Les devoirs des administrateurs eu égard à un climat de travail malsain | Un cas pratique

Voici un cas de gouvernance publié sur le site de Julie Garland McLellan* qui illustre les contradictions entre les valeurs énoncées par une école privée et celles qui semblent animer les administrateurs et les parents.

Le cas montre comment un administrateur, nouvellement élu sur un CA d’une école privée, peut se retrouver dans une situation embarrassante impliquant des comportements de harcèlement et de menaces qui affectent la santé mentale et le bien-être des employés.

Cette situation semble se présenter de plus en plus fréquemment dans les institutions d’enseignement qui visent des rendements très (trop !) élevés.

Comment Ignacio peut-il s’y prendre pour bien faire comprendre aux administrateurs de son CA leurs devoirs et leurs obligations légales d’assurer un climat de travail sain, absent d’agression de la part de certains parents ?

Le cas présente, de façon claire, une situation de culture organisationnelle déficiente ; puis, trois experts en gouvernance se prononcent sur le dilemme qui se présente aux administrateurs qui vivent des expériences similaires.

Bonne lecture ! Vos commentaires sont toujours les bienvenus.


Un cas culture organisationnelle déficiente !




Ignacio is an old boy of a private school with a proud sporting tradition. He was invited onto the board last year when a long-serving director retired. The school is well run with a professional principal who has the respect of the staff as well as many of the boys.

The school has worked hard to develop academic excellence and its place in rankings has improved with a greater percentage of boys qualifying for university.

At the last board meeting the CEO was absent. The chairman explained that he had taken stress leave because he couldn’t cope with bullying from some of the parents. Some directors sniggered and the rest looked embarrassed. There were a few comments about ‘needing to grow a backbone’, ‘being a pansy’, and ‘not having the guts to stand up to parents or lead the teams to victory on the field’.

Ignacio was aghast – he asked about the anti-harassment and workplace health and safety policies and was given leave by the chair « to look into ‘covering our backs’ if necessary ».

Ignacio met with the HR manager and discovered the policies were out of date and appeared to have been cut and pasted from the original Department of Education advice without customisation. From his experience running a business Ignacio is aware of the importance of mental health issues in the modern workplace and also of the legal duty of directors to provide a workplace free from bullying and harassment. School staff are all aware of a discrepancy between the stated School values and those of the board and some parents. The HR manager tells him that recent bullying by parents has become more akin to verbal and even physical assault. Staff believe the board will not support them against fee paying parents even though the school is, in theory, a not-for-profit institution.

How can Ignacio help lead his board to an understanding of their duty to provide a safe workplace?


Chris’s Answer  …..


Julie’s Answer ….


Leanne’s Answer ….

*Julie Garland McLellan is a practising non-executive director and board consultant based in Sydney, Australia.


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