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British Business Bank seeks new Non Executive Director – audit & risk/governance skills sought

The UK Government established the British Business Bank (“the Bank”) in November 2014 as a long-term institution charged with ensuring the finance markets in the UK serve the needs of UK SMEs and mid-sized businesses. It has a single shareholder, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (“BEIS”).

The mission of the Bank is to drive sustainable growth and prosperity across the UK by improving access to finance for small businesses, enabling them to succeed in the transition to a net zero economy, change the structure of the finance markets for smaller businesses and mid-caps so these markets work more effectively and dynamically.

The Bank is charged with 7 objectives:

  1. Increase the supply of finance available to smaller businesses where markets do not work well.
  2. Help create a more diverse market for smaller business finance with greater choice of options and providers.
  3. Identify and help reduce regional imbalances in access to finance in smaller businesses across the UK.
  4. Encourage and enable SMEs to seek the finance best suited to their needs.
  5. Be the centre of expertise on smaller business finance in the UK, providing advice and delivering on behalf of Government.
  6. Pursue the Bank’s other objectives while managing taxpayer’s money efficiently within a robust risk management framework.
  7. Support the UK’s transition to a net-zero economy.

The Bank is a government-owned economic development bank and is not a bank in a conventional sense. It typically does not finance businesses directly, but instead provides funds and guarantees to private sector partners, enabling them to finance a greater number of smaller businesses (either through debt or equity). It uses economic evidence to design programmes that address market failures affecting smaller businesses across the economy. It also works to improve smaller businesses’ awareness of the finance options available to them.  The Bank supports SMEs throughout their full life cycle from start-up to pre-IPO.

The stock of finance supported through the Bank’s core finance programmes was £8.506bn at the end of March 2021. Covid-19 emergency support offered £80.4bn of finance to almost 1.7m businesses. This emergency support, which is not included under the Bank’s core programmes, was evenly distributed across the Nations and regions of the UK.

The Bank’s core programmes are designed to bring benefits to businesses that are start-ups, businesses with high growth potential that are looking to scale up, and those looking to stay ahead in their market. The Bank’s programmes are having a major impact, they have already supported the development of 4 UK Unicorns and the Start Up Loan company has lent over £500m supporting more than 70,000 new companies.  Since the Chancellor announced at Budget 2017 the establishment of a £2.5bn subsidiary, British Patient Capital, the Bank has become one of the biggest investors in venture capital within the UK.

Operating Model

The Bank’s Shareholder Relationship Framework establishes that the Bank has operational independence and at arm’s length from Government, under the governance of a Board of Directors drawn from senior, experienced private sector bankers, investors and SME practitioners with one shareholder representative.

 

The Board is chaired by Lord Smith of Kelvin and meets sufficiently frequently to fully meet its responsibilities and usually not less than 7 times per year.

The Bank has an organisational model similar to development bank peers and commercial institutions.  In addition to the main operating company, the British Business Bank plc, it has two commercial subsidiaries, British Business Investments Ltd and British Patient Capital Ltd.

The main activities of the operating companies are as follows:

  • British Business Bank plc
  • British Patient Capital (including venture growth, growth and co-investment funds)
  • British Business Investments (including debt funds, non-bank platforms, challenger banks, asset finance, regional angels and a fund of fund programme investing in venture)
  • Venture Capital Solutions (Enterprise Capital Funds and Regional Investment programmes)
  • Guarantee and Wholesale Solutions (Enterprise Finance Guarantee scheme, Enable Guarantees – providing risk transfer – and Enable Funding – providing warehousing and securitisation services to asset finance companies
  • Start Up Loans (lending of up to £25k to individuals)
  • The Bank delivers the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS), Bounce Back Loan Scheme and Future Fund.

Currently, the Bank employs circa 500 people based within its two offices in Sheffield and London.

More information is available at the website: www.british-business-bank.co.uk

Person Specification

As a Non-Executive Director of the Bank, the successful candidate will be expected to play an active and integral part in the long-term success and the strategy of the Bank, given the collective responsibility of the Board. As a fully functioning financial services entity, the role holder should be able to contribute to matters ranging, for example, from the challenges facing SMEs with respect to finance, the management of a wide variety of risks and the technological challenges facing today’s financial services industry.

The Bank is seeking an outstanding individual with the highest levels of integrity and independence.  Board members promote the highest standards of corporate governance with the personal credibility and presence to engage, as needed, with Ministers and senior Government and business stakeholders. This is a collaborative Board with a constructive approach and a strong belief in the Bank’s mission.

Matters reserved for the Board include the strategic direction of the business; significant investments; group policies; terms of reference of all committees; risk appetite; determining appropriate levels of remuneration for the executive directors; remuneration policy and appointments to the Board and its committees including Audit, Remuneration, Risk and Nominations.

Whilst all Board members should possess the appropriate balance of skills, experience and independence to discharge their duties and responsibilities, the Bank, seeks to bring different skills to the Board. An area of interest is the appointment of a Non-Executive Director who brings experience of the governance requirements relating to fraud, financial crime and the operational and controls environments of an organisation such as BBB.

The successful candidate will:

  • Contribute to setting, monitoring and challenging the strategic direction of the Bank, by assisting in developing key strategic objectives, overseeing the achievement of those objectives and challenging the on-going appropriateness of those objectives.
  • Contribute to open and honest debate at Board meetings and provide constructive challenge to the executive decisions, adding diversity of thought and industry experience to the Board.
  • Promote the long-term success of the Bank and ensure the accountability of the Bank, scrutinising the performance of management in meeting agreed goals and objectives and monitoring the reporting of performance.
  • Uphold high standards of integrity and probity and support the Chairman and executive directors by seeking to instil the appropriate culture, values and behaviours in the boardroom and beyond.
  • Commit sufficient time and resource to fulfil all functional responsibilities and continually develop personal capabilities to do so.

It is important that the new appointee both understands and is aligned to the mission of the Bank appreciating the legal and regulatory parameters within which it operates. Whilst the Bank has operational independence, government ownership brings particular responsibilities both in terms of managing the relationship with the government as a stakeholder, but also in the governance aspects of utilising taxpayers’ money. Candidates will need to navigate these issues being comfortable and confident in developing and managing relationships with key stakeholders.

The right candidates are likely to have the following attributes:

  • A good understanding of how financial markets work.
  • Significant experience and relevance in the areas of fraud, financial crime and the controls environment of a significant financial services organisation.
  • Managing relationships at Board level with some Board and/or NED experience.
  • Experience in a digitally enabled business.
  • Have the intellect and breadth of vision that will enable him/her to fully contribute to strategic and high-level operational discussions.
  • Strong analytical and interpersonal skills.
  • Credibility and communication skills to operate confidently and effectively both internally and externally.
  • Be prepared to be appropriately challenging to the executive and able to scrutinise performance, whilst also providing appropriate support.
  • Be able to work effectively as part of a team in a low ego environment.
  • Flexibility, a sense of humour and good interpersonal skills are also important.
  • Apply common sense, pragmatism and good business judgement to key issues.
  • Be an enthusiastic, inquisitive and robust individual, committed to pursuing and exploring all issues relevant to the business and governance of the firm.
  • Have the time to carry out this role effectively and the interest in BBB to want to add real value to the Board and the business.
  • In addition to the essential characteristics above, knowledge and experience in developing environmental, social and governance (ESG) policies within a business is highly desirable.

The Board values diversity in all forms and continually seeks to strengthen its already diverse Board composition. The Board would welcome the addition of further gender and ethnic diversity to its number.

At the Bank, we value a diverse workforce and inclusive culture where all employees feel included, empowered and able to bring their full selves to work.  Employing people from different backgrounds and with unique and different experiences and perspectives helps us develop better ideas and to be a stronger and more successful business.  It also supports and strengthens the Bank’s culture and reinforces the company as a great place to work.  Our goal is to be a company which is open and accessible, recruiting unique, diverse and talented people.

The Bank’s diversity and inclusion efforts focus on:

  • Leading and managing inclusively
  • Creating opportunities that enable development and learning
  • Creating a work environment where all employees feel involved and valued

We guarantee to interview all disabled applicants, provided they meet the criteria of the post, and confirm on their application, their eligibility for the guaranteed interview scheme.

 

Please click here for further information.

Adult hospice in Guildford seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

Due to the end of term of office, two vacancies will shortly arise on our Board of Trustees. If you have experience of fundraising, medical, business, legal, accountancy, estates, or other relevant work experience we’d love to hear from you.

Phyllis Tuckwell is an adult hospice offering supportive and end of life care to patients living with an advanced or terminal illness, such as cancer, and to those who love and care for them.

We support over 250 patients, carers and relatives every day, in their own homes, in the community, at the Beacon Centre in Guildford and at the Hospice in Farnham. We serve our local community of 550,000 people across West Surrey and North East Hampshire.

Everything we do is built around the patient (and their carer/family) and, as far as possible, we offer people the choice about where they are cared for.

We are seeking to attract applications from as wide a range of areas as possible.  If you have experience of fundraising, medical, business, legal, accountancy, estates, or other relevant work experience we’d love to hear from you.

Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice Care is an independent charitable trust offering specialist palliative care in a compassionate and friendly environment. We aim to provide equitable supportive and end of life care to those with an advanced or terminal illness and to their families. Our services help around 2,000 people each year and include a 14 bed In-Patient Unit, day care centres, outpatient appointments, and a community service including our Hospice Care at Home team, and, in normal times, are dependent on our local community for 80% of our running costs.

Our Board usually meets 4 times each year.  In addition to which Trustees are expected to attend our annual Strategy Away Day with the Senior Management Team and sit on one of our quarterly sub committees, some of which may be held via Teams.

If you have the necessary skills and experience and would like to support PT you are invited to submit a covering letter and full details of your curriculum vitae, highlighting relevant experience and the reasons for your interest.

Please click here for further information.

Streatham Space Project seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

Streatham Space Project is looking for trustees to join its board of directors.

We are a neighbourhood venue that hosts theatre, music, comedy, spoken word, visual art, filming & recording, rehearsals, and private events. Our spaces are shared by critically acclaimed national and international artists, young people at the start of their creative journeys, and children and their families from the Streatham area and beyond.

The trustees oversee the operation of the charity. You will contribute to the further strategic development of the organisation, its programmes, and services.

Management of the organisation is delegated to the Creative Director and Executive Director and the trustees support them by providing guidance and insight to ensure effective business planning, governance, and viability. This will include working together to develop organisation strategies; overseeing budgets and financial practices; and ensuring compliance with charity law.

The board meets 5 to 6 times across the year. This includes quarterly board meetings, an Annual General Meeting (AGM) and away days. Members are also invited to join sub-committees or working groups in line with their experience and specialisms.

We are particularly interested to hear from people who have a specialism in one or more of the following:

  • Legal expertise
  • Connections within the communities of Streatham
  • Experience of managing a public venue
  • Experience of management in small/medium commercial business
  • Experience of Human Resource
  • Creative learning or working with children/young people
  • Experience in and connection with the theatre and general arts area
  • People with disabilities or those with specific experience of this sector
  • Previous experience of serving on boards is not required and training and support will be offered if needed.

We are actively seeking candidates who reflect the wide range of cultures and experiences in Streatham, and we’re keen to hear from applicants who live locally or have a connection to the local area.

Please click here for application details.

Newbury Building Society seeks new Non-Executive Director – paid role

This role may not be suitable for those currently in full time employment.

Newbury Building Society is an award-winning, independent, mutual society which has been serving the community for 165 years, providing mortgages and savings for its members. It has won the British Bank Awards for the best building society in 2021 and best specialist mortgage provider for the last three years.

Established in 1856 under the name of “The Newbury Permanent Benefit Building and Investment Society”, the Society has grown and today, with over 70,000 members, the Society is stronger than ever with ten branches across Berkshire, Hampshire, and Oxfordshire. It is committed to supporting the communities in its branch towns: Abingdon, Alton, Andover, Basingstoke, Didcot, Hungerford, Newbury, Thatcham, Winchester and Wokingham.

The Society’s long-term strategy is shaped around its key stakeholders, which includes delivering steady and sustainable growth through a focus on customer value over the long term, developing and accelerating the Society’s digital transformation, demonstrating a community conscience, and looking after its people.

