Focus: Finance and Governance - Trustee talk - Usman Khan - Turning Point

I was a trustee at Turning Point for two years, before becoming its chair after a rigorous selection process.

I would like to think I was chosen because of my 20 years of experience in the public sector, including four years as chairman of the Camden and Islington Community NHS Trust, at the time one of the largest in the country.

I also hope to bring my experience of the private sector to Turning Point - I'm a director of a public services consultancy. You can take the best of all the sectors to develop the third sector.

At the moment, the third sector and the public sector need a trading post - there is a basic language, but they only have a pidgin English exchange. They're not really communicating.

Internally, there are challenges for me and the board. The primary one is to develop an organisation capable of sustained growth, without losing our essence as a voluntary sector provider. The landscape of public services is changing hugely with the notion of contestability. Provision of health and social care services is undergoing its most significant period of change since the establishment of the NHS in 1948. The sector should be making a case about which areas it should be delivering.

Turning Point will need to prepare for meaningful engagement in shaping the agenda and as a credible provider of services.

In terms of charity governance, greater transparency and professionalism is important. Turning Point has made significant strides towards professionalising the recruitment and support of its trustees and committee members. You also need to ensure your board represents the wider society. We think we succeed on ethnic minority representation - Turning Point is one of few voluntary bodies where both the chair and chief executive come from BME groups.

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