Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
The chosen: how to become a competent director and create an effective board
Article Type: Abstracts From: Strategic Direction, Volume 24, Issue 8.
Coulson Thomas C. Management Services, Winter 2007, Vol. 51 No. 4, Start page: 33, No. of pages: 2
Purpose to discuss the qualities required to become a competent director and create an effective board. Design/methodology/approach makes the point that there is no standard or automatic path to directorship, and feels that direction should be seen as a separate but complementary activity to management, that the director’s perspective should be strategic rather than departmental, that direction is about providing leadership and being accountable at the level of the company as a whole, and that good managers do not always become effective directors. Considers qualities sought in directors in the nature of strategic awareness and personal qualities: business acumen and the ability to look ahead; and integrity, determination, independence, commitment, accountability and ethical awareness. Comments on the path of the directorial career, the fact that board performance that depends on the interaction of particular people and personalities in the boardroom context, the need for aspiring directors to understand the difference between a professional, a manager, an owner or shareholder and a director. Argues that an effective director must command the respect of colleagues, and that individuals with directorial ambitions should make them explicit in performance reviews and development plans. Suggests that multi-functional and business development experience, running a department as a profit centre and demonstrating contribution to the bottom line can all improve directorial prospects. Originality/value puts forward an argument that obtaining a seat on the board of a company requires more than being a good manager, and that an effective board requires more than an assembly of impressive individuals. ISSN: 03076768 Reference: 37AF323
Keywords: Career development, Directors, Managerial strategy