The Society is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion. Newbury Building Society recognises that a quality board is achieved through selecting Directors who think and communicate diverse thoughts, ideas and opinions and who have diverse backgrounds and education.

Role specification

The Board of Newbury Building Society is looking to appoint a new Non-Executive Director to replace a retiring Director. The new Non-Executive Director will be expected to make a real contribution to the Board and add value by offering wise counsel and advice, based on their own experiences and successful track record of achievement. The new Non-Executive Director will provide an independent perspective on group strategy, performance and resources, with a particular focus on the following matters:

  • Risk: contribute to the identification, assessment and prioritisation of risks facing the Society
  • Regulatory: contribute to the Board’s ability to interpret regulatory requirements and changes
  • Operational Resilience: contribute to the Board’s understanding of implementing operating plans and retaining operational resilience
  • Corporate Governance: contribute to the Board’s understanding of corporate governance matters including culture, inclusion and diversity

Key responsibilities of the Non-Executive Director include:

  • Attending and contributing to Board and Committee meetings and discussions, providing input and challenge
  • Providing strategic direction and guidance
  • Keeping sufficiently and appropriately updated of the relevant matters prior to taking part in Board and Committee discussions and decisions
  • Scrutinising the performance of management in meeting agreed goals and objectives
  • Monitoring Society and Committee performance

The successful candidate is expected to join the Risk Committee and, depending on their level of experience, might be asked to Chair the Risk Committee in the near future.

Risk Committee Chair responsibilities include:

  • Ensuring that the Committee provides assurance over the Society’s Risk Management Framework including the risk appetite, risk monitoring, policies and strategy
  • Ensuring that the Committee for which they are responsible meet with sufficient frequency
  • Fostering an open, inclusive discussion which builds on other Directors’ areas of expertise and provides independent oversight of executive decisions
  • Ensuring that the Committee devotes sufficient time and attention to matters within its remit
  • Helping to ensure that the Board or Committee and its members have the information necessary to discharge their responsibilities properly
  • Reporting to the Board on the Committee’s activities

 

Person specification

The successful candidate will have a recent, senior-level risk management background within a highly regulated sector in the UK such as financial services, pharmaceuticals, utilities, etc. This experience could have been gained in a technical risk function (e.g. CRO, Chief Compliance Officer, General Counsel etc), or as a senior manager (e.g. COO) with direct responsibility for risk management oversight, or as a non-executive on a specialist risk committee. Of critical importance is demonstrating experience and understanding of a similar regulatory environment within which the Society operates.

The Board is open to those seeking their first non-executive role. The new Non-Executive Director will also be asked to join the Risk Committee, and potentially chair the Committee in the near future.

Newbury Building Society is a mutual and a medium-sized enterprise, and is driven by its purpose and values. Candidates must demonstrate an affinity to the mutual sector and have the ability to be an exceptional advocate and ambassador for the Society. Candidates should also demonstrate an understanding of some of the specific challenges and levels of resources within a business of this scale.

As well as demonstrating the core competencies above, the Board would be interested to understand candidates’ experience with regards to the below as key topics which the Board will be continuing to face up to in the near future:

  • Customer Service: experience meeting customer expectations and transforming the customer experience
  • Environmental and sustainability: the ability to contribute to the Board’s oversight and understanding of sustainability issues and their relationship to the Society Corporate Plan and long-term strategy
  • Technology / Cyber: the ability to contribute to the Board’s understanding of information technology and cyber security risks

Required for this role

  • Risk management in regulated sectors in the UK Recent (within the last 5 years) experience of working directly with risk management issues on a day-to-day basis – for example, operating at ExCo or equivalent level responsible for broad risk oversight, previous specialisation in a technical risk function, or extensive experience sitting on a specialist risk committee. Candidates should demonstrate a deep understanding of the regulatory expectations within their respective sectors, evidence a risk mindset and be familiar with common risk methodologies.

Board composition

Piers Williamson, Chair
Phillippa Cardno
Lee Bambridge
Darren Garner
William Roberts
Chris Brown
Alistair Welham
Fiona Phillips
Debbie Beaven

 

Terms of appointment

This role is remunerated, and reasonable domestic travel expenses will be reimbursed (except travel expenses to attend Board meetings). The appointment is for a three-year term, which can be renewed at the discretion of the Board. Non-Executive Directors are expected to attend and participate fully in Board meetings, the AGM and other relevant Board Committees by devoting appropriate time and preparation to effectively dispense duties and responsibilities. Overall, it is anticipated that a time commitment of two or three days per month, including preparation time, will be required after the induction phase. This includes attendance at monthly Board meetings, committee meetings, the AGM, Board Strategy Days, and training seminars. Non-Executive Directors are also encouraged to visit Society Branches and Head Office departments. In addition, they will be expected to devote appropriate time ahead of each meeting to reading the papers provided. An additional fee of £3,000 will be provided for the Chair of the Risk Committee.

Board meetings are scheduled for:

25 July
26 September
31 October
28 November
21 December

Risk Committee meetings are scheduled quarterly, with the dates for the second-half of 2022 being :

19 September
12 December

Process

The organisation will view the applications without edits. We therefore advise applicants to avoid using ‘see CV’ or ‘please call me to discuss further’ in your application as it may restrict your chances of progressing to the next round.

For application details please get in touch directly with www.nurole.com enquiries@nurole.com

Cabinet Office: Civil Service Commissioners sought

This post may not be suitable for those currently in full time employment.

The Civil Service Commission is a high profile body whose work can attract considerable public and media interest. It is independent of the Government and of the Civil Service

The Commission regulates recruitment to the Civil Service by providing assurance that appointments are on merit after fair and open competition.

It also helps promote the Civil Service values of Honesty, Integrity, Objectivity and Impartiality, and hears complaints under the Civil Service Code.

Civil Service Commissioners:

  • chair recruitment competitions across the UK for the most senior-level appointments in the Civil Service;
  • support Government Departments in promoting the Civil Service values of impartiality, objectivity, honesty and integrity;
  • provide advice and challenge on how the wider system could be strengthened to reinforce the Civil Service values;
  • adjudicate on complaints investigations (about recruitment and about ethical standards);
  • set standards for recruitment into the Civil Service.

We are looking to recruit at least four new Commissioners to form a diverse Board, with members whose experience is drawn from a range of backgrounds.

 

Essential Criteria

The successful candidates will have:

  • Recognition of the challenges facing the country and the Civil Service’s role in addressing these challenges and efficiently delivering demonstrable improvements to the lives of citizens;
  • Appreciation of the skills required in the Civil Service to address such challenges, both generally and those specific to the wide variety of departmental and professional contexts in which competitions will take place;
  • Understanding of the importance of effective leadership, which challenges the status quo and established thinking, to the success of an organisation, and the ability to work with vacancy holders to interpret what leadership capability is required for the given context and how to assess for that leadership capability;
  • The ability to command trust at the highest levels, demonstrating commitment to ethical standards and good governance, including fairness of process and outcomes while acting independently;
  • Strong skills in judgement, based on the ability to assimilate a range of evidence and perspectives, while being willing to take calculated risks and do things differently;
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to work well within a diverse team of influential people;
  • Appreciation of the legislative, constitutional and public policy context of the role.

In addition, candidates will also need to demonstrate at least one of the following:

  • Commercial expertise, gained at senior levels in large and complex organisations;
  • strong leadership skills, with a particular focus on leading innovation and transformational change, improving delivery and maximising benefits from technology and data;
  • experience of recruitment and/or HR issues at a senior level in the private, public or voluntary sectors ;
  • substantial experience in regulation, particularly in supporting ethical standards and good governance;
  • evidence of supporting diversity and inclusion, including diversity of thought, experience and background.

It is desirable for applicants to have experience in several of these additional criteria to support the breadth of appointments that the Commission faces at any given time.

Successful candidates will receive payment of £400 per day for working on Commission business.

Please click here for application details.

Educational charity addressing sustainability and climate justice seeks new Trustee with corp governance / charity law expertise

Our client is seeking to recruit 3 additional members to their board of trustees, to progress and shape their rapidly growing educational charity for addressing sustainability and climate justice.

About the role:

They currently have four fantastic trustees. They are looking to add three more external (non-student) trustees with specific experience and expertise. You will need to be able to commit to a minimum of 5-6 days work for them a year on a voluntary basis, which includes preparing for, and attending, our four board meetings each year. Board meetings are a mix of online and in-person events.

They are particularly interested in applicants who can bring specific expertise or experience in the following areas:

• Corporate governance and charity law
• Digital engagement and/or software development
• Finance and financial audit
• Human resources, personnel and trade union relations
• National education policy
• Nature and biodiversity, and tackling the ecological crisis
• Safeguarding
• Strategy development and experience of leading an organisation in strong growth
• Working in the devolved nations

Trustee Requirements:

• Student-centred
• Inclusive and supportive
• Driven by social justice, anti-oppression and solidarity
• Responsive, dynamic, flexible
• Reliable and honest
• Transparent and accountable
• Team-focused and collaborative
• Understanding and caring

You should also have a passion for taking action to tackle the climate emergency and ecological crisis and be an advocate of youth action and agency.

As a trustee, you will gain insight into the breadth of their work, be part of a dynamic team of trustees and wider organisational staff team, all of whom bring a wealth of experience of supporting young people and transforming the education sector.

About the organisation

The organisation was created by students and staff  in 2019 to go further and faster in tackling the climate emergency and ecological crisis and deliver on climate justice through education. They are striving to get more young people leading on, and learning for, sustainability; to repurpose the education system around the climate emergency and ecological crisis; and to make sustainability more inclusive, so it is for everyone. They run engagement programmes and systems change campaigns, produce influential research and deliver training and development initiatives. They work with most UK universities, many colleges, numerous public sector organisations and increasingly environmental and sustainability charities.

The organisation employs 35 staff, with over a half being young people, and our turnover is £1.4 million per year. They are an ambitious and fast-paced organisation that is in strong growth, reflecting the desire of the existing trustees to urgently take action on the climate emergency and ecological crisis.

 

Please click here for application details.

Lloyds Banking Group seeks new RemCo member and Non-Executive Director

This post may not be suitable for those currently in a full time role.

Lloyds Banking Group (the Group) is the largest UK retail and commercial financial services provider with around 26 million customers and a presence in nearly every community. With the unique purpose of Helping Britain Prosper, the Group’s strategic vision is to be the UK customer-focused digital leader and integrated financial services provider, capitalising on new opportunities, at scale. Lloyds Banking Group plc, Lloyds Bank plc, Bank of Scotland plc (together with Lloyds Bank plc, the Ring-fenced Banks) and HBOS plc (each a relevant Group Company) are seeking to appoint a Non-Executive Director to their respective Boards who will also sit on the Remuneration Committee, and (subject to conditions including regulatory approval) serve as a future successor for the Remuneration Committee Chair. Candidates will bring an ability to contribute to shaping the corporate strategy of Lloyds Banking Group as a whole. Candidates must have stature, integrity, business acumen and a strong reputation. They will be able to build relationships and win the confidence and respect of a wide range of stakeholders while being passionate about fostering a climate of success in the Group.

Expertise, skills & background

  • Ideally candidates will bring significant practical experience and capabilities including:
  • Plc/listed company (or equivalent) credentials as an executive or non-executive director on the board of a financial services business of significant scale
  • Remuneration committee experience, ideally as chair of the remuneration committee for a FTSE 100/250 (or equivalent) in a comparably complex institution, preferably financial services
  • Strong stakeholder engagement skills to engage effectively with executives, the Board, shareholders, investors and regulators
  • Senior leadership experience within a comparably complex institution of scale, bringing commercial acumen, strategic insights, operational experience, and good judgement
  • Customer focused and consumer centric, ideally bringing senior experience from across a digitally enabled financial services, e-commerce, and customer focused regulated business
  • Exceptional intellect and high EQ; an inquisitive mind, with an ability to manage the detail of a board role, influence others and provide constructive challenge whilst building trust
  • Open, inclusive leader with an ability to challenge from a broader perspective the processes by which Group Companies assess their risks and manage their business
  • Alignment to the Group’s purpose, and sustainability and inclusion and diversity goals

Time Commitment

  • The estimated minimum likely time commitments are c.30 – 34 days per year as Non-Executive Director and member of the Remuneration Committee (which includes attendance at scheduled Board and Remuneration Committee meetings, the AGM, strategy sessions and preparation time). For Committee Chair roles additional time as required. A typical year may include 10 Board and 5 Remuneration Committee meetings. Candidates will ideally be resident or domiciled in the UK or be comfortable travelling to the UK for Board meetings.

