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Board Decision Papers

Board decision papers are written materials for board members in order to fulfill their oversight responsibilities and make well-informed decisions on corporate matters. They should be concise and informative and include a clear overview and annexes.

Directors can be guided to make the right choices through discussions on alternatives analysis and a review of the most important metrics and research findings and an operating framework that influenced their decision-making. They can also think about an exercise to assess the impact of the different options on the business. It’s also helpful to demonstrate how management made the decision to choose the best option – this could include explaining the various options or summarising pros/cons of each, and how the recommended method performed against the criteria.

Board papers should be free of jargon and legalese, with formal business writing style being used throughout to make the content relevant and easily accessible to all director. Charts and graphs can be used to organize information and trends, and also break up dense blocks of text. It is also a good practice to read the paper aloud or with your colleagues to ensure the primary messages are being communicated. If any further clarification is required, it’s ideal to invite questions, feedback or other perspectives from the board.

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