How to Get Yourself on a Board: Get Board Interviews

By |2021-09-10T12:36:41-04:00August 20th, 2020|Blogs|

In recent years, businesses have begun to realize that gender diversity on boards makes a big difference. For example, one study of 6,000 boards found that gender-balanced boards are less likely to have financial irregularities because having different viewpoints and opinions leads to increased effectiveness. Women Get On Board’s mandate is to connect, promote, and empower women to corporate boards. We do this through an engaged community of women and men in Canada committed to advancing gender diversity in the boardroom. However, as I wrote in my blog post called “Are You Board-Ready”, “getting yourself board-ready is a journey where you need to be realistic in your skills, experience and value you bring to a board. You also need to be mindful that it is a very competitive marketplace. There is an over-supply of qualified corporate directors for a limited supply of available corporate board seats.” That’s why I am sharing my advice in my 4-part blog series, How to Get Yourself on a Board. My previous blog posts in this series covered how to “Master the [...]

How to Get Yourself on a Board: Position Your Board Offer

By |2021-09-10T12:36:48-04:00August 4th, 2020|Blogs|

According to an Osler research report called “2019 Diversity Disclosure Practices: Women in leadership roles at TSX-listed companies”, “Women now hold over 18.1% of board seats among companies disclosing the number of women on their boards, the highest proportion yet and a 50% increase compared to 2015 (when it was 12%).” That’s why Women Get on Board’s mandate it to connect, promote, and empower women to corporate boards. To help more women on their board journey, I have launched a 4-part blog series called How to Get Yourself on Board. If you read the first post of the series, you’ve mastered board basics. With this foundation, you’re ready for the next step in your board journey. The second blog in this series is all about how to position your board offer and it will provide practical insights on how to: 1. Assess your board readiness 2. Identify the right board for you 3. Create your board value proposition 4. Build your board resume and LinkedIn profile 1. Assess your board readiness In order to prepare for your first corporate [...]

How to Get Yourself on a Board: Master the Foundations

By |2021-09-10T12:36:54-04:00August 4th, 2020|Blogs|

Serving on a board can be an incredibly rewarding experience—and it’s one of the best ways to advance your career. Board service has both personal and professional benefits, including opportunities to: Build your network and personal brand Give back to organizations with meaningful missions Learn different perspectives that can be applied to your existing roles Get sponsored for governance education programs (e.g., ICD.D, C.Dir or CDI.D) Develop governance leadership skills Get access to new knowledge, skills, perspectives, management styles, corporate cultures, business models, mentors, and connections As you can see, serving on a board is a meaningful way to build your career and enrich your network. However, securing a coveted board position is not an easy task. That’s why Women Get On Board’s mandate is to connect, promote, and empower women to corporate boards. It’s also why I’m launching a new 4-part blog series called How to Get Yourself on a Board. My first blog in this series is called Master the Foundations and it will provide you with practical insights on how to: Recognize there are different types of boards Identify [...]

Emotional Intelligence in the Boardroom

By |2021-09-10T12:37:04-04:00October 18th, 2019|Blogs|

I am celebrating my 20th year of serving on corporate boards and have learned it is not so much what you know, but rather how you say it. I have had to train my sense of emotional intelligence (EI) at the boardroom table – including paying attention to everything from verbal communication, to body language, tone of voice, and social graces. I have been around some of the best and brightest board members that have inspired me to reach higher levels in the boardroom. I have also been around other board members that lacked in their EI, with their social graces lacking and boardroom presence very uninspiring. According to Daniel Goleman, an American psychologist who popularized the concept of EI, its definition is: “the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, and those of the people around you. People with a high degree of emotional intelligence know what they're feeling, what their emotions mean, and how these emotions can affect other people.” Goleman also organized Emotional Intelligence into five key elements: 1. Self-awareness 2. Self-regulation 3. [...]

Financial Intelligence in the Boardroom

By |2021-09-10T12:37:35-04:00July 25th, 2019|Blogs|

Every board member has a role in financial oversight. Even if you don’t have financial expertise, you are still expected to maintain an adequate level of financial intelligence. This means that you need to have an understanding of the fundamental concepts, conventions and principles underlying financial statements. Top 5 tips to help you boost your level of financial intelligence in the boardroom: 1. Develop a plan and begin the work. Start by reviewing the annual filings of TSX listed companies that you are interested in or work for. 2. Seek out a mentor or someone who has financial expertise. Ask someone you know that has financial expertise if you can spend time with them over the next 12 months, transferring knowledge and helping you understand core financial concepts. 3. Understand the basic financial concepts/principles and how to look at financial statements. CPA Canada has great document you can refer to: https://www.cpacanada.ca/en/business-and-accounting-resources/financial-and-non-financial-reporting/international-financial-reporting-standards-ifrs/publications/reading-financial-statements-what-do-i-need-to-know-faq 4. Do your financial due diligence before joining a corporate board. Review the annual audited financial statements, quarterly financials, Management, Discussion & Analysis (MD&A) and fore-casts/budgets to understand the [...]