Please click here for further information.

Learning with Parents seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

We are looking for committed and passionate Trustees who are dedicated to supporting Learning with Parents to ensure all children are supported at home to reach their potential.

What will you be doing?

Our next steps as a charity will be to increase the number of children and parents we work with through working with more schools and developing more partnerships. We are looking for committed and passionate Trustees who are dedicated to supporting Learning with Parents to ensure all children are supported at home to reach their potential.

Learning with Parents is recruiting for three individuals to join our Board of Trustees. We are particularly keen to hear from candidates with fundraising or legal expertise. We are also looking to appoint a qualified accountant.

We think it is important that our charity reflects the lived experience of our beneficiaries, and we want to be an organisation where employees and supporters from any background can thrive. We particularly welcome applications from disabled, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME), Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans including non-binary (LGBTQ+) candidates, and candidates from low-income families. These groups are currently underrepresented at Learning with Parents, and we are committed to increasing representation and diversity at the charity.

There are numerous statutory responsibilities of a Trustee and a certain level of commitment is required.

What are we looking for?

About You

  • Essential:
    • A commitment to Learning with Parents’ charitable mission
    • Experience of operating at a senior or Board level
    • Experience of effective, fair and impartial decision-making
    • Experience of developing, and working towards, a strategic vision
    • Experience of building and sustaining relationships with key stakeholders
    • Willingness to contribute the time and effort necessary to the position
    • Appetite to challenge and discuss issues openly and to make difficult decisions
    • Ability to advocate on behalf of the charity, particularly within your network
    • An understanding / willingness to learn the responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship
    • An understanding / willingness to learn the roles of Chair, Trustee and CEO
  • Desirable:

We are particularly excited to hear from anyone with experience in one (or more) of the following areas:

  • Experience of fundraising and contacts that would support this activity for LwP
  • Knowledge of the law from a Charity’s perspective
  • Accountancy and financial management

 

Please click here for further information.

Cultural organisation in Southampton ‘City Eye’ seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

This is an exciting time to join our board. City Eye is a small but resilient organisation and we are at a transformational time in our existence. We are currently engaged in a process of organisational development to strengthen our financial position, confirm our long term business plan, and grow capacity and activity.

In 2018 – after many years of commitment and collaboration with project partners – City Eye moved into Studio 144; a new building created as a cultural hub in Southampton’s city centre. This move, while still presenting some challenges, offers many opportunities for us.  Studio 144 is undoubtedly an extremely exciting place for us to be. The board’s role is critical  in supporting the organisation to navigate obstacles and to capitalise on the benefits of the new location; ensuring ultimately that City Eye will be able to fully operate and realise its organisational vision.

The Trustees meet on average six times per year, depending on situation and need. The meetings last approximately two hours and take place in Southampton city centre or online. There will be paperwork to read prior to each meeting. Attendance at these meetings and the AGM is expected. There are ongoing working groups amongst board members and input into a working group as appropriate is welcomed. It is expected that a Trustee will advocate for City Eye and represent the organisation if required to do so. Trustees will always be welcomed to City Eye events and it is hoped that attendance at some is possible, particularly during Southampton Film Week (annually in November).

What are we looking for?

The Board of Trustees are collectively responsible for the governance and leadership of the organisation and, working with the company’s Executive Director, ensuring City Eye meets its charitable objectives as set out in our articles of association:

We are looking for people who are willing to take on this responsibility, who are passionate and enthusiastic about City Eye’s work and its future growth and success. We welcome those who are able to be both supportive and thoughtfully challenging and who can offer their wisdom and skills to move City Eye forwards.

To build on specific skills already represented in our board membership, we are particularly looking to recruit individuals who can offer expertise in the following areas:

Legal: perhaps you are a solicitor, or you work in the sector in some way. We need you to be able to ask relevant legal questions and then support us to find the right answers – whether you have them or whether you know how to find the person who will.

Financial: knowledge of fundraising and maximising income would be of interest here.  We engage an independent accountant with in-depth and long-term knowledge of City Eye’s financial situation, but a good grasp of accounts is an essential component of board membership.

Business Development: we are currently undergoing a process of organisational development. An ability to strategically consider the organisation and recognise opportunities is of interest here.

Film Industry:  The film industry is wide and varied, we are interested in hearing from anyone with experience of working within the sector at any level, and to understand how your experience and reflections might inform City Eye.

While we have identified a need to engage trustees with the above expertise, we are interested in hearing from people who can bring relevant wider abilities and experience to City Eye.

Please click here for further information.

New Forest Mencap seeks new Trustees

The NFM Trustees are actively looking to appoint additional trustees to the board.

We have recently been successful in attracting new funds, which we are using to increase the opportunities available to people with a learning disability in the New Forest area. Our Trustees meet on a bi-monthly basis and the position is voluntary.

 

Please click here for application details.

A Lawyer’s move to Academia with Sarah Paterson

Sarah was a partner at Slaughter and May for 12 years before she took on a full time teaching and research role at the LSE in 2013.  She retains a part time consultancy at Slaughters in their insolvency and restructuring practice, and has recently obtained a professorship at the LSE.  Sarah is regarded as one of the leading insolvency lawyers of her generation but her story is likely to appeal to those lawyers of any discipline who aspire to revert to the academic roots of their profession.

 

LSE Students’ Union seeks new Lay Trustees – governance expertise sought

We are excited to welcome new Trustees onto our board to gain different experiences, perspectives and ideas from other sectors to our own.

LSE Students’ Union (LSESU) is a £5.3m not-for-profit organisation for LSE students. Our aim is to help LSE students make the most of the life-changing experiences open to them during their time at university.

We’ve been part of LSE since 1897, and all LSE students automatically become LSESU members when they enrol. Our members join one of the UK’s most active and best Students’ Unions and make it whatever they need it to be.

With over 55% of our students being postgrads and 70% of our students being international, one thing is for certain. There is always something exciting happening.

In recent years, we have been on an incredible journey, enhancing our organisation from top to bottom.

We have reviewed our internal structures and staff teams, opened a new state of the art building with outstanding sports and leisure facilities in the heart of London, and we have radically enhanced the satisfaction and experiences of our members.

We have also changed our governance structures so that we can benefit from the additional experience and expertise that externally appointed Trustees can provide.

We are striving to be a Union for all. Our student demographic has high numbers of international and postgraduate students, which means that much of the research about student experience typically does not relate to us as it’s often focused on undergraduate students.

When we look to enhance our union, we have to be creative, brave and bold to find innovative solutions as many of the sector’s practices are not applicable.

We are excited to welcome new Trustees onto our board to gain different experiences, perspectives and ideas from other sectors to our own.  This diversity will ensure that we continue to make the innovations necessary to deliver an exceptional experience for all our students.

Our Board would benefit from more leadership experience in the following areas; campaigning, communications, finance, HR, governance and commercial development.

We are proud that our students are wonderfully diverse in every sense and come from all areas of the globe. We welcome your application no matter who you are, or where you are based.

 

Please click here for application details.

Young refugee charity Big Leaf Foundation seeks new Trustee – legal expertise welcomed

Big Leaf Foundation is a small charity working with displaced young people aged 16-25 in Surrey. Our aim is to provide a nurturing programme of activities, projects and events that focus on combating social isolation and improving wellbeing for the young people we support. The experience of arriving in a new country is, for many young people, overwhelming and incredibly difficult. They are often cut off from everything that is familiar to them, leaving them vulnerable to loneliness, isolation, anxiety and
boredom. Our founders saw an opportunity to change their situation and help them feel a sense of inclusion within a network of their peers and the wider community.

We want to engage the young people we work with to be excited about the opportunities available to them, and to value their unique talents and abilities so that they can rediscover their potential and move forward with renewed optimism. We want to support and empower these young people to know that they are more than the status they have been given and help them find their place within their local community.

For more information please visit www.bigleaffoundation.org.uk

PERSON SPECIFICATION

We are seeking individuals who have a strong empathy with our mission. We need individuals with experience, skills, and expertise in one or more of the following areas:

• lived experience of displacement or of seeking refuge in the UK;

• experience supporting displaced young people or people seeking refuge in the UK

• campaigning, advocacy and/or legal, engaging supporting services (Police, Council services etc)

• fundraising

We particularly welcome applications from people with a demonstrable interest in the plight of displaced young people and an in-depth understanding of our work and ambitions.

The Board of Trustees are jointly responsible for the overall governance and strategic direction of the charity, its financial health, the probity of its activities and developing the organisation’s aims, objectives and goals in accordance with the governing document, legal and regulatory guidelines.

All trustees should also be aware of, and understand, their individual and collective responsibilities, and should not be overly reliant on one or more individual trustees in any particular aspect of the governance of the charity.

We ask that Trustees attend a minimum of two Big Leaf Foundation projects per year as we strongly believe this contributes to a better understanding of our organisation, how we work and the young people we support.

Experience:

• Experience in one of the key areas outlined above (lived experience of displacement, campaigning and advocacy or fundraising).

• Demonstrable experience of building and sustaining relationships with key stakeholders and colleagues to achieve organisational objectives.

• Excellent leadership and effective decision-making.

• History of impartiality, fairness and the ability to respect confidences.

• Track record of commitment to promoting equality and diversity.

Knowledge, skills and understanding:

• Commitment to the organisation and a willingness to devote the necessary time and effort.

• Preparedness to make unpopular recommendations to the board, and willingness to speak your mind.

• Willingness to be available to staff/volunteers for advice and enquiries on an ad hoc basis.

• Good, independent judgement and strategic vision.

• An understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship.

• An ability to work effectively as part of a team.

 

Please click here for further information.

Newham community charity seeks new Trustee with law expertise

The Magpie Project is a grass-roots, community-led, award-winning charity based in Newham, east London, supporting women with children under 5 who are homeless or insecurely housed and have No Recourse to Public Funds. We offer supported stay-and-play sessions throughout the week where mums and minis can come and play, enjoy a healthy breakfast and home-cooked lunch, access our babybank of nappies, wipes, buggies, clothes and other essentials, and build support networks that are so often broken as a result of homelessness, frequent moves, and trauma. We also provide trauma-informed, compassionate casework on housing, immigration, domestic violence, and other issues that families face, and make supported referrals to foodbanks, children’s centres, health visitors, solicitors, and other services.

The Magpie Project has grown organically out of a 7-week pilot in 2017 where we co-produced with homeless and insecurely housed women what a service would look like that met their needs and lowered their barriers to engaging and seeking support. Co-production remains central to our work through our 3-word strategy ‘ask the mums’, which we keep alive through regular ‘Mothers’ Meetings’ where we get feedback from families and our Mums’ Leadership Team which meets fortnightly with our CEO to take key decisions relating to the project and define our outward voice and advocacy work. Our creative partnerships have included musicians, visual artists, dance artists, and an international fashion designer who uses our families’ stories in her award-winning designs, which give voice to our families’ experiences. These sit alongside our policy and advocacy work which has included giving evidence to the House of Lords Committee on Covid Recovery, the APPG on Temporary Accommodation, and frequent meetings with local authorities to ensure that services are designed with the needs and barriers of our families in mind.

Everything we do has our mums and minis at its heart. Our vision is for happier, healthier children, being positively parented by socially integrated and well-informed mums who feel more in control of their situation.

Who we are looking for:

  • Experience in HR, Immigration, Homelessness, VAWG charity sectors, or law welcome.
  • We are keen to hear from those whose background and experience resonates with that of the women we support, applicants from a West African, Middle Eastern, Albanian heritage, and those with experience of forced migration or homelessness.
  • A level of fluency in written and spoken English to engage with meetings and documents.
  • Prior experience of charity governance is not necessary for this role and training will be provided.

Role Summary:

·    Work alongside Chair and other board members to oversee the overall governance and strategic direction of The Magpie Project.

