Words from the wise (heard at a Director Workshop where subject matter experts shared their throughts on governance):

Directors are extremely reliant on the honesty of their CEO. Choose him or her wisely. This is the most important job of the board.
Don Brash - Former Governor of the Reserve Bank of NZ

Good news is written succinctly. Bad news is wordsmithed.
Prof Jens Mueller - Waikato Management School

If executives are continually involved in board meetings there is a “Death Star” gravitational pull to operational matters.
Sandy Maier - Professional Director

Your directors should not be friends, their friends or accountants and lawyers (too risk focussed). Your board should reflect your customers.
Don Jaine - Partner at Seqel Partners

Set aside blue skies thinking time at board meetings at least once a quarter.
Prof Gregor Coster - Chairman CMDHB

Beware of joining a board with ‘founder’s disease’. Protective and passionate, it’s their baby and only they know what is best for it.
Greg Cross - Chairman at Icehouse

Sustainability, to be truly successful, requires authenticity. Consumers see through ‘greenwash’.
Phil O’Reilly - CEO Business NZ

New Zealand needs less financial regulation and more financial literacy. Education is key.
Bruce Sheppard - Chair of NZ Shareholders Assn

Now is the time to re-read your loan and OD banking covenants. Ask your bank where you are in their risk chain.
Sam Shuttleworth - Partner at PWC

As a shareholder remember 75% is key. Parting with more than 25% equity means you have lost effective control of your company.
Shelly Cave - Partner at Simpson Grierson

Good Governance is based on:

  • Passion for Performance
  • Ethical Behaviour
  • Confidentiality
  • Transparency
  • Respect

Opinion Poll

It is often said that securing your first board appointment is the hardest unless you are part of the so called ‘Old Boys Network”. From your experience would you say the ‘Old Boys Network’ is? See the results here.