Do you have the right stuff to be a Director

Te Ohu Kaimoana is responsible for appointing directors to its subsidiary companies and trusts. There are also times when we are asked to supply suggestions for prospective members to sit on various advisory boards or industry fora.

The skills required of a director for each of the different organisations Te Ohu Kaimoana is responsible for are extremely varied e.g. Aotearoa Fisheries Limited, as a large integrated commercial fishing company, requires quite different skills and experience to Te Wai Maori Trustee Limited, the entity concerned with freshwater fisheries.

Te Ohu Kaimoana also has an interest in providing training to assist the development of individuals that have the potential to be future directors of the boards that it is responsible for and also for its own board.

Te Ohu Kaimoana is therefore compiling a list of suitable prospective directors, with a varied range of skills and experience, who could be considered for future appointments as and when they arise.

 

What do directors do?

The Board of Directors is responsible for the strategic outlook of an organisation. The board provides oversight and leadership and a monitoring role to ensure the implementation of the entity’s agreed strategy. They complement the role of management.

There is a very important distinction between the board and the management team. The board provides the governance that ensures the organisation is able to achieve its goals whereas management provide the day to day operational input to ensure the strategy and agreed goals are achieved. Effective organisations develop a strong relationship between the management and the board so the mix of personalities is also important.

The role of a board is to develop strategic thinking by considering such questions as:

  • the future of the organisation
  • the status of the industry the organisation operates in
  • the competition the organisation faces
  • the future challenges facing the organisation
  • the legal requirements the organisation must operate within

 

Skills and experience required

The skills and experience required for any appointment will depend on the type of organisation to which the appointment is being made and the particular skills and experience that already exist on that organisation’s board.  However, there are some general skills and experience that apply to every appointment. These can be summarised as follows:

  • strategic and governance leadership
  • informed decision-making
  • business acumen
  • communication

When considering the suitability of a director for a particular position we will be looking for individuals who can bring a mix of experience, which can readily be tapped into, and a fresh perspective that may be able to provide a new set of eyes for the current and future activities of the organisation.

Women fill important roles in many aspects of our Maori communities.  This is not well reflected in our business community to the extent that it could.  We are particularly determined to encourage and appoint women to these roles.  We want to encourage you to submit the names of good quality men and women for consideration.

 

What can you do?

To enable us to develop a database of potential directors for our organisations we are asking iwi and other representative Maori organisations to provide us with names of individuals who may be appropriate to be considered for future director positions. To assist with the consideration of any individual it is important to include an appropriate CV, providing a summary of the person’s skills and experience.

We are not requesting applications for any particular roles at present. Rather we are looking to build a list of potential candidates who could be considered for any role that Te Ohu Kaimoana needs to make an appointment for, in the future.

We are hoping that by constructing such a database we will considerably widen the available pool of potential candidates. The database will also give us an opportunity to assess potential candidates who may benefit from some particular type of training to enhance their existing skills and experience.

We would appreciate you forwarding names and CVs of individuals you believe would make suitable potential directors to:

Te Ohu Kaimoana
Attention: Ms Charlie Mackey
P.O. Box 3277
Wellington
Email: charlie.mackey@teohu.maori.nz