·    Work alongside other board members to ensure that The Magpie Project acts in accordance with its governing document, charity law, and other relevant legislation/applicable regulations.

·    Act to support the staff and volunteers, and mums’ steering committee, to ensure The Magpie Project adheres to its core values of co-production, compassion, and trauma-informed work.

·    Commit to practice collaborative, informed, carefully considered, strategic decision-making.

·    Embody our commitment to active anti-racist, trauma-informed, child-centred, relationship-based working with women and children experiencing multiple disadvantages.

Main responsibilities of the trustee:

·    Assist the staff leadership team (CEO and Chief Financial Officer) in strategic plans and regular review of the long-term strategic aims of the organisation.

·    Interrogate organisational policies, goals, targets and help to evaluate performance against these.

·    Agree to mentoring, training, and coaching as appropriate to improve your ability to govern and enhance your overall contribution to the board.

In addition:

·    Attend and be a member of committees and working groups as appropriate.

·    Take steps to keep up with the workings and achievements of The Magpie Project over and above information shared at board meetings through attending events, visiting the project, and following project news on social media, on the website, or through newsletters.

Frequency of meetings:

  • Three full board meetings (held in person where possible, in East London).
  • Three subcommittee meetings (you will be asked to join either the Safeguarding, Finance and Fundraising, or CEO Performance Management subcommittee. These meetings are held online).
  • One AGM.
  • One summer party.
  • Project visits and other meetings relating to your specific contribution within the board, by arrangement.

Please click here for further information.

Military Corrective Training Centre seeks Independent Monitoring Board Members

We are looking to appoint 9 board members to the Independent Monitoring Board of the Military Corrective Training Centre.

The overall role of a member:

The MCTC is an establishment that provides corrective training for those servicemen and women sentenced to periods of detention; it is not a prison. The principal function of the MCTC is to detain personnel, both male and female, of the three Services and civilians subject to the Armed Forces Act. The majority of those detained return to their military duties on release. A smaller number are sentenced to be dismissed from the Services after detention and are taught skills that will prepare them for civilian life.

The Independent Monitoring Board is made up of volunteers of a diverse background from the local community and is responsible for the monitoring of conditions within the MCTC, its administration and the treatment of detainees.

The Board has the authority to raise concerns to the Commandant MCTC, Provost Marshal (Army) or the Secretary of State for Defence and encourage remedial action. The MCTC IMB reports annually to the Secretary of State for Defence on the overall performance of the MCTC and the conditions, administration and treatment of members of the Armed Forces who are held in military detention. This is a monitoring role and it must be stressed the Board Members are not inspectors.

The main responsibilities will be to:

  • Monitoring that detainees are properly and fairly treated,
  • Monitor the premises, food, training, education and all other parts of the MCTC,
  • Receiving complaints and/or requests from detainees in private,
  • Investigating the complaint and/or request to conclusion,
  • Attend a minimum of 4 board meetings per annum.

 

Person Specification

Essential Criteria

  • The ability to deal with challenging and sometimes frustrating issues to a reach a conclusion over a possibly protracted time period,
  • Able to communicate at all levels and the ability to give reasoned and robust challenge,
  • The ability to work both as part of a team, but also individually, once trained, and contribute effectively,
  • Able to build positive, productive relationships through effective communication with a range of key stakeholders.

Desirable Criteria

  • Experience of report writing,
  • Interviewing experience,
  • An understanding that actions have consequences and the impact this may have upon others (for this role detainees, staff or Defence as a whole)

A broad understanding of equality, diversity and inclusion, with further training given upon appointment.

 

Please click here for further information.

Age UK Bexley seeks new Chair and Trustees – legal skills welcomed

Age UK Bexley is an independent local charity. We’ve been working in the local community to help older people for 30 years. We have 27 dedicated staff and over 70 volunteers helping us to deliver services and activities for older people in Bexley.

We are seeking to appoint a new Chair to the Board of Trustees and two additional Trustees. The Board, meets roughly six times a year and works closely with the Chief Executive (CEO) and staff to realise our strategic objectives and provide high quality services to older people. Including:

  • Information and Advice
  • Befriending
  • A wide range of activity groups and events
  • Men in Sheds
  • Day Care, Enhanced Day Care and Dementia Care

Age UK Bexley is financially sound and supported by donations from the public, income from our services, and some charitable grants.

Chair

We are looking to appoint a Chair with experience of working at a senior level possibly in the voluntary or public sector – You will be required to Chair 6 x Board meetings a year the AGM and an annual training day and other occasional meetings You will also meet regularly with the CEO. You will need to have some availability during the day and be willing to commit to around 10 hours a month.

Trustees

We have a good mix of skills on our Board, however there are gaps and we are particularly interested in applicants with a background in HR, Legal or Digital Marketing – though not essential. Trustees are expected to attend 6 x Board meetings a year 1 x AGM and an annual training day. Induction training will be provided. Role description attached.

Age UK Bexley is committed to equality and values diversity.

You can download the forms below to find out more about the roles and you can also visit our website for more information about our organisation.

 

Please click here for further information.

England-wide learning disability charity seeks new Trustee with law expertise

SWALLOW is a user led charity, supporting teenagers and adults with learning disabilities to live independent and fulfilling lives.  We need Trustees to use their skills and experience to drive the organisation forward.

What will you be doing?

We are looking for committed individuals to expand the range of Trustee skills.  We require dynamic and motivated people who are sympathetic to the aims and objectives of SWALLOW to fulfil these voluntary duties.  We expect Trustees to contribute actively to the Board by giving strategic direction; setting overall policy; defining goals and setting targets; evaluating performance; ensuring the charity’s effective and efficient administration and financial stability.We want to have a wide range of people on the Board, there is no need to have Trustee experience to apply.  An interest in supporting people with learning disabilities is necessary.  In addition, on the basis of a recent skills audit, we are looking for someone with legal skills and/or financial background, to deepen our expertise in those areasTrustees are expected to

  • attend up to eight meetings a year including six weekly Board meetings (all currently on Monday evenings) and an annual planning day;
  • contribute advice and support on an ad hoc basis;
  • attend events.All travel and out of pocket expenses will be paid.  Applicants will be subject to an enhanced DBS check.

What are we looking for?

We want to have a wide range of people on the Board, there is no need to have Trustee experience to apply.  An interest in supporting people with learning disabilities is necessary.  In addition, on the basis of a recent skills audit, we are looking for someone with legal skills and/or financial background, to deepen our expertise in those areas

What difference will you make?

You will play an important role in helping people with learning difficulties to flourish in their local community and generally in their everyday lives.

Before you apply

  • Please apply through Reach in the first instance. Shortlisted candidates will be asked to complete our additional application form.
  • Please contact us via Reach with any questions.
  • Interviews will be an informal Zoom chat with the Chair of Trustees & Chief Executive.

Please click here for further information.

Charity fighting violence against women and girls seeks new Trustee with law expertise

Being a trustee of Quetzal is one of the most powerful ways in which you can contribute to a local organisation that works to mitigate the effects of VAWG.

As a trustee you have one of the most important and exciting roles within a charity. With the CEO, you will set the direction of the organisation and are ultimately responsible for ensuring it achieves its aims.

We welcome volunteers from any background but would particularly like to speak to you if you have skills in the following areas:

  • Finance
  • Law
  • Administration

As a trustee, you play an integral part in the good governance of a charity, not only ensuring that the organisation remains sustainable but ensuring that it adheres closely to its mission and works in the interests of its beneficiaries.

As well as being an impactful and rewarding voluntary position, the strategic experience which is gained through trusteeship can have an immediate and powerful impact upon your career.

What is the role of the Board of Trustees?

  • Responsible for the overall governance and strategic direction of the organisation
  • Ensures that the organisation pursues its objects as defined in its governing document, charity law, company law and other relevant legislation/regulations.
  • Working in partnership with the CEO to support staff members and volunteers, helping them achieve the aims of the organisation.
  • Engage in stimulating, well-rounded and carefully considered strategic decision-making to help the organisation develop and meet the needs of its service users.

What are the main duties of a Trustee?

  • Assist in the formulation of strategic plans and regular review of long-term strategic aims of the charity.
  • Assist in the development of organisational policies, procedures, defining of goals, targets and the evaluation of performance against agreed targets.
  • Assist in maintaining the legal and financial integrity of the organisation and supporting the continuation of the project
  • Maintain an oversight of any risk to reputation and/or financial standing of the organisation and protect and manage its property.
  • Represent the organisation at appropriate events, meetings or functions
  • Fostering relations with potential partners.
  • Support the Chair in the review of any external complaints as defined by the organisation’s complaints procedure

Key Qualities of Trustees

  • Commitment to Quetzal’s, aims and values.
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of Trusteeship (training provided)
  • Good communication and interpersonal skills and the ability to respect the confidences of colleagues.
  • Balancing tact and diplomacy with willingness to challenge and constructively criticise.

Time Commitment

The Board meets every two months on a Thursday at 6.00pm usually via zoom and trustees are asked to be available for the majority of these meetings.  In addition to Board Meetings, other contact, usually electronic or by telephone, will also be necessary.

 

Please click here for further information.

Refugee youth charity ‘Our Second Home’ seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

Our Second Home is a youth movement that helps migrants and refugees to flourish in the place that they call home. Through residentials and leadership training, we empower our members to create community and build leadership.

Using a model of peer leadership and regular activity, we are creating a participant-led social movement. We do this through three core programmes to refugees and migrants aged 14 and above: school holiday residentials, a leadership training programme for graduates of the residentials, and regular movement building activities for our leaders. While youth movements like ours have existed for over a century, OSH is the first catering directly toward refugees and migrants. We are guided by 5 core values: the value of home; acting with, not for; building leaders; social action; care and support.

We began as a summer residential for 25 young people, and are now a movement of 148 young people from 25 countries based now in London, Essex & Newcastle. We officially became a charity in January 2022, and are now looking for one last piece of the puzzle: a trustee with a legal background.

You will have a passion for human rights and immigration law, but we are happy to hear from people with a wide variety of specialisms. We particularly encourage applications from women, disabled, and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates, and those who have lived experience of the asylum system.

There are 4 trustee board meetings a year, and we also encourage our trustees to roll up their sleeves and help out at our residentials.

We are looking for a trustee with legal expertise who can help complete our founding trustee board. We seek to appoint based on skills, and other interests and skills we look for in board members include:

  • Safeguarding and welfare of vulnerable young people
  • Strategic development
  • Knowledge of the UK refugee sector
  • Financial acumen
  • Legal expertise, in particular around charity law and/or refugee and immigration law
  • Fundraising
  • Communications & PR
  • Monitoring and evaluating impact
  • Logistical or event management expertise

We particularly encourage applications from women, disabled, and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates, and those who have lived experience of being a refugee.

Please click here for further information.

South West Coast Path Association in Plymouth seeks new Trustees

We are now looking for new Trustees to help drive forward the South West Coast Path Association. Trustees are a vital part in the governance and oversight of the charity. We will be celebrating our 50th year in 2023 and are looking to fill two vacant trustee positions. We’re currently especially interested in people with skills and experience in the areas of accounting, IT strategy, and charity legal framework.

We are committed to improving the diversity of our Board and we particularly welcome applications from women, those in the ethnic minority communities, and people with disabilities.

If you’re interested in getting involved download a trustee prospectus.

 

Please click here for further information.

War Child UK seeks to appoint lawyer to its board of trustees

War Child UK was established in 1993 as a response to the brutal effects of conflict on children during the Balkans war. Its vision is of a world in which the lives of children are no longer torn apart by war, with a mission to protect, educate, and stand up for the rights of children affected by conflict.

War Child UK aims to respond to conflict emergencies early, bringing life-saving child protection and psycho-social support to children in acutely vulnerable situations as soon as possible. The mission also extends through post-conflict to recovery phases, meaning that it stays with affected populations until the impact of conflict is no longer the primary driver of issues that need to be addressed.

War Child has grown rapidly over the past few years and income has increased from approximately £3.5m per year in 2011, to £17m in 2020, thereby significantly expanding its capabilities and reach. More detail can be found in the annual report and accounts here. From 5,000 programme participants in 2008, to over 170,000 in 2020, War Child is reaching an increasing number of children each year. Its programming has become more efficient, more professionally managed, and more consistent across the countries in which it works.

