Trust and Betrayal in the Board/Manager Relationship

Trust and Betrayal in the Board/Manager Relationship

  |  January 2, 2022

Cooperatives succeed when both management and board members sustain clear and consistent communication, especially regarding policies and expectations. Any fractures in this relationship can lead to an unstable environment. When something happens that breaks that trust, how do you move forward? How can you build, repair, and maintain trust?  A new online workshop, Trust and Betrayal in the Board/Manager Relationship, delves into the ways boards and general managers can build and repair trust.

This training, scheduled for January 10, will seek to give participants the tools to tackle these difficult issues. The workshop is highly relevant for all co-op leaders, even those not currently dealing with issues of betrayal or mistrust, as it will provide strategies to help deepen trust and identify pitfalls to avoid.

The facilitators for this workshop, Trust and Betrayal in the Board/Manager Relationship, are the following Columinate consultants:

  • Carolee Colter, Human Resources Consultant for Managers & Boards

  • Mark Mulcahy, Regenerative Retail Specialist

  • Todd Wallace, Thinking Partner / Facilitator / Governance Consultant

Each of the facilitators has experience working closely with boards and managers to support them to be effective in their roles. We spoke with Carolee Colter about the training and what participants can expect to take away from attending.

Tell us about this new training on trust and betrayal.

This year’s Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Maria Ressa said, “Trust is what holds us together to be able to solve complex problems our world is facing today.”

This training is part of a series we’re developing on the board/GM relationship. At CCMA in 2021, we delivered a session on creating a community of collective care between boards and managers to avoid burnout and the loss of valuable leaders. In the fall of 2022, we will present a CBLD training on productively managing board/manager conflict. This training on trust is part of this series.

The training will be highly interactive, giving participants the chance to interact and engage with each other in reflecting on the ideas we’re presenting.

What can participants expect to learn from the session?

I used to subscribe to the belief that once trust is broken, it can never be restored. But that’s only a story we tell ourselves. In reality, if there is the will to repair a breach of trust, there are practical steps that the people involved can take. We’re going to present those steps in our online seminar.

We’ll also share a taxonomy of trust based on the work of Dennis Reina and Michelle Reina: trust of character, trust of communication, and trust of capability. It helps to understand which type of trust you are struggling with in order to strengthen or restore it.

Why host a session about trust and betrayal?

The relationship between the board and the general manager is the most important relationship in the co-op. If that relationship is strong and trusting, the board and manager can face daunting challenges together and find ways to navigate them. If the relationship is not strong and healthy, or if it’s weakened by mistrust, their co-op can’t thrive. The critical functions of management and governance will be working at cross-purposes.

Trust and Betrayal in Board/Manager Relationship

Read the event-follow up here. 

The training is free to all CBLD participants, and $50 for non-CBLD members.


Have more questions?

Get in touch with one of our consultants.

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