Composition, Skills and Attributes

To develop continuously the skills and knowledge required to govern effectively, our Board follows a board competency model. This allows them to set the competencies needed based on what members believe are important skills, attitudes and knowledge to have in order to meet future challenges. This supports the Board to develop an effective process that attracts those who have the skills and knowledge that are essential to the success of the Board and their oversight role.

The following are the competencies, skills and attributes that the Board, as a whole, seeks to encompass. Not every Board member is required to possess all of the competencies, skills or attributes, nor does the Board seek to have each competency, skill or attribute represented equally. The goal of the Board is to achieve balance and reflect diversity in its composition.


1.  Public Orientation: The Board governs in the public interest. 

Board members demonstrate this competency by: 

  • Contributing to the development of policies that are in the public interest 
  • Connecting with the public to understand the range of public perspectives 
  • Seeking to be more knowledgeable about key issues affecting the public 
  • Becoming familiar with the expectations, priorities and values of the public and other stakeholders relating to nursing regulation 

2.  Accountability: The Board is accountable to govern in the public interest to meet the Board’s legal and fiduciary responsibilities. 

Board members demonstrate this competency by: 

  • Being transparent in decision making 
  • Seeking necessary knowledge to fully understand self-regulation, governance and the role of the Board 
  • Participating in Board governance by being prepared for meetings, asking meaningful questions and fully debating issues 
  • Engaging in performance evaluation of self, the Board and CEO 
  • Interacting in a manner that is reflective of the NSCN values 

3. Leadership: The Board provides leadership by building relationships within the community and broader healthcare system and seeking to create positive regulatory change in the public interest. 

Board members demonstrate this competency by: 

  • Fostering collaborative relationships within the Board, public, stakeholders and staff 
  • Promoting teamwork through consensus building and conflict resolution 
  • Respecting and honouring Board decisions 
  • Mentoring and coaching new Board members 
  • Embracing diversity and inclusion 
  • Encompassing integrity and professionalism 

4. Analytical Thinking: The Board addresses matters analytically from a broad systems and strategic perspective in the public interest. 

Board members demonstrate this competency by: 

  • Asking questions to determine the root cause of an issue 
  • Transitioning complex issues into single and manageable components 
  • Logically analyzing the information required to determine potential solutions 
  • Actively seeking and considering differences of opinion 
  • Contributing to decision making based on evidence and experience; setting priorities and determining the strategic direction in the public interest through performance measurement 

5. Innovative: The Board stimulates new ideas and facilitates continuous improvement that is innovative, visionary and future-focused in the public interest. 

Board members demonstrate this competency by: 

  • Understanding the trends that are influencing change in nursing and the healthcare system, including self-regulation 
  • Proactively assisting to shape the vision, future direction and positioning of NSCN for long term success 


  1. Governance: Experience working with a governance model (including but not limited to policy governance) to direct the actions and processes of the organization’s board of directors. Experience on other boards. 
  2. Finance: Experience working with financial principles and managing decisions related to budgets. 
  3. Risk Assessment & Management: Experience using principles of risk assessment and management as they relate to governance of an organization 
  4. Legal: Experience working with relevant legislation, legal frameworks and procedures relevant to Board policies, protocols and rules 
  5. Strategic Planning: Experience with strategic planning including setting of purpose, mission, vision and values for the board and/or organization 
  6. Performance Management: Experience with evaluation and performance management for the Board, Board members and CEO 
  7. Cultural Competence: Experience with and ability to understand, communicate and effectively interact with people across cultures. This may include working with diverse communities 


  1. Nursing Designation: Registrant of NSCN as either an LPN, RN and/or NP. 
  2. Domain of Nursing Practice: Direct care, Education, Policy, Administration/Management, Research 
  3. Regional Location: Your location in the province as defined by your primary home address 
  4. Diversity: Reflects the population of Nova Scotia.