The charity is now a trusted partner of the UN and national donors, receiving significant support from UN emergency pooled funds, UNHCR and UNICEF, in emergency response programmes, with longer term programmes funded by UK Aid, Dubai Cares, EU development funds, and other high quality donors. In addition to individual donor funding, War Child adopts creative methods to raise awareness and diversify funding streams. Its newly established in-house recording label demonstrates its commitment to raising awareness and funds through music. Additionally, its successful partnerships with Sports Interactive through Football Manager, Google, and Take-Two also contribute to its overall mission to provide support to children in conflict-ridden zones.

The conflicts in Afghanistan and Ukraine have been a focus for War Child UK in recent months. In Afghanistan, the charity has quadrupled its staff numbers and budget to safeguard children facing the consequences of economic collapse. In Ukraine, it continues to respond to the needs of vulnerable children and young people who have fled the country as well as delivering online educational tools across the region.

War Child is fully committed to the Core Humanitarian Standards, and has strong internal systems for safeguarding, security, and essential standards. For more information, War Child UK’s Child Safeguarding policy can be found here and its Code of Conduct can be found here.

 

Role specification

War Child’s Board of Trustees is made up of a number of experienced individuals who play an important role in making sure that the organisation operates effectively, and that it achieves its charitable aims.

The Board is responsible for overseeing the governance of all War Child’s work and delegates the day-to-day management to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Senior Leadership Team (SLT). Trustees work together to provide constructive challenge and support as necessary, acting as a sounding board on strategic matters and drawing on their own expertise and experiences.

The Board has delegated specific responsibilities to two Sub-Committees. This particular Trustee would sit on the Audit and Risk Committee, which is responsible for ensuring that War Child manages its risks and has strong internal controls.

 

Person specification

As part of succession planning, War Child UK seeks a new Trustee with legal expertise to join its Board. You will be a qualified lawyer with experience in the area of corporate law.

Applicants will bring a solid understanding of corporate law; given potential considerations around a merger to further its impact internationally, experience in corporate restructuring / M&A would be useful but not necessary. War Child UK is a limited company with charitable status so an understanding of charity law would also be welcome.

The successful candidate will demonstrate a deep commitment to children in acute need and will be excited to help War Child maintain its high standards of effectiveness and organisational integrity.

For further information, please get in touch directly with www.nurole.com  enquiries@nurole.com

The Blackheath Conservatoire for Arts, Music and Drama seeks new Trustee – would suit employment lawyer

The Blackheath Conservatoire for Arts, Music and Drama (“The Conservatoire”) is an arts charity operating from its historic Victorian building in Blackheath, South East London. It offers high quality and innovative individual and group lessons in music, art and drama.

The Conservatoire attracts around 2,000 student interactions a week, with classes and tuition delivered by its network of 120 freelance tutors, and is open seven days a week. The Conservatoire’s values include excellence, creativity, sustainability, and inclusivity – and it provides a vibrant and welcoming space which will soon include a cafe, to inspire and nurture its diverse community of life-long learners.

The Conservatoire’s belief is that arts education is fundamental to personal enrichment, societal wellbeing and community cohesion and should be accessible to people of all backgrounds, abilities and ages. Part of its social mission is to offer bursaries for individuals who would otherwise be unable to access private tuition, along with a range of other charitable arts programmes. The Conservatoire plays a large part in the local community, and has partnerships with schools, hospitals, and care institutions providing access to music lessons and choir performances.

Culture

The Conservatoire’s Trustees operate collaboratively, pragmatically and are approachable. The Board is supportive of the senior leadership team, while providing constructive challenge.

Role specification

The Conservatoire seeks to appoint four Trustees with a strong alignment with its vision and mission who will be proactive in helping it to grow and succeed. In addition to the formal Board and committee meetings, Trustees will be willing to undertake informal engagement with the charity, including providing strategic advice on an ad hoc basis to the management team. Trustees will be expected to use their specific knowledge and experience to help the Board reach sound decisions; assist the senior leadership team with advice as required; and keep informed about, and support as appropriate, the activities of the organisation.

Responsibilities of the Trustee may include:

  • Offering strategic support, guidance and constructive challenge to the leadership team and provide effective oversight
  • Contributing to the Board’s collective role in setting the charity’s strategic direction and evaluating performance against agreed targets
  • Ensuring that the charity uses its resources in line with its charitable objects
  • Carrying out the core responsibilities of charity governance, as set out in Charity Commission Guidance
  • Safeguarding the reputation and values of The Conservatoire and have an active concern for diversity and inclusion, and a commitment to increasing the impact of the charity
  • Acting as an ambassador for the charity and using their networks to promote its work and, where appropriate, to seek funding
  • Have a commitment to integrity, honesty, accountability and openness
  • Attending and engaging in training and events as required, for example, safeguarding

 

Person specification

The successful candidate(s) may have experience in one, or more, of the following areas:

Financial and accounting acumen: Candidates should have in-depth experience of working directly with financial and accounting issues. Experience could be either in a leadership role of a finance function or as a director or partner of a professional services firm in this area. Candidates will be able to lead the Board in debates about complex financial and accounting matters and preferably be a chartered accountant.

Risk management, including health and safety: Candidates should have industry experience in risk management to lead the Board on the identification and management of risks to the organisation. The Trustee will ideally have recognised qualifications and industry experience in Health and Safety.

Fundraising: Candidates must demonstrate a successful track record of strong professional fundraising experience, and ideally in Public Sector Trusts and Foundations fundraising. They will have a strong network with grant-giving charities and foundations or similar, which can be leveraged to raise funds for The Conservatoire.

Digital transformation: Candidates will be able to demonstrate a previous successful track record of assisting and overseeing an organisation through a period of digital growth and transition, to enable them to advise the Board on this.

Human resource management/employment lawyer: Candidates will bring a deep understanding of human resources strategies of organisations of a similar size to that of The Conservatoire. Further, candidates should also have a solid and practical understanding of UK employment law, so that they can be the Board’s lead on matters relating to HR policies and procedures.

Building expertise in historic/listed buildings: Candidates will be able to advise on the maintenance, management and development of The Conservatoire’s listed historical buildings. This candidate would ideally be able to advise the Board on priorities and strategies for the buildings’ restoration and up-keep.

Physical presence from Trustees is required from time-to-time, so The Conservatoire would ideally like to hear from candidates based in South East London, but are equally keen to hear from candidates who have a strong understanding of the above skills and are located farther afield with connections to South East London. Previous charity experience would be ideal for these Trustee appointments, but is not a requirement. The Conservatoire is open to appointing first-time Trustees to its Board.

The Conservatoire is committed to diversifying its Board, please see the Diversity section for more information. The Conservatoire seeks to appoint Trustees who are collaborative, pragmatic, approachable and will have the ability to constructively challenge the senior leadership team and fellow Trustees, as well as being supportive. The Conservatoire’s Trustees act as ambassadors for the charity’s mission and cause, so whilst previous arts experience is not a requirement for this appointment, it is imperative that Trustees have a passion for art, music and drama and the role it can play in transforming lives.

This is a ‘Quick Apply’ opportunity which only requires candidates to submit their CV and confirm their interest in the role. Should the client be interested in considering them further, candidates will be willing to provide a brief written outline of their motivation; should they be called to interview, candidates will be willing to take reasonable steps to meet the client (at minimum by video call or equivalent).

Board composition

For more information about The Conservatoire’s Trustees, please see here.

Diversity

The Conservatoire welcomes applications from everyone regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, belief or disability. As men, individuals early in their career, and individuals from an ethnic minority background are currently under-represented on the Board, applications from those individuals would be particularly encouraged. All appointments will be made on merit, following a fair and transparent process. In line with the Equality Act 2010, however, the organisation may employ positive action where candidates from underrepresented groups can demonstrate their ability to perform the role equally well.

Terms of appointment

This role is unremunerated, and reasonable, pre-agreed travel expenses will be reimbursed. The time commitment for this role is estimated at 12-15 days per year. The Conservatoire’s Board meets every two months, with an annual strategy-day in March, and Trustees will be expected to provide additional ad hoc engagement where needed and will contribute one day per month to support projects and if possible attend events at The Conservatoire. The appointment is for a four-year term, which can be renewed once at the discretion of the Board.

 

Please contact www.nurole.com enquiries@nurole.com for further information.

Christian grant-making charity ‘Benefact Trust’ seeks new Trustee – lawyer sought

Benefact Trust Limited (formerly Allchurches Trust Limited) is an independent registered charity established in 1972, which seeks to promote the Christian faith and other charitable purposes. The charity is incorporated as a company limited by guarantee with a membership body. The Trust was originally founded by Ecclesiastical Insurance Office plc (EIO) to preserve the independence of that company and to ensure that EIO’s founding principles, to protect the Anglican Church and return profits to the Church’s and other charitable work, were safeguarded.

Since its incorporation, the activities of the Trust have remained the promotion of the Christian religion and values, providing a broad range of grants to Anglican churches, churches of other Christian denominations and charitable organisations with an emphasis on heritage, supporting those in need and strengthening communities. Through its grant programmes, the Trust aims to make a positive difference to people’s lives. Benefact Trust is the charitable owner of the Benefact Group and largely derives its income from its trading subsidiaries, and in particular Ecclesiastical Insurance Office plc. In addition, the Trust receives donations from Methodist Insurance PLC (which are designated by the Trustees to support the Methodist Church) and investment income generated from the charity’s Expendable Endowment Fund. The Trust does not fund-raise.

The Trust is a major grant funder and in 2021, it donated £19.3m in support of Christian churches and charities, compared with £23.3m in 2020. The 2020 donation reflected the Trust’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and the desire to help beneficiaries respond to the emerging challenges. Over the past five years the Trust has given over £100m in grants and these are used to benefit people of all religions denominations and none.

Role specification

The successful candidate will bring a governance mindset which will assist the Board in dealing with legal and regulatory matters.

In a more general sense, the key duties of Trustees include:

  • Ensuring that the organisation complies with the Trust’s constitution, charity law and any other relevant legislation or regulations
  • Ensuring that the organisation pursues its objectives
  • Contributing actively to the Board of Trustees’ role in giving firm strategic direction to the charity, setting overall policy, defining goals and setting targets and evaluating performance against agreed targets and budgets
  • Safeguarding the good name and values of the charity
  • Ensuring the effective and efficient administration and financial stability of the organisation

 

Person specification

The Benefact Trust’s Board of Trustees ensure that assets and resources are only used for the strategic purposes of the charity and that it is run in accordance with its constitution, charity law and other applicable laws and regulations. The Trust is fortunate to have a board with a broad range of skills, and is looking to add to the skill sets represented through this appointment.

The Benefact Trust is looking for someone with legal governance experience expertise to join the Board. The successful candidate will have gained the relevant skills working as a lawyer or as a chartered secretary, and will have experience of working with legal issues, a strong understanding of risk management, and be comfortable with scrutinising legal issues which come before the Board.

Other desirable, but non-essential, characteristics for this appointment would be charity experience (specifically, experience in charity law) and an understanding of the religious ethos of the Trust and support for the charity’s mission. Benefact Trust has confirmed that the successful candidate does not need to personally follow the Christian faith.

 

Board composition

Tim Carroll, Chair
Michael Arlington
Caroline Banszky
Paul Davis
Very Revd Jane Hedges
Stephen Hudson
Sir Stephen Lamport GCVO DL
The Venerable Karen Lund
Sir Laurie Magnus
Chris Moulder
David Smart

Time commitment

The appointment for this role is unremunerated but all pre-agreed, reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed. The time commitments for this role includes four Board meetings per year. The Trustee may be asked to join one of the Trust’s additional Sub-committees for an additional three meetings per year. The Trustee will also be expected to attend the two annual strategy away days, as well as be asked to engage on a further ad hoc basis. Meetings are currently being held in a hybrid of both virtual and in-person attendance.

 

For further information, please get in touch directly with www.nurole.com  enquiries@nurole.com

Domestic abuse charity ‘The Change Project’ seeks new Trustee – legal expertise sought

The Change Project was established in 2017 to change harmful relationships to create positive futures for children, victims, and perpetrators.

