Become Chair of the Opus ‘Head’ board (Deadline: 17th Sept 2021)

Opus Independents Ltd is looking for an organised, committed individual to take up the voluntary position of Chair of its ‘Head’ board.

The purpose of this role is to lead the Head board in its oversight of the company’s project work, including scrutiny of finances and strategic direction.

This means making sure the board is meeting regularly, working effectively in and between meetings, and asking the right questions of company members and directors to ensure high legal and ethical standards are met.

More information about the three boards at Opus.

Role in brief

  • Job title – Chair of the ‘Head’ board at Opus Independents Ltd
  • Salary: Voluntary position. Reasonable travel and subsistence expenses reimbursed.
  • Hours: 1-1.5 days per month (approx 7-11 hours per month)
  • Key Tasks: Coordinating board meetings, compiling agendas, following up agreed actions, liaising with ‘Hand’ and ‘Heart’ boards, and Opus Directors.
  • Responsible for: Members of the ‘Head’ board.
  • Responsible to: All Opus members – Head, Hand and Heart.

Deadline for Expressions of Interest

Please email an Expression of Interest – no more than 500 words detailing your experience, why you’re interested and why you think you are well suited for the role – to info@weareopus.org by Friday 17th September.

Tasks

Core tasks associated with this voluntary position will include:

  • scheduling regular meetings, taking into account board members’ availability.
  • compiling agenda points from members and directors, allocating time during meetings for related discussions, and ensuring members have any relevant reading material at least a week before each meeting.
  • chairing meetings, to make sure they take place in a timely and orderly manner, that every voice is heard and that the most important questions are asked.
  • following up with actions taken on by board members, so that work is not missed and commitments are met.
  • arranging, and being part of, occasional meetings which fall outside regular Head board meetings – for example, any task-oriented working groups falling within the board’s remit.
  • working with members of the company’s Hand and Heart boards, and its Directors, to make sure all three boards are joined-up and ‘on the same page’.

Detail & Remit of Board

In ‘normal’ times the Head board meets every three months. Due to the uncertainties facing the business during the pandemic, at present the board is meeting roughly every 4-6 weeks.

The Chair of the Head board will become a member of the board, and of Opus Independents itself. Being part of the Head Board involves:

  • Attending regular board meetings, plus the Opus AGM.
  • Advocating for Opus to external organisations and helping the company form new strategic partnerships.
  • Maintaining a good working knowledge of the organisation by attending its events and keeping up to speed with its output.
  • Meeting other Head Board members outside quarterly meetings as part of a working group formed around a specific area of work (where appropriate).

Being a member of the Head Board is:

  • A voluntary position, although reasonable expenses will be reimbursed.
  • A legal responsibility, in that all members are joint owners of the company but not a director or registered on Companies House.

Background Information

What is Opus?

Opus is a not-for-profit social enterprise working in culture, politics and the arts to support ‘upstream’ solutions to social, political, economic and environmental concerns.

We create platforms for independent information and communication which amplify voices within the local economy, voluntary, community and campaign sectors. We support active citizenship and community participation.

Our core projects are Now Then Magazine, the Now Then App, Festival of Debate, Wordlife, Opus Distribution and UBI Lab Network.

Opus believes we can live in a place where everyone works to make things better for each other. ‘Better’ to us means fair, diverse, accessible, independent and heard.

We work with a cross-section of independent, community and voluntary sector organisations whilst directly reaching over 150,000 people a year through live events, broadcasting and publishing in Sheffield and beyond.

We are passionate about supporting ‘upstream’ solutions to social, political, economic and environmental concerns. We recognise that this is a long-term and systemic approach to social change — that’s why we create platforms which champion social causes, independent businesses, not-for-profits, emerging talent, active citizenship and community participation.

What is the Head board?

The Head Board is a technical board which supports the work of Opus through its collective knowledge and experience, as well as scrutinising business decisions, taking a balanced and responsible view of finances, ensuring that Opus directors have carried out due diligence and supporting the company’s strategic aims by making connections with new partners, collaborators and clients.

Through its interactions with the Hand and Heart Boards – which are responsible for maintaining day-to-day operations and upholding the company’s core values, respectively – the Head Board is a crucial element of the company’s governance, providing a counter-balance to the other boards through its informed scrutiny and constructive critique.

The remit of the Head Board is ultimately to ensure that Opus is being run responsibly – that due diligence is met in all key decisions, that financial responsibility is maintained, and that strategic opportunities and threats are not overlooked.

Areas for discussion at Head Board meetings may include, but will not be limited to:

  • Finance
  • Human resources and staff management
  • Fundraising and commercial sales
  • Legal
  • Marketing and PR
  • Strategic planning and new projects
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