The issue you discuss is one
that will occur more and more as Policy Governance become more widely used,
not because of what Boards will do but the awareness of ownership by
individuals. This is especially true for membership organizations
where members are both members and owners.
Clearly what you do is a personal one, and
there no cut and dried answers, but Policy Governance changes the way you
might think about this issue. As an owner, you have as much right to
consider or speak to
Means as you do
Ends. This owner approach is
different than a customer approach. As a customer, you might be
willing to trade increased benefits for costs or inappropriate means.
Also as a customer you are more removed from the organization, having less
of a personal identification with it. The opposites are true as an
owner, unacceptable means can't be balanced by other means or increased
Ends and your identify is somewhat
attached to it. These aspects are more true for membership
organizations than those where the ownership is less connected.
The impact of this is that
if you wish to be an owner, the Ends
and Limitations on Means do make a
difference for you. As an owner, should you belong to an organization
that has established Limitations that are unacceptable to you? The
answer is no. This doesn't mean you should quit immediately, but
eventually if there is no change. Otherwise, your dues or
contributions are being used in your name to create a condition which is
unacceptable to you. The two important points are, first, the
unacceptable condition and, and second, being created in your name.
Certainly your thoughts
should be shared with your board, and if you have other opportunities for
input you should seek them. However, at some point if there is no
change you should resign as an owner. There may be other ways to stay
connected to the organization, such as a partnership where you have more
control over the relationship or simply as a customer where Ends
and Means have far less importance.
Lynn A. Walker, Ph.D.
Boundary Management Consulting
12411 McKelvey Road
St. Louis MO 63146-2929
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