1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men experience domestic abuse every year. This equates to two million people in the UK – these are only the figures that are reported to health and the police and do not estimate the abuse behind closed doors.

It is estimated that 130,000 children live in abusive homes.

The Change Project was created to support people to achieve a life free of abuse. We aim to achieve this through increasing the safety of victims, changing the behaviour of perpetrators, reducing the impact of domestic violence for future generations, and educating professionals and the public about domestic abuse.

The Change Project’s services include:

  • Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme: a RESPECT accredited, 27-week structured group programme, designed to engage perpetrators and work with them to understand their behaviour.
  • The Change Hub: addresses domestic abuse in the community. Domestic Violence Awareness Practitioners deliver one-to-one behaviour change interventions matched to the level of risk and the client’s individual circumstances.
  • Centre Counselling: provides counselling to families, couples, and individuals to promote wellbeing through healthy relationships. We address sexual problems through counselling and psychosexual therapy covering all aspects of relationships.

The Change Project’s influence in the field of domestic abuse has continued to grow, but our work is not done. There are more than 100,000 people in the UK at imminent risk of serious injury. Services rightly need to focus on meeting the needs of victims, but this means only 1% of perpetrators get specialist intervention that might help prevent future abusive behaviour.

We are now looking to grow our board through the appointment of a new Chair and two trustees.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been challenging, creating a “perfect storm” for an increase in domestic abuse related incidents, and thus more people needing our services.

Regrettably, unable to continue many services during the pandemic lockdown, the charity experienced a decline in income and the size of our organisation was downsized.

As we continue to rebuild with a desire to scale, grow, and have a greater impact, we are looking for a new Chair and trustees who can support us to create our next strategy. The focus will be on growing our organisation, responding to national need, expanding our services, establishing our brand, and extending our reputation for quality.

To achieve this, we are looking for a Chair who can lead us in our next strategic phase, bring strong understanding of charity governance and a commercial lens to our organisation.

For our new trustees, we are interested in people who bring a wealth of experiences including, but not limited to, a domestic abuse specialist, commissioning and contracting, safeguarding, legal and HR. We are looking for a highly committed and a more diverse board who can support us to achieve growth and impact while also diversify our income.

The board meets quarterly in the evening for 1.5 hours. Currently, the board meets virtually but would like to have a mix of face to face and virtual in the future. The expected time commitment for the Chair is 1-2 days per month, while for trustees this is expected to be half a day a month.

 

Please click here for further information.

Philosophy for children charity ‘Sapere’ seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

SAPERE is the exciting, dynamic national charity that trains education professionals to deliver Philosophy for Children (P4C).

We are seeking a trustee with legal experience to support our work by joining our Board.

What will you be doing?

SAPERE is the exciting, dynamic national charity that trains education professionals to deliver Philosophy for Children (P4C). Research shows that P4C has the power to transform children’s communication and thinking skills.

We are seeking three new trustees to support our work by joining our Board. We are looking for trustees passionate about children’s education and development.

We particularly encourage candidates who can help increase the diversity of the board and the inclusivity of the charity. We also encourage candidates with experience in one or more of the below areas to apply:

  • Legal experience in charity, commercial or employment law
  • Strategic planning
  • Business management

What are we looking for?

We are seeking a dynamic legal professional to work closely with our Co-leaders and the Board to
maintain an overview of the regulatory environment and our contractual obligations, and support strong
governance. You will have strategic vision and experience and expertise in charity law, commercial law or
employment law. We welcome those who share our values: thinking, speaking and acting in a caring
(respectful), collaborative, creative and critical manner. We encourage candidates who can help increase
the diversity of the Board so as to make our organisation more inclusive.

We encourage candidates with experience in one or more of the below areas to apply:

  • Legal experience in charity, commercial or employment law
  • Strategic planning
  • Business management
  • Project management, IT and tech background
  • Commitment to Equal opportunities and Diversity
  • Commitment to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children: willing to undertake safeguarding training

Please click here for further information.

Music charity ‘World Heart Beat Examinations Board’ seeks new Trustee with legal skills

World Heart Beat is an organisation who love music! Its teaching, its creativity, its joy, emotion and connectivity. We also love performance- and now we offer examinations. This combination has the potential to change lives.

In particular we love to offer the equality deserved to instruments from a diverse array of cultural backgrounds. Be on side with music and equality…

WHB is becoming an awarding organisation approved by Ofqual. Our first award will be in tabla. There are very few opportunities for musicians of this percussive instrument to gain the deserved recognition for their skills, knowledge and understanding of their chose field of music. As part of our new structure we require a new Governing Body to have oversight of the examinations board. This requires approximately 3-6 meetings a year and the management of some emails and documentation such as outcome data and revenue. The Governing Body has devolved decision making responsibility from the Board of Directors. The role is one of critical friend to whom the Examination Board’s Quality Committee report. It is the role of each Governor to ensure that all compliance is in place and remains the case and report the maintenance of this to the board of directors.  Should any complaints or appeals reach a certain stage the Governing Body would have involvement as well.

As  Governor of the World Heart Beat Examination Board you will be contributing to opening opportunities for young people and old to gain recognition for their skills, knowledge and understanding of the music of instruments not commonly given the same space as instruments from more conventional western genres.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for three individuals for our Governing Body.  Having been a Governor on a school board or similar would be good experience. Any role current or previously in assessment or examinations would also be useful. Someone who has a legal background would have skills and knowledge that are likely to be useful to the group. The role if very much as critical friend. A person to ask the questions that one might not have thought of or the questions that complete checks and balances are all in order. To understand the Conditions of Regularity that apply to the examining board and to reliably confirm the boards compliance with these conditions. Conflict of interests is a key aspect of concern and the governor will always seek to ensure that all conflicts are aired and appropriately mitigated for.

The Governors on the body should consider risks to the examinations board and ensure the future or validity of the examinations board is always secure.

So being able to ask clarifying questions is a key skill.

Asking questions with humility and openness is another.

Please click here for further information.

Support charity in Sussex ‘Impact Initiatives’ seeks new Trustee

Trustees hold legal responsibility for the organisations overall direction and decision making. They meet quarterly and delegate the day to day management to the CEO and Senior Management Team who provide reports for each meeting.

Impact Initiatives has built a reputation for innovation, developing and delivering services inline with the needs of those who use them for over 40 years. We work across Sussex with people of all ages. Our model of a Central Team providing IT, finance, facilities, HR and business development support ensures each specialist manager can focus on their service delivery and development and ensures value for money for funders through the maximum possible going into direct service delivery.

Our services include supported housing for young women, mental health support for 13 – 19 year old’s, Advocacy and employment support for adults with disabilities and services and support for older people.

We are seeking to strengthen our Board of Trustees by recruiting three more people to join our longer standing, friendly team. We will be stronger if trustees bring a range of experience and understanding of our service users and represent a range of views.

Our Trustees meet four times each year with additional meetings as and when needed. Finance, business development and service delivery reports are circulated before meetings so any queries can be answered prior to the meeting where they are discussed. Trustees check and support the CEO and Senior Management Team to deliver the agreed business plan.

The most important qualities needed in a trustee are a commitment to, and a passion for the values of the organisation and an understanding of some of the issues our service users face.

Trustees must be aged 18+ and be willing to discuss ideas and options to help make decisions in the best interests of the charity and its service users.

Experience of attending and contributing to meetings is helpful and we would particularly welcome people with legal, financial or IT expertise.

We will be stronger if trustees bring a range of experience and understanding of our service users and represent a range of views.

Please click here for further information.

The Lullaby Trust seeks new Trustee with legal experience

The Lullaby Trust’s vision is an end to all unexplained deaths of babies and young children and support for every family whose baby or child has died. We have been working to save babies’ lives for 50 years, and since we formed as The Foundation for the Study of Sudden Infant Deaths (FSID) in 1971 we have played a key role in the reduction of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) by over 80%.

We remain a small organisation with a loud voice – could you help us to move forward and make more of a difference?

We are looking to recruit a number of additional Board Members in 2022. You don’t need any previous experience of board or leadership roles to apply. We will provide training and support in your role as a trustee. We are looking for commitment, enthusiasm, and to fill some of the skills gaps we have identified.

We welcome applications from those with skills and experience in the following areas:

• Medical – particularly paediatrics and child health
• Legal
• Fundraising
• Technology

 

Please click here for further information.

The Brun Bear Foundation seeks legal support

We are seeking a legal eagle to guide us on a range of legal, operational and other matters.

We support a mix of community, medical and animal welfare causes – and are inclusive and entrepreneurial in our approach.

What will you be doing?

The legal eagle will advise and guide us on  a range of legal, operational and other matters. We have four fundraising streams spanning children’s books and education; community and cultural events; pop up restaurants and supper clubs and epic adventures.

The volunteer will report directly to the board and work closely with the Founder.

The key deliverable is compliance and there is flexibility in how the role can be approached and performed.

What are we looking for?

The successful candidate will be:

Legally qualified with a proven track record of pro bono legal work.

Share and be supportive of the charity’s aims and objectives.

Be proactive in their approach and ready for early responsibility.

What difference will you make?

This is a perfect role for a legally experienced professional with a passion for community, medical and animal welfare projects.

Our ethos is open and inclusive and our projects are diverse and touch on animal rights, climate change, equality, diversity and Inclusion and mental health to name just a few.

We are a small charity with a big heart – and big ambitions. Our legal eagle will keep us not only compliant, but one step of the game and be able to draw on the full gamut of their legal and wider experience.

Please click here for further information.

Connect: North Korea seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

Connect: North Korea is a London-based organisation which enables North Korean escapees to build the new lives they deserve.  It supports North Koreans to build their resilience. We are recruiting at least 1 new trustee with legal expertise.

Connect: North Korea is a sister charity of Korea Future Initiative (T/A Korea Future). Both charities are governed by the same Board of Trustees.

Korea Future investigates human rights violations in North Korea to accelerate justice and support accountability. It is currently undertaking a multi-year documentation project focused on the North Korean penal system. It maintains offices in London and Seoul.

We are recruiting at least 1 new trustee with expertise in international human rights and/or immigration law to join our Board. The ideal candidate will have experience as a trustee in the charity sector and have knowledge of charity law.

Trustees are appointed for a 3-year term and they sit on the board of both organisations. The board is made up of 7 independent trustees who sit with the Chief Executive Officer of both organisations at Trustee meetings.

TRUSTEE EXPERIENCE

We are seeking at least 1 person with extensive international human rights and/or immigration law experience to join our team. The ideal candidate will have previous trustee experience and knowledge of charity law.

The role will involve:

  • Offering legal expertise to trustees and the senior management team on the development and execution of the organisations’ strategic plans.
  • Ensuring the organisation complies with statutory and regulatory requirements from a legal perspective
  • Support the organisations to identity legal risks.

KEY PERFORMANCE AREAS FOR ALL TRUSTEES

  • Provides guidance for the organisations within a framework of prudent and effective controls which enable risks to be assessed and managed
  • As part of the board sets the strategic aims of the charities, ensures that the necessary financial and human resources are in place for the organisation to meet its objectives.
  • Sets the values and standards of the organisations and ensures that their obligations to their stakeholders are understood and met
  • Ensures that effective Governance and control procedures are in place within the organisations

Please click here for further information.

The move from Lawyer to Entrepreneur with Calvin Walker

Calvin had more than 25 years’ experience as an international project finance lawyer, as a partner at Allen & Overy and Baker McKenzie, before leaving his legal practice behind in 2019, and moving into training, executive and international  consulting roles.  A commercial and entrepreneurial portfolio.

With a couple of others, he set up CCC Training, exclusively offering project finance training for those working in the field; he has become legal and commercial director for a former client, Veleswater, a start-up providing a tradable index on water pricing; and he remains engaged with the legal world internationally through a consulting role with Bonnelli Erede.

Calvin will share with members the paths he has taken so far, the decisions that have shaped this journey, and the opportunities he hopes will come next.  Anyone considering a move into their own business, or an executive role elsewhere would be foolish to miss this interesting session.

