Are You Director Material?

By | June 10, 2009

This month we provide a checklist for you to test yourself against the benchmark for being an effective Director. If you are already a Director then this will provide a wake-up call to make sure you are still doing all you need to.

  1. Do you have the required minimum intellectual horsepower to understand and contribute to the conversation around Finance, Strategy, Compliance, & Operational Excellence? If you do, but don’t have the skills, develop your own Personal Development Plan.
  2. Do you demonstrate the required Director legal literacy?
  3. Do you keep your personal learning ahead of the rate of change in the relevant sectors? All Directors should demonstrate relevant market insight.
  4. Are you a Leader? Effective Directors are leaders of people, not simply operational or functional managers in a senior position.
  5. Do you demonstrate a passion for what the organisation does? Are you happy being with customers?
  6. Do you have a track record of success which you apply to the benefit of the organisation?
  7. Does your contribution make a transparent difference to the growth and development of your organisation, in addition to your functional responsibility?
  8. Do other people look up to you as a role model? A Director must have the credibility and respect of all levels of the organisation they come into contact with.
  9. Do you have sufficiently developed interpersonal skills? Are you easy to get on with? Will you deal effectively with conflict and difficult situations? Are you self aware? Emotional maturity gives a sense of being personally secure, making you much less liable to indulge in unacceptable behaviour.
  10. Do you have sufficient personal presence? Can you effectively represent the organisation at external events and at company conferences?
  11. Do you put the organisation first, sometimes even when in conflict with your personal life or personal preferences?
  12. Do you behave pro-actively? Doing what it takes, without being asked?
  13. Do you demonstrate the integrity to uphold the office?
  14. Do you uphold the vision & values of the organisation?
  15. Do you demonstrate a capacity for hard work?

Some organisations get this right, others have very little conscious understanding of what being a Director means, or explicit criteria when making Director appointments. One thing is for certain, making ill-informed Director decisions will have long term negative consequences for your organisation, and getting it right will have significantly positives outcomes for many years to come.

We spend significant time working with Directors and senior managers, in improving team and organisational performance. For more details contact us.

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