Why was the report into British Judo’s governance commissioned?

In May 2016, the UK Government published a Charter for Sports Governance in the UK which set out some key governance principles that they expect all sports in the UK to follow.

As a result of this, the British Judo Association (BJA) recognised the need to review its governance of the sport more generally than we explained in our recently published Strategic Plan for 2017-2021. A further trigger for this action was also as a result of the circumstances surrounding the unfortunate withdrawal of the 2015 European Judo Championships in February 2015 and the governance issues arising from the review.

We want to ensure that we meet the governance demands laid out by the new Charter and adhere to the very best practices with regards our ways of working across all aspects of the organisation. So in order to achieve this, we utilised the experience and expertise of independent expert Jonathan Hall to audit, review and share his findings and recommendations of our current structures and working practices.

Who is Jonathan Hall?

Jonathan Hall is a sports governance expert. He was formally a member of the senior management team at The FA and now advises national governing bodies and international sports federations across the world on governance and sports administration projects.

What is the process and timescales to make the changes as recommended by the report?

The eight-stage process of the review project, that began with commissioning the report and is completed when the agreed changes are implemented, can be seen on page 3 of the review summary document.

With the report now completed and its subsequent distribution to members alongside the launch of the microsite, we are now at stage 5, the ‘membership consultation period’.

The consultation and interaction with members will be through the 13 regional roadshow meetings, the blog and interactive form, so if you have any questions either before or after a regional meeting, or you are unable to attend the meeting, please use the form on the homepage of the microsite and we will ensure we respond as promptly as we can.

The review will only be complete when all the recommendations have been successfully implemented, but the agreement to accept all 40 recommendations at the EGM in March (stage 7 of 8) will be the major step towards achieving our original aims when we commissioned the report in the summer.

How can I see a full copy of the report?

You can download a full copy of the report by clicking here.

Is the BJA proposing to make all the recommended changes?

Yes. There are 40 recommendations and having sought the expertise of an independent consultant, we are proposing to accept all of his recommendations at the EGM in March. We believe that when implemented, the recommendations will create a series of positive outcomes for the BJA and how it operates at Board and executive team levels, as well as how we work with and communicate to our members. This can only be accomplished if we receive the consensus of the members when voting on the changes at the EGM.

If I have a question how can I share this with British Judo?

The best way to ask a question is to attend one of the meetings. We are running 13 regional roadshow meetings throughout January and February, followed by the EGM in March. If you can’t attend a meeting but would like to post a question please use the new online form on the homepage of the microsite.

Do I have to be a member to attend a regional roadshow?

No. The meetings are open to everyone. While we appreciate most attendees are likely to be members, anyone that wishes to attend can do so and you don’t need to book your place. The details for all the meetings will be updated on the microsite, the blog, as well as sent out in emails.

If all the changes are implemented what changes will I see as a member of British Judo?

We are confident you will see a number of positive changes in the operations of the BJA. We want our Board to be more representative and have clear decision making structures and areas of responsibility. We want our executive team to work well with the board based on agreed delegated roles and responsibilities, and we want to ensure we better communicate and interact with our members and have a far greater two-way conversation.

We believe that the audit, review and feedback process has already helped us to look at how we communicate with our members and the governance review project itself is a great example of the BJA’s determination to be more open and proactive in its communications with members. In the future we need to do even more, and so we will be launching a new intranet for members only in 2017 as another way to better communicate more targeted information for members based on different roles e.g. players, elite players, coaches, club administrators, officials, parents etc.

The review highlighted a number of areas in which we can improve and we are determined to do so, but some of the changes as recommended will require a change to the rules of the Association, its Memorandum and Articles of Association and so to provide the framework to allow some of these changes to happen we will need to pass these resolutions at the EGM.