College’’s work on Group Board Development Centre praised

The College has received a ringing endorsement from The Co-operative Group’’s Values & Principles Board for its work on the Group Board Development Centre (GBDC) which provides elected member development, especially at Board level.

Joan Keysell, Member Learning Manager at The Co-operative Group, who worked alongside the College to develop and implement a bespoke GBDC supporting the transition between Regional Boards and Group Board, gave high praise for the College’s work. She said: ““Our partnership with the College has been instrumental in developing and embedding the GBDC. The quality of the mentoring support and professionalism we have received has been, and continues to be, essential to the quality of the experience for our elected members.””

Any members of Regional Boards and Independent Societies who aspire to be elected to the Group Board must go through the GBDC process, as well as existing Group Board members seeking re-election. Members collect and present a portfolio of evidence derived from their committee experience and relevant co-operative studies and assignments to demonstrate that they have the competencies and have met the minimum standards required to serve on the Group. The process was designed to satisfy the membership that those governing the Society have the appropriate knowledge and skills to provide a strategic vision for The Co-operative Group. As well as being able to demonstrate analytical skills, strategic understanding, in-depth business knowledge, financial decision-making skills and knowledge of the legal framework in which the Directors operate, members must show understanding and empathy with the co-operative values and principles and the Group’s stakeholders. It is also a way for members to identify and work on their developmental needs.

Joan Keysell commented: “”The GBDC is a brave and innovative, supportive way of assessing competence. It has been an absolute pleasure and inspiration to work closely with you on the GBDC and I am delighted that you have been so enthusiastic to continue to do so.”

The GBDC can also be adapted for other co-operatives of all types and sizes. For more information email

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