Chief operating officer Andrew Madry talks about his challenges and goals at AICD.
Q&A with Andrew Madry
Company Director (CD): What does your role entail?
Andrew Madry (AD): Ensuring AICD’s member services and operations are the best they can be. Having a great team supporting this function helps me immensely. I have oversight of the Division network of 65 staff across all major capital cities and Canberra, who are at the coalface of the organisation, dealing with members, directors and other stakeholders and delivering local events, courses and other services. In addition to this, I oversee the national infrastructure including the:
- National Events team who look after AICD’s Company Directors Conference, Directing Tomorrow Today – our member update event – overseas speaker roadshows and segment specific conferences and events;
- Finance and Information Services, which is ably assisted by CFO Brad Sherringham MAICD, who has day-to-day carriage of these areas;
- Human Resources and Operations led by Siobhan Walsh MAICD, which has recently focused on the roll-out of a new set of values for the organisation; and
- The Company Secretariat
CD: What challenges confront you day to day?
AM: The biggest challenge is ensuring members find a true benefit from what AICD delivers. After all, we have a very discerning set of stakeholders to satisfy. We constantly challenge ourselves on AICD’s overall relevance and how to increase it for the 21st century director. Our event and course exit polls show that satisfaction levels average around 85 per cent. We also have a high level of member participation, with more than 43 per cent of members attending a course or event in the last 12 months. These figures give us some evidence that we are going well, but we constantly seek new ways to innovate and improve quality.
CD: What would you most like to achieve in your role?
AM: In my eight years with AICD I have seen it reach many milestones, develop its range of services and become much more professional and commercial in its dealings. Over the past 18 months, with the appointment of John Colvin FAICD as CEO and Steve Burrell MAICD as general manager, Communications and Public Affairs, AICD has been able to take the director debate significantly further. I would like to see the organisation continue this impetus and grow into an international leader in governance and director issues.
CD: What do you most enjoy about working with the director community?
AM: As mentioned, AICD has the most discerning of all stakeholder groups. Our members are the men and women who lead corporate Australia. What I enjoy most is being able to deliver a service that meets, and in most instances exceeds, the expectation of this cohort. I also enjoy meeting and learning from this talented group. Their wealth of knowledge and their experiences can only be admired. But it is their willingness to assist the cause of AICD and the staff that is truly inspiring.
CD: What is your background?
AM: I started my professional life as a chartered accountant 20 years ago, specialising in computer audit and consulting. I joined Australclear, a pioneer in e-commerce that operated the national central securities depository to the Australian debt market, as the general manager responsible for the depository and strategic planning. I later joined a number of public listed companies, overseeing finance, information technology and strategy. I have consolidated my breadth of experience with formal qualifications, including an MBA.
CD: Why did you decide to join AICD?
AM: AICD does not produce a widget, nor is it motivated by profit. AICD is about “making a difference” and our vision is to assist our members and other directors to be the best they can be and improve corporate governance in Australia and increasing internationally. I truly believe in our vision and have seen the difference we make.
CD: What is the biggest lesson you have learnt in life?
AM: There is nothing better for business than a delighted customer. If your service does not only meet but exceed a customer’s expectation in most circumstances, then referrals will be your marketer. At AICD, over 72 per cent of new members and related purchases are referred by a satisfied member and we always strive to improve on this.
CD: What do you do in your spare time?
AM: I play the piano and percussion, as well as drums for a covers band, which performs about once every month for birthdays, weddings and anniversaries (and once at a divorce party). I enjoy watching any sport, especially if it involves one of my three sons or the Sydney Swans. My wife and I love dining out, concerts and the cinema and our boys keep both of us very busy.
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