located and specifically which Pokémon they are, effectively taking the guesswork out of the gameplay.

Watson, the super-computer system originally known for winning Jeopardy, is now being opened up to developers by IBM and can be a new tool to use in apps, according to Stefania Kaczmarczyk, developer evangelist at IBM Digital Group.

“So you’ve combined IBM’s years and years of research and engineering and then taken that to make it a service that somebody can just say ‘hey, I have a photo, what is this?’ and they can suddenly build an app within 24 hours,” said Kaczmarczyk.
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Will Facebook Change Consumer Opinion on Video Chat Customer Service? 

Will Facebook Change Consumer Opinion on Video Chat Customer Service?  | digitalNow | Scoop.it
With Facebook looking to put heavier emphasis on video content and the influence they previously have had on users, we can assume it won’t be long until it becomes natural for people to contact others, including businesses, by this means of communication. Apple already achieved success for users contacting each other via FaceTime, however organisations like Amazon have introduced customer service via video to their ways of contacting the company.

Amazon’s Attempt

Launched in October 2013, Amazon introduced the “Mayday” button to their product line of Kindle Fire Tablets, offering live on-screen support 24 hours a day. Amazon described it as “the Mayday button brings your own personal tech advisor directly to your sofa or desk.”
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CMO Survey: Which Emerging Technology Will Transform the Customer Experience?

CMO Survey: Which Emerging Technology Will Transform the Customer Experience? | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Senior marketers say Big Data is the emerging technology that will have the biggest impact on the customer experience, according to recent research from the CMO Council and SAP Hybris.

The report was based on a survey conducted in the 1H16 of 170 senior marketing leaders (chief marketing officer, head of marketing, SVP of marketing, etc.) from around the world; 42% of respondents work for B2B organizations, 21% for B2C organizations, and 37% for hybrid organizations.

Some 61% of senior marketers surveyed say Big Data engagements and intelligence (smart recommendations, next best actions, etc.) will have one of the the biggest impacts of any emerging technology on the customer experience and their organization overall.

A total of 37% say the Internet of Things will have one of the biggest impacts.
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Leadership of the Board Chair in Creating Board Culture

Leadership of the Board Chair in Creating Board Culture | digitalNow | Scoop.it
BOARD CHAIR TO-DO LIST:

Ensure that the board is actually governing. Each board member should understand one’s governance role and responsibilities. Duty of care, duty of loyalty, and duty of obedience should be followed by all board members and, as board chair, you must ensure these standards of conduct are operationalized as a component of board culture. 
Create a board culture that empowers the board to its rightful place as the organization’s governing body. Ensure that the committee structure supports the work of the board, not operating in place of the board. This includes the executive committee, which too often is used as a de facto board. 
Incorporate the "Twelve Principles of Governance that Empower Exceptional Boards" in building board culture. These principles focus on the process and context of governing (the how), which directly impact the outcomes of the governance tasks (the what). As board chair, your ability and commitment to apply these very tangible principles will help define your board culture. 
Inspire and empower board members to follow your lead in devoting time and effort to foster an effective board culture and value its importance. Each board member is accountable for his/her actions and has responsibility in constructing and nurturing the board culture as witnessed in their behaviors and attitudes. 
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