Staffordshire North & Stoke on Trent CAB: Trustee Role Description


The board of trustees is collectively responsible for the governance of the bureau, including setting an overall vision. This can broadly be defined as:

  • holding staff accountable, and being ultimately accountable for the activities of the bureau
  • developing policy
  • strategic management.

Each trustee is accountable for all the decisions taken by the trustee board, including those taken if they are absent. Once the trustee board has reached a decision, all individual members of the board are bound by it and must support it. No one member or group of members (e.g. a committee) has the authority to take decisions or decide policy unless the board has clearly delegated authority to them.

Main duties and responsibilities

Each individual member of the trustee board has a responsibility to contribute to the discharging of the board’s duties. They can do this by:

  • maintaining an awareness of the business of the bureau
  • taking responsibility for his or her own learning and development
  • regularly attending, preparing for and taking a full part in meetings
  • actively contributing to setting policy and strategic direction, defining goals, setting targets and evaluating performance
  • monitoring whether the service complies with its governing document, whether it meets Citizens Advice standards and how well the advice needs of the local community are being met
  • monitoring the financial position of the bureau and ensuring that it operates within its means and objects, and that there are clear lines of accountability for day-to-day financial management
  • supporting the development of the bureau through participation in agreed projects
  • actively seeking to further the strategic objectives of the bureau, and acting in the best interests of the bureau at all times
  • maintaining confidentiality about any sensitive/confidential information received in the course of duties as a trustee.

Personal skills and qualities

Each individual member of the trustee board brings skills and qualities to the board. They add to the collective knowledge and experience by providing:

  • commitment and availability to attend bureau trustee board meetings
  • effective communication skills and willingness to participate actively in discussion
  • willingness to gain knowledge of local needs and resources
  • commitment to the aims, principles and policies of the CAB service, including those relating to equal opportunities, independence and social policy
  • willingness and ability to act in the best interests of the bureau
  • ability to understand and accept their responsibilities and liabilities as trustees and employers
  • willingness to participate in democratic process which develops CAB policies by area and nationally
  • numeracy to the extent required to understand CAB accounts with the support of a treasurer
  • willingness and ability to learn, and to develop and examine their own attitudes
  • ability to think creatively and strategically, and exercise good, independent judgement
  • ability to work effectively as a member of a team.

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