It is important to understand why you are seeking board positions, what you can offer a board and the impact of your choice of boards on your future career as a director. While making a good choice can bring personal satisfaction, enhanced reputation and financial reward, a bad one can mean litigation, loss of assets and a damaged reputation.
It may be flattering to be asked to join a board but asking the right questions not only about the operations and financial health of the organisation, but also about its governance before you accept a position will be worth it if your opportunity turns out to be a poisoned chalice. For example, does the boardroom culture allow directors to speak freely and question management? Does the board have a good working relationship with the CEO and senior management team? Has the board articulated its risk appetite to management?
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