Starting March 2013 we will regularly publish book reviews on two areas which we believe may be of interest to Supervisory Directors (and Executives):
Today’s Supervisory Directors are not able anymore to fulfill their duties without an in-depth and thorough understanding of Corporate Governance.
The mere legal “do’s & don’ts” and accounting rules are necessary to understand (and to comply with!), but not sufficient. The modern Supervisory Director needs to understand strategy formulation, shaping alliances & joint-ventures, how to act as the independent director in a private equity owned company, which stakeholders to involve in decision processes and much more.
We will particularly focus on these areas, which are not so often addressed and at the same time are to a lesser extent restricted to local regulations in various jurisdictions. We will kick-off with a selection of the prescribed literature list for the Corporate Governance Programme of the Erasmus Unviversity and then will go into other directions.
As in many other areas, the path from “ignorance” to “authority” starts with regulations and rules. Many countries (and many directors as well) are not yet past this stage. The more advanced ones focus on really understanding the ins & outs of a business, risk modelling, mastering the art of asking the right questions and boardroom dynamics.
Yet, there is a next level which many are intuitively aware of but find it difficult to make concrete. This level is about ourselves, as a human being. It is about finding a balance within the triangle of “Ethical dilemmas”, “Giving meaning (to your own life)” and “Emotions”.
In difficult situations, when the issues and liability risks are huge, and the remuneration low, you may be struggling with the necessary decisions to be taken or even considering to step down. Along with the reputational damage for yourself and the company you serve. At this point, essentially it is about you, not the company. So, which sources do you possess? Your opinions about Ethics & Values, your personal Emotions & Feelings and how you have chosen to Give Meaning to Life. These three legs of the triangle need to be balanced. Call it wisdom, spirituality or intuition. If you understand yourself and are a master in “dealing with yourself” you will be able to guide your team in a calm, wise manner through the most devastating circumstances. That’s where real authority is reached. Not based on knowledge of facts, or being expert in the game of the survival of the fittest, but on who you are.
Our book reviews are intended to help you find your way through the jungle of publications. Hopefully these help you to embark on a very satisfying personally journey. And to become a better director….
Suggestions for new book reviews are always welcome!
If you would like to contribute your own book review to our website we will be happy to publish it, with full acknowledgement of you as the author.
Handboek voor de Participatiecommissaris (Guide for supervisory directors of private equity owned companies)
Mastering the Management System (Article in HBR: Strategy process from formulation to execution)
For those who really want to integrate spirituality in professional & private life:
Spiritual Psychology; The twelve primary life lessons (Give meaning to life; increase emotional stability)