Ethical Intelligence in the Boardroom

By |2021-09-10T12:38:24-04:00April 26th, 2019|Blogs|

In the wake of countless business scandals and corporate collapses, there has been a call for a higher standard of business ethics. Ethics are at the heart and soul of every business decision; they form the basis of the underlying culture of every company. However, the culture and ethics of a company are set by the tone at the top: the boardroom. How can boards build a sound and sustainable culture as well as good ethical practices that will improve transparency, decrease the risk of fraud, and reduce the likelihood of reputation damage? The key focus should be to institute practices that outline the expectation of appropriate conduct, and to put in place controls that ensure these standards are being met. Five good governance practices to put in place to ensure good oversight: 1. Code of Conduct A Code of Conduct drives the board and each director to focus on areas of ethical risk, provide guidance to directors to help them recognize and deal with ethical issues, provide mechanisms to report unethical conduct, and ultimately helps foster [...]

Board Diversity – Are You an Agent of Change?

By |2021-09-10T13:41:10-04:00February 20th, 2019|Blogs|

It still surprises me that there has been little change in Corporate Canada in terms of adding more women to TSX listed boards. It has been four years since the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) implemented disclosure rules mandating that TSX-listed companies “comply or explain” as relates to their board diversity figures. The implementation was intended to lead to positive changes in how corporate boards recruit new board members, however, according to the recent Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt report 2018 Diversity Disclosure Practices, only 16.4% of directors sitting on corporate boards in 2018 were women. This change represents a slight increase in the average proportion of women on the board compared to prior years when the average percentage of female directors was relatively stagnant (12% in 2015, 13% in 2016 and 14.5% in 2017). So why is it that Canada’s boardrooms are not more diverse, when in fact, I often get asked to consider a board opportunity because the company is looking to add diversity to its board? I truly believe that creating a diverse board requires business leaders [...]

Exploring New Board Opportunities, Being Gracious in Saying “No”

By |2021-09-10T13:41:45-04:00January 7th, 2019|Blogs|

So, you are excited you received an email or phone call asking if you would consider a board opportunity. The steps you take to determine whether you are interested or not should be particularly strategic when exploring new board opportunities. The first step, do your due diligence in making sure you understand the company, culture, any conflicts that exist, and why you were considered for the board opportunity. Refer to my blog on building your board profile here: https://womengetonboard.ca/building-your-board-profile. Make sure you know the companies or industries that you are interested in. Review their values, mission and strategy. Do they align with your skills, experiences and values? Will you add value? I always evaluate Board opportunities in three ways: 1. How can I add value? 2. Do I have a personal statement of the attributes I can bring to the board? 3. How can I use my network to make meaningful connections to grow the business? The second step, if you are interested the opportunity, you should request more information early on, including: · A detailed board [...]

Finding Your Voice at the Boardroom Table

By |2021-09-10T12:38:29-04:00August 8th, 2018|Blogs|

What does it mean to find your voice at the boardroom table when you are a new board member appointed to a board that has longstanding relationships? Or a new Chair of the Board is appointed and you have never worked together? Or when you are the “token” woman at the boardroom table? How do you break in with credibility and build trust with your board colleagues? There are five tips I would like to share in helping you find your voice at the boardroom table: 1. Onboarding An onboarding process is set up to ensure that new board members familiarize themselves with the company, the industry it competes within, and the governance practices it’s ruled by. Its purpose is also to familiarize new board members, like yourself, with people you will be working with, such as other board members and members of the senior management team. It’s not uncommon that new board members may take up to a year to feel that they have fully completed the onboarding process and can become truly effective in their [...]

A Strategic Approach to Filling Board Positions Is Critical — Regardless of Your Gender

By |2021-09-10T13:41:53-04:00May 16th, 2018|Blogs|

  Written by: Debbie Stojanovic, CEO, Nealon Consulting & Deborah Rosati, Founder & CEO, Women Get On Board Diversity, and gender diversity in particular, is a top agenda item in boardrooms today — as it should be. It’s a priority not only because there are now legislative and regulatory changes that require it, but also because it’s just good business practice. Research shows that the right board composition can enhance decision-making processes and augment an organization’s performance and market reputation. [note] Menhi, Ekta & Dart, Beatrix, 2018/02/18, Globe and Mail, OpEd, More work must be done to boost gender diversity in Canada’s boardrooms, Link. [/note]  Can an improperly composed board pose a reputational risk for your organization? You bet. Today, we can’t open a newspaper, attend a meeting/event or have a general conversation without touching on some aspect of diversity. And that’s a good thing. From a board perspective, the conversation is shifting from why we need more women at the table to how we can accelerate progress. In light of this, it will be interesting to see what [...]

Go to Top