News & Insights

I am a visual learner. I'm glad my daughter is a visual learner, too. When I finally figure out how to do her math homework, I might be able to explain it in a way that makes sense to the both of us.

Visual learning can take place in governance too. For example, In Trust has written quite a bit about the value of dashboards for governance. Dashboard is a good metaphor — very visual — and many schools have taken the idea to heart, creating systems that gather critical information in one place so that seminary leaders can quickly assess the health of their school.

The dashboard of a car can tell you a lot — fuel level, speed, air temperature, tire pressure. The one thing it can’t tell you is where you’re going. For that we need another metaphor. Randall Basinger, provost at Messiah College, has just the thing: GPS, or governance positioning system.

In an article that appeared in the Spring 2012 issue of In Trust, “A clearer view,” Basinger imagined for us a digital tool for “guiding the faculty, president, and board through the apparent morass called shared governance.” This gadget would not only walk someone through the process of seeing certain projects from start to finish, but it might even prioritize tasks by deadlines and complexity.

Alas, no spry young start-up genius has jumped on the idea since Basinger proposed it in the pages of In Trust. But no matter — he offered an elegant solution: a color-coded governance diagram. It looks a lot like an org chart, with a focus on offices and roles.

I can imagine myself using such a tool, preferably laminated. Then with a dry erase marker, I could easily map out a course to illustrate the route a certain strategy needs to follow to be implemented. In particular, Basinger found it useful to help members of the board’s Education Committee see how decisions move through the corridors of governance.

Click on the image for a PDF of the visual, and read the article for more on how to use this handy tool.

Top Topics

Roles & Responsibilities



Board Essentials

Upcoming Events

The In Trust Center hosts learning community spaces throughout the year. Check out our upcoming events below.

Strategic Partnerhips


In this on-demand webinar, Rick Staisloff, senior partner of rpk GROUP, will discuss essential aspects of strategic partnerships. He will explore current trends, identify partners, navigate the due diligence process, and addresses common challenges. In addition to technical components of partnerships, he will also examine the intangible – yet critical – elements of partnerships, such as building trust and managing relationships.

Closing the Trust Gap


The current and very troubling condition of trust is a clarion call to action. But despite the dismal data showing pervasive organizational distrust, every organization can assess their current level of trust, learn and adopt a proven trust building framework, and then develop a meaningful and long-lasting plan of action. This webinar details the knowledge and practical next steps to strengthen workplace culture as a result of closing the trust gap.

In Trust Center Resource Grants


An In Trust Center Resource Grant offers member schools a chance to explore innovation at their institutions through a matching grant opportunity of up to $15,000. Listen to this 30-minute information session, including Q&A, as we provide details on eligibility requirements, funding priorities, application process. Previous grantees are eligible to apply as long as they are not within our current funding cycle.

Can’t Find What You’re Looking For?

In Trust Center provides Resource Consulting to our members at no charge. Contact us today and let us guide you to the most helpful resources for your situation.

Contact Us