A Coach’s Perspective on Lawyers with Niall Foster

Through our NED skills course, Niall has now helped many BCKR lawyers improve their chances of getting roles outside the law and we’re delighted he has agreed to share a little of his wisdom with all members at this session.  An MBA lecturer, change consultant, or coach at organisations as diverse as EDF Trading, HMRC, Peabody, the East African Seed Company in Nairobi and Kyiv National Economics University, Niall is well placed to help us understand how lawyers come across against the competition, and how just a few changes in approach and plenty of practice can make the path to portfolio life much easier.

 

 

Stefan Stern – The Business Journalist View

Stefan Stern is a leading journalist and author on management, and is also Visiting Professor in management practice at Bayes Business School (formerly Cass) and a Fellow of the RSA.  He was director of the think tank, the High Pay Centre, from 2015 to 2018.  Stefan drew on his extensive experience of writing and teaching about the business world to share his thoughts on the NED role (and what makes a ‘good’ NED) as well as some of the issues which boards are (or should be) facing – executive pay being one.

His career in journalism has included stints at Euromoney, the BBC, Management Today and the Financial Times, (where he was the management columnist). He continues to write for the FT and the Guardian, among other titles.  He is the author of several books, including, “Myths of Management – what people get wrong about being the boss” (with Prof. Cary Cooper) and “How To Be A Better Leader”. His latest book, “The Lady Macbeth Guide to Ambition”, will be out in the autumn.

BGI/National Videogame Museum in Yorkshire seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

The charity is seeking 3 new trustees to help govern the charity and the National Videogame Museum through its next stage of growth.

The requirements for the new trustee roles are as follows:

All candidates: to distil complex information; offer pragmatic advice; collaborate and communicate effectively; foster relationships and build support for the charity; inspire trust and confidence through ambassadorial and influencing skills.

Finance: Oversee the charity’s financial affairs; monitor its financial health; ensure robust financial processes; oversee annual audits; and join our finance sub-committee.

Legal/Governance: Oversee matters of governance and ensure all relevant governance policies and processes are set up and maintained; and to join our Governance sub-committee.

HR: Oversee personnel best practice and ensure all relevant human resource policies and processes are set up and maintained.

Candidates from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply by downloading this Trustee pack also found on our trustee recruitment page: https://thebgi.uk/become-a-trustee/

About the BGI

The BGI is a national voice for videogame culture, heritage and education which empowers people from all backgrounds.

We inspire everyone to play, collaborate and learn through our unique National Videogame Museum, our Collection, our multi award-winning learning programmes and our groundbreaking new vocational programmes.

We make our work accessible and inclusive to everyone, including people from disadvantaged communities, women, LGBTQI+, people of colour, people with disabilities, people of faith and older people.

By sharing stories how videogames can change people’s lives, we will inspire the public and uncover new opportunities, no matter their background.

We’re a young but rapidly growing charity that is committed to creating a diverse and flexible working environment. We’re seeking  candidates from all backgrounds who demonstrate a desire to progress our social mission.

 

Please click here for further information.

APT Gallery & Studios in London SE8 seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

APT Gallery & Studios (APT) is looking to recruit up to five new Trustees to join our active and engaged Board.

This is an exciting time for APT, as we work to ensure we have a resilient organisation for the future.  The Trustees have undergone a process of internal evaluation over the last year, identifying skills gaps in our current board, to ensure that APT is governed with the expertise and diversity it requires to thrive.

There are currently 5 APT Trustees, each having a specific area of responsibility towards realising the aims of the Charity.     We are now looking for up to 5 candidates to strengthen the skillset of the board, with skills and experience in one or more of the following areas:

  • Artist or Curator with an excellent industry profile
  • Legal expert with understanding of charity, property and employment law 
  • Public sector experience with knowledge of local communities in South London or a connection to our local area
  • Fundraiser with experience in Income generation, Trust& Foundations and public funding.
  • Financial professional with knowledge of charity financing

We strongly encourage individuals from diverse backgrounds to apply, as we are keen for our work to be informed by and representative of the diverse communities we serve.

Deadline for applications 30 May 2022

For further details and to download a Trustee Pack please visit our website: www.aptstudios.org

Medical charity ‘The Mary How Trust’ seeks to appoint new Trustee with legal expertise

The Mary How Trust provides health screenings to asymptomatic clients, detecting onset of life threatening illness. Instead of a fee, we request a donation based on person’s ability to pay, we are seeking Trustees.

The current Trustees provide a diverse range of skills and knowledge. However, the Charity is growing in size and stature, and, in consequence, we are looking to recruit new Trustees to our Board. In addition, we are also seeking Trustees with qualifications, skills and experience in Medical, Law, Fundraising and Marketing/PR. This is an exciting time to join us as the Trust develops its future vision.

 

What are we looking for?

Medical – An enthusiastic, highly motivated person who is a current, semi-retired or recently retired GP or Doctor, Radiologist, Sonographer, Biomedical Scientist, Head Nurse or similar who will oversee our clinical governance.

You will provide the Board of Trustees, and senior management team with advice on issues relating to medical matters and will use those skills to help us achieve ambitious and positive outcomes for our community. Good general clinical knowledge and an active interest in preventative health and early diagnosis of life threating diseases are both essential.

Law – You should have a strong background as a general solicitor, preferably with a good knowledge of company and/or charity law. You will be expected to be able to overview constitutional documentation, policies, agreements, with an input into growing legacy income, on occasion working closely with our senior management team.

Preferably a qualified legal professional to take a lead role on the board to ensure that a culture of compliance with laws and regulations is promoted and integral within the organisation and in delivery of our services. You will be able to use your legal knowledge to help inform the organisations’ strategic plan and provide the board with updates on legal issues that arise on an ad hoc basis.

Fundraising & Marketing – This role will help shape our fundraising, marketing, and communications plan to broaden awareness of who we are and what we do, helping to increase our visibility to a wider audience. You will ideally have fundraising, marketing and/or PR experience, including use of social media and be able to actively participate in fundraising and publicity discussions. You will use your skills, knowledge, and experience to increase awareness and financial support. Experience of the charity sector would be a bonus.

All candidates will need to demonstrate a strong and visible passion and commitment to the charity, its values and objectives together with a proven track record of sound judgement and effective decision making, strong inter-personal and relationship building abilities, tact and diplomacy, with the ability to listen and engage effectively.

What difference will you make?

Within The Mary How Trust the Board of Trustees are the final decision making authority. As a Trustee you will fulfil an important role within the Organisation ensuring, with the other Trustees, that The Mary How Trust functions within the legal and financial requirements of both a company and charitable organisation and strives to achieve best practice.  You will bring your knowledge, skills and passion to benefit the Charity and  ensure our continued strategic direction.

In addition, individuals will need a personal commitment and empathy with our vision and values and a willingness to work with other Trustees, the chief executive and senior management team, for which day to day operations are delegated. Trustees also act as ambassadors for the charity and, where applicable, assist in the building of partnerships and networks to further our collaboration with a wide range of partners.

This is a key role in our organisation. Your leadership and commitment will ensure we continue to provide and extend our range of much-needed health screenings to our beneficiaries.

Please click here for further information.

RSPCA in Kent seeks new branch trustee with legal background

This is an exciting opportunity to pass on your legal and GDPR compliance expertise whilst helping the RSPCA to; promote kindness and prevent animal cruelty, reach out to more supporters, and influence how we do things.

Overview of the Branch Trustee – Legal and GDPR opportunity

We are looking for an enthusiastic and passionate person, with a legal background, who could devote their time to volunteer as a trustee at our Kent North West Branch and support us with GDPR compliance.

Alongside passing on your expertise, this opportunity will give you the chance to influence how we care for and prevent cruelty to animals and drive the implementation of key initiatives. You will serve on the governing body of the charity and be instrumental, alongside fellow trustees, in the running of the Branch and setting out both the short and long term aims.

As a minimum, trustees would normally be expected to attend a monthly committee meeting lasting some 2 to 3 hours. However, the commitment may vary depending on whether the trustee takes on additional duties. We anticipate that the volunteer in this role would need to commit to an additional two hours per week.

About the RSPCA

Founded in 1824 we have been saving animals for almost 200 years and are proud to be the oldest welfare charity around. It has always been our vision to live in a world where all animals are respected and treated with compassion, so our volunteers and employees work tirelessly to ensure that all animals can live free from pain and suffering.

Through our numerous campaigns, we seek to raise standards of care, and awareness of issues, affecting animals today. We rely heavily on our volunteers who play a significant role in enabling us to carry out this important animal welfare work every day!

The RSPCA Kent North West Branch

The Kent North West Branch is one of the branches of RSPCA, but we are also a separately registered charity looking after animals in our local area. Much of the animal welfare work of RSPCA is carried out through local branches, which is run by volunteers who have the support of the National Society of RSPCA.

The main activity of our branch is on the rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming of animals. We also educate the public about animal welfare and prevent suffering via neutering schemes. Our Branch covers all DA postcodes plus BR8 postcodes.

Primary responsibilities of the Branch Trustee – Legal and GDPR

  • Assist the Branch in ensuring that activities are GDPR compliant and reviewing and updating the Branch processing activities register.
  • Support the Branch in developing and updating Branch policies, particularly the Branch privacy notice and internal data protection policy, to make sure they are compliant.
  • Support the Branch when liaising with external specialist providers such as HR and health and safety specialists.
  • The Branch may occasionally enter into new leases with regards to its charity shops; so, liaising with external specialists for advice if it does not fall under your area of expertise.
  • To assist the Branch when developing new schemes, such as providing welfare assistance to those on low incomes, to ensure any new schemes are GDPR compliant.

Core Branch Trustee responsibilities

  • Appreciate and support the aims and policies of the RSPCA.
  • Work in conjunction with fellow trustees and branch officers and jointly act in making decisions for the best interest of the branch and the RSPCA.
  • Work with national RSPCA staff to ensure that the branch meets all minimum animal welfare standards (MAWS).
  • In conjunction with your fellow trustees and Branch Partnership Manager write, adopt, monitor, and review a development plan setting out the short and long term aims of your branch.
  • Actively participate in branch committee meetings and to attend the branch annual general meeting and regional conference.
  • Be aware of the outcome of regional board meetings and support regional initiatives.
  • Actively promote and advertise the society in an ongoing programme to recruit new branch trustees and volunteers and welcome new members.
  • In conjunction with your fellow trustees, ensure the proper management and control of all activities and decisions relating to any premises held or staff employed by the branch if applicable.

What we are looking for in a volunteer:

We are committed to creating a Board that is representative of our society and in particular, our community and surrounding areas so encourage people from any background to apply for any of our opportunities.

Alongside legal and GDPR compliance experience, we are looking for someone who is committed to the RSPCA’s charitable objectives and shares our passion for animal welfare. You would be creative, innovative, bring a fresh perspective, and can put ideas into action.

You will need to be able to work with people and have good interpersonal skills. You do not need to be an expert although commitment, common sense, and the ability to be objective are vital.

What we can offer you as a volunteer Branch Trustee – Legal and GDPR

  • We will provide you with a comprehensive trustee training course which will provide you will everything you need to carry out the role.
  • Ongoing support is also provided by regional and national RSPCA staff in addition to any additional training provided by the relevant branch.
  • The platform to utilise your skills and experience to oversee the charity and make decisions that have a direct impact on local animal welfare.
  • The opportunity to gain new skills and develop existing ones, whilst making a real difference to the lives of animals.
  • A way to expand your professional and personal network through working with like-minded people.

Practical considerations

  • Please also note that to become a Trustee, you will need to be aged 18 or over and a member of our branch for three months before you are eligible to be elected.
  • Trustees are elected for a 12-month term each year.
  • Reasonable expenses will be reimbursed.
  • Trustees must sign a Trustee Declaration of Willingness to Act to clarify that they are not disqualified from being a trustee and read the Charity Commission’s guidance for individuals on who cannot be a trustee or senior manager of a charity.
  • References will also be required.

Please click here for further information.

Homelessness charity ‘Spires’ seeks new Trustee – legal background welcomed

We are looking for new trustees and are particularly interested in hearing from candidates with lived experience appropriate to Spires’ client group and/or a background social care, probation or legal matters.

Spires is an award-winning charity that has been working with homeless and disadvantaged people in Streatham, South London, since 1990.  Working with some of the most isolated and vulnerable in our society, we support over 900 men and women every year.

