Governing from the Throne

Posted By: Admin, 06 Jun, 2012 - 03:26 am

As we recover from the street parties, supermarket offers, television programmes and countless references to the jubilee, we thought it would be well worth taking a reflective look at the example set for us by Her Majesty the Queen who has celebrated sixty years on the throne this week...

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Equality and Diversity and the Board...

Posted By: Admin, 13 Feb, 2013 - 02:22 pm

Ash dieback threatens the survival of the Ash tree in the UK – and the flora and fora that depend on it. Listening to the Today programme I learned that the British Ash is more limited in its genetic diversity than Ash elsewhere in Europe, weakening its chances of survival. As the Forestry Commission comments: “the single best strategy (to improve resilience) is to increase the genetic and age diversity of your woodland”.

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The Cosmopolitan Problem

Posted By: Admin, 02 Apr, 2013 - 04:43 am

 

With the deal breaking down between Riverside and the troubled Cosmopolitan Housing, it does beg the question about how regulation works when a large association gets into difficulty. The issue at stake in this case was to do with obligations under student accommodation arrangements that Cosmopolitan built up over a number of years when the economic conditions were more favourable. However, last summer the 14,000-home landlord faced significant cash-flow problems, bringing it close to breaching lending agreements after difficulties around the financing of its student housing initiative came to light.

 

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Know Thyself

Posted By: Admin, 02 Apr, 2013 - 09:21 am

 

Although the words "know thyself" are commonly attributed to Socrates, knowledge of self is what the sages of old, a long time before Socrates, described as the beginning of knowledge. True wisdom, it is said, comes from a knowledge of self.

I have been working recently with a number of boards on what can be defined as a High Performing Board and how to make the transition from being a good board to being a great board. As the UK Corporate Governance Code and many other frameworks for that matter suggest, boards should carry out a robust, self evaluation of their performance on a regular basis.

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Having a Stake- Student Spotlight

Posted By: Admin, 14 Jun, 2013 - 02:41 pm

The idea of stakeholders comes from economic theory about the nature of the organization.

Originally, the idea was that the purpose of the organization was simply to make as much profit as possible. The owners of the company appoint the directors to do that and in doing so the owners incur costs (e.g. paying the directors) so it’s called “agency theory”. That idea comes from a time when owners could ignore the interest of people connected with the company such as the employees and the community. So academics started thinking about other ways of thinking about the company.

 

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Governance Goes Social

Posted By: Admin, 14 Jun, 2013 - 03:33 pm

You can’t escape from the compelling arguments for the organisation’s utilisation of social media. The press continues to highlight the success of organisations utilising social media for “taking the pulse” of the market. However, mistakes and missteps by organisations are highly visible, and the impact of viral attention in this area is widely known.



 

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Governance is More Than Mere Compliance- Student Spotlight

Posted By: Admin, 14 Jun, 2013 - 03:37 pm

Corporate governance is often presented as an issue of compliance - compliance with Codes and Standards, with regulators and of course with the law. Compliance is, of course, an important component of governance but it isn’t the whole story. The real way to think about governance is that it’s a relationship. It’s the relationship between the people who run the organisation and the people on whose behalf the organisation is run.

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How the Codes have Developed- Student Spotlight

Posted By: Admin, 25 Oct, 2013 - 09:05 am

An important part of understanding corporate governance comes from having a knowledge of the various codes that seek to provide guidance on good governance practice. These codes have developed over the last twenty-five years.

In 1992 Cadbury Report was developed in response to a number of scandals that highlighted lack of confidence in financial reporting. It introduced the concept of “comply or explain” and promoted the role of non-executive directors on the audit committee. 

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Comply or Explain - Student Spotlight

Posted By: Admin, 18 Feb, 2014 - 01:13 pm

In the last student note we saw that governance has evolved through the development of a whole series of codes using the idea of “comply or explain”. We’ve also seen that governance is more than compliance and that since it’s a relationship with the organisations stakeholders it’s really about decisions that the board takes about how it wants to run its organisation.

However, compliance is important. Directors and trustees don’t just have “comply or explain why they don’t comply” with the corporate governance code for their sector. They must comply with the law.

For companies, the 2006 Companies Act sets out seven duties of directors:

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The Buck Stops Here!

Posted By: Admin, 01 Jun, 2011 - 03:33 pm

The Buck Stops here! There is an old saying that you are only as good as the people around you.

It’s a maxim to which I readily subscribe, yet – as a business leader – I need to ensure I have taken every precaution to protect the good name of the organisation I serve.

I was at a governors’ meeting recently at a local school in Birmingham and we were discussing the forthcoming school inspection...

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Fifa's Reputation Damaged by Bribery Allegations

Posted By: Admin, 16 May, 2011 - 11:45 pm

Last week, the former chairman of England's Football Association, Lord Triesman, accused Nicolas Leoz, Jack Warner and two other Fifa executives of seeking 'bribes' in return for backing England's bid to host the 2018 World Cup finals.

Triesman claims Leoz (pictured), president of the South American Football Confederation, requested a knighthood, while Warner, president of the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football, asked for cash to buy TV rights and build an education centre.

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Diversity on the Board: New Approach is Long Overdue

Posted By: Admin, 17 May, 2011 - 12:25 am

Earlier this month, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) announced plans to launch a consultation on how to increase the number of female directors.

A report released in February by Lord Davies of Abersoch for the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills found women account for around 13% of directors sitting on FTSE 100 company boards, with that figure falling to a paltry 8% in the FTSE 250.

To redress the gender imbalance, Davies suggests chairmen set a voluntary target of 25% of women in the boardroom by 2015.

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Boards Can Be Your Best Asset During a Recession

Posted By: Admin, 28 May, 2011 - 01:54 am

Does having a carefully selected board of directors and a good governance protocol really make a difference to the performance of a social enterprise?

In the current economic climate, good governance and an effective board is crucial to the survival of a social enterprise.

This may not be immediately apparent, particularly where a social enterprise has been operating successfully for a number of years without any real attention to good governance.

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Non Negotiable Assets: Transparency and Disclosure

Posted By: Admin, 29 May, 2011 - 12:09 am

The furore surrounding the conduct of the former head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Dominique Strauss-Kahn and ex-Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) chief executive Sir Fred Goodwin suggests issues such as transparency and disclosure are becoming increasingly important.

Earlier this month, Strauss-Kahn (pictured) faced two seemingly unrelated accusations of sexual assault, and a few days later, Goodwin was revealed to have obtained a ‘super injunction’, allegedly to prevent details of an extra-marital affair with a senior colleague being made public.

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Cable's Review of Finance Markets is an Inspired Move

Posted By: Admin, 06 Jul, 2011 - 07:28 pm

Business Secretary Vince Cable recently announced an independent review of the UK's equity markets to put an end to a culture 'where we reward failure' and investigate how companies are established and maintained.

The review will be led by economist Professor John Kay, who will release an interim report later this year and his final conclusions in 2012.

Speaking in London last month at the Association of British Insurers’ Biennial Conference, Cable said the review would look at the long-term performance of fund managers, pension advisers, pension funds and companies that handle savings and investments.

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Read our ACGP Blog for the latest information and opinion relevant to Governance Practitioners. From the shifting governance climate, to updates in public policy, we will keep you updated right here. If you are an ACGP member and have a suggestion for a blog article, get in touch with us.