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In November 2012, the Board appointed Steven McTiernan, the Senior Independent Director, to undertake the evaluation. The appointment reflected the importance attached by Simon Thompson to obtaining frank and honest feedback on his performance at the end of his first year as Chairman. Mr McTiernan conducted a review of the Board and each of its Committees by means of a questionnaire (broadly similar to the one used in 2011) and structured interviews. The results were summarised in a report, discussed at the Board and an action plan agreed. Separately, Simon Thompson had interviews with each member of the Board to give feedback on their individual performance and to agree personal development plans for the coming year.
In summary, the evaluation showed that the Board continue to make good progress in improving the effectiveness of their discussions, the atmosphere remains collegiate but appropriately challenging, and the Board are achieving a better balance between monitoring past performance and debating the future direction of the business. The results of this evaluation are reflected in the Board Objectives for 2013, which detail the action plan and priorities agreed by all the Directors.