What will you be doing?

Our Board of Trustees works together to ensure Spires’ work is sustainable and accountable by exercising good governance and following all necessary policies and procedures.

In addition to your statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have to help the board of trustees reach sound decisions. This may involve scrutinising board papers, leading discussions, focusing on key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, or other issues in which the trustee has special expertise.

This is an exciting time to join Spires’ Board as we have an new strategy in place that will ensure we meet the needs of more service users over a wider geographic areas in years to come.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for individuals with lived experience and/or a background in social care, legal or probation services as well as the following attributes:

  • A commitment to Spires and its objectives.
  • Good, independent judgement
  • Strategic vision
  • A willingness to speak their mind
  • An understanding of legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship.
  • A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to their duties as a Trustee
  • An ability to work effectively as a member of a team
  • An ability to think creatively

As an organisation we are particularly keen to ensure that our Trustees are fully representative of the community in which we work and at the current time we would warmly welcome applications from people with a diverse range of background, ethnicity, gender, culture and physical ability.

What’s in it for the volunteer?

This is a great opportunity to make a real difference in an organisation that is committed to helping vulnerable people to become active agents of their own lives. We are entering an exciting period of change for Spires. You will be involved in driving the strategic direction of our organisation, as we continue our provision of services which aim to empower individuals to lead more meaningful and purposeful lives, your role as a Trustee is key in ensuring our future sustainability.

 

Please click here for further information.

Organisation to rebuild lives after domestic abuse seeks new Trustee with law expertise

We are seeking to recruit passionate and committed Trustees to our Board, to play a role in the governance of the charity to ensure that we meet our strategic aims.

Safe Steps is a specialist provider, delivering services in Southend, Thurrock, and other areas of Essex. We offer a range of community services to support women, men, young people and children to rebuild their lives after domestic abuse. Operating from the Dove Centre, we take the dedication and pioneering work of the Southend Women’s’ Aid and SOS Domestic Abuse Projects over the last 40 years into the next 40.

Safe Steps is a new and forward-thinking charity that works with and for all survivors of domestic abuse, across Southend-on-Sea and in the wider Essex area. We are seeking to recruit passionate and committed Trustees to our Board, to play a role in the governance of the charity to ensure that we meet our strategic aims. If you have experience and skills, such as Human Resources, Contract Law or GDPR we would encourage you to apply.

As well as growing the size of our Board, we want to build a diverse trustee board; one that informs better decision making, improves the quality of our work and makes meaningful impact on improving the lives of adults, young people and children impacted by domestic abuse.

Time Commitment:

  • To attend a minimum of six meetings per year that last approximately 2 hours and usually take place on a mid-week evening in person.  During the pandemic meetings have been via Zoom/Teams.
  • To be open to joining a sub-committee meeting four times a year for 2 hours.
  • To attend in person two away-days per year
  • To attend ad-hoc fundraising or special events

Statutory duties of a Trustee would be: 

  • To ensure the organisation complies with its governing document – the Constitution.
  • To ensure that the organisation pursues its objectives as defined in its governing document.
  • To ensure the organisation applies its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objectives – the charity must not spend money on activities which are not included in its own objectives, no matter how ‘charitable’ and ‘worthwhile’ those activities are.

Please click here for further information.

Rosehill Arts Trust (Cumbria) seeks new Trustee – law expertise sought

Rosehill Arts Trust Ltd, the registered charity that runs Rosehill Theatre in West Cumbria, is seeking new trustees.

Our small board is hoping to increase in number as well as looking to broaden our diversity. We want to be more representative of the community we serve and are keen to get different experiences, views and ideas to help shape how we take the organisation forward, especially as we emerge from the pandemic.

In addition, we would ideally like some of the new trustees to have experience in one or more of the following areas:

  • Finance
  • Fundraising
  • Law
  • Theatre/arts management

Located high above Whitehaven, looking out over the Solway Firth to Scotland and inland to the Lake District, Rosehill is the cultural hub for West Cumbria and has a rich history going back more than 60 years. Being a trustee is a great opportunity to contribute to the work of our charity, to support a vibrant creative organisation working with, in and for our community, and to help shape our next 60 years of history!

 

Please click here for further information.

Education and training charity ‘Ascend’ seeks new Trustee – legal skills welcomed

As Trustee you will help to lead the charity by setting strategy and assuring the quality and focus of ASCEND’s services.  We provide advice, support and skills development so that clients can overcome the issues they face and reach their potential.

ASCEND’S VISION AND WHAT WE DO

ASCEND employs a small dedicated team to deliver training courses, provide careers advice, mentor clients and support their personal development.  Our facilities include a health and wellbeing centre where clients can access a range of help from ASCEND and a number of partner charities, and a gardening project.  We are based in South Oxhey, near Watford, Hertfordshire, at All Saints’ Church Centre, Gosforth Lane, South Oxhey, WD19 7AX and provide services for people in the surrounding areas.

Trustee 

ASCEND is seeking to appoint a Trustee to help lead the charity by setting strategy and assuring the quality and focus of the services we provide.  You will share ASCEND’s values, our commitment to social justice and our empathetic and person-centred approach to our clients.

As Trustee you will join a group of dedicated colleagues on the Trustee Board and ASCEND Management.  You will contribute to Board discussions including setting policy, budgets and goals, evaluating performance, keeping abreast of and meeting our legal, governance and quality standards.

We are seeking people of good judgement and strategic vision who can contribute positively to the Board’s discussions.  We particularly welcome applications from people with experience of delivering education or training programmes, experience of fund-raising, marketing communication or expertise in legal or human resources issues.

Please click here for further information.

The Rule of law in a changing world with Murray Hunt of The Bingham Centre

As Director of the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, Murray Hunt has had a lifelong interest in the social significance of the law and the ways in which practitioners can help to develop a better understanding of the role of the law in society, politics and business. Murray’s session for BCKR will cover modern slavery, accountability for war crimes, parliamentary scrutiny and the significance of the rule of law for global businesses, as he takes members through his own varied career journey as well as the ways in which lawyers can broaden their horizons by engaging with the rule of law issues which confront us today, both domestically and internationally.

He is also the UK’s alternate member of the Council of Europe’s Commission for Democracy Through Law (the Venice Commission) and Legal Adviser to the All Party Parliamentary Group on the Rule of Law, for which the Bingham Centre provides the secretariat. Murray is also an Associate Member of Matrix, which, with a number of like-minded barristers, he helped to set up in 2000.

 

Dance Woking seeks new Trustee – legal skills sought

About: Dance Woking is an innovative dance organisation which provides high quality opportunities to watch, perform and take part in dance, providing new experiences that we hope inspire artists, audiences, participants and communities. We champion and celebrate dance as a socially and culturally relevant force through an annual programme of events that resonate with our audiences.
Our mission: To encourage, empower and inspire all to participate in creative experiences to transform communities through dance.being transparent with your audience.
Dance Woking aims to be an outstanding contributor to the arts, culture and sport in Woking and the South East of England, with a regional and national reputation in its support and development of dance.
Dance Woking Philosophy: We believe the arts touch every aspect of our lives; they offer people a means of expression; promote creativity, knowledge and understanding and stimulate ideas and imagination. We strive to offer opportunities for people in Woking, Surrey and beyond to experience fantastic dance in Woking. We want our work to provide enjoyment, surprise, and revelation. Our work can be fun and frivolous, or, offer insight into the human condition and the world in which we live. Dance can be participatory, social or performed for an audience. Dance expresses ideas and emotions and can be pursued in linear or abstract forms. Dance has a powerful effect on people’s lives – the physical, emotional, mental and social benefits of dance are proven. Dance can help people to lead healthier lifestyles.

Dance Woking is seeking new Trustees to join its Board Interested in a new opportunity to lead and influence a dance charity.

It’s an exciting time for Dance Woking as we develop and create a new strategic direction and we are looking for new trustees to support and challenge the organisation.

We are seeking candidates with experience in the environment, financial management, business and commercial, IT, legal, HR and local community; we particularly welcome candidates from a range of backgrounds to help to progress our aim to become a fully inclusive and diverse organisation.

Dance Woking, is looking for committed individuals who can bring their expertise to this vibrant and versatile dance development organisation.

The Trustee role requires you to attend four board meetings per year, provide strategic support and enthusiastic advocacy.

Meetings usually take place early evening and are currently online. Board members will be expected to offer time and expertise outside of board meetings as relevant to their area of specialism.

Trustee/director roles are not accompanied by any financial remuneration, although reasonable expenses for travel may be claimed.

Board members will be asked to serve on the board of Trustees of Dance Woking for a minimum term of 3 years where possible.

 

Please click here for application details.

Westcountry Rivers Trust seeks new Trustee with legal expertise

The Westcountry Rivers Trust is recruiting two Trustees.  Formed in 1994, the Trust was established to restore Westcountry rivers.  Measures to protect rivers can help to save money for farmers, lower costs for water companies, boost tourism, reduce the need to dredge estuaries and even benefit human health.  Everything the Trust does is informed by the best available science. Their work is driven by an ‘ecosystems approach,’ considering the function of the entire catchment, not just the rivers that flow within them

Today this thriving charity works with a wide range of stakeholders from landowners to local communities, businesses, farmers and water companies to restore and protect the rivers, lakes, estuaries and coastal areas for the benefit of people, wildlife and the local economy. Following a recent Governance review, the Trust is looking to re-shape its Board and are seeking to appoint people with a passion for our environment who can offer expertise in the areas of law and corporate partnerships. 

Please contact Jackie Dawkins at Shine Charity Recruitment for further information.

Bath Artists’ Studios seeks new trustee with legal skills

Would you like to be involved with shaping the future of Bath’s biggest artists’ studios provider? Bath Artists’ Studios is looking for trustees to join the board. We are particularly looking for those with legal skills, fundraising experience, business knowledge or experience with property matters. However, the main requirement is an interest and enthusiasm for the arts and our mission of making the visual arts accessible and appreciated by all sectors of society. We are now at an exciting stage in our 25 year history, looking to expand into new premises and widen our community remit. This is a voluntary role and offers a great opportunity for meeting a wide range of artists in many different media in a friendly community.

 

Please click here for application details

Action in Rural Sussex seeks new Trustees – law experience sought

As some of our Trustees are retiring, Action in rural Sussex (AirS) is seeking talented individual(s) to join our Board.

AirS is an independent charity that exists for all people living in the rural areas of Sussex but especially those who are at risk of isolation and/or disadvantage, and for whom rural life brings an additional challenge and cost to their daily lives.

Established in 1931, we are very proud of the work that we have done to build stronger and more inclusive communities and to help people overcome the challenges caused by their rural location.  Members of the Board are appointed on a voluntary basis (but expenses can be reimbursed) and reflect a variety of professional backgrounds but all care deeply about making a positive difference in rural communities.

What are we looking for?

We are particularly looking for people with experience in some/all of the following areas:

  • Accountancy and Finance
  • Fund Raising
  • Rural Matters
  • Affordable Housing and Estate Management
  • Partnership Working
  • Marketing
  • Law
  • HR

We are also looking for people who can work as part of a team, can challenge and be challenged to get to the best answer and will support other Board members and the AirS team to deliver on the purpose and objectives of AirS.

What difference will you make?

As part of our board you will support and shape our work and strategic direction, as well as help us achieve our purpose to improve the lives of all those living in rural Sussex.

Members of the Board are expected to participate in the main Board as well as specific sub-committees and therefore the minimum commitment is likely to be at least eight meetings per year but we welcome people that can contribute more time than this.

A full induction and training where necessary are offered.

If you are interested in making a difference and would like further information, please reach out – we would love to talk to you.

Please click here for application details.

Voluntary Action Epping Forest seeks new Trustee

Voluntary Action Epping Forest (VAEF), is a growing and progressive local charity.

We provide vital services to elderly isolated and vulnerable local residents within the Epping Forest district and support other local charities to do the same. To help us in our aims we are looking for additional volunteers to join our Board of Trustees.

We are interested in hearing from people with a range of skills, enthusiasm and the desire to make a difference in their local community.

Our current projects include

The Volunteer Centre, providing volunteers to organisations in Epping Forest and Harlow

Ace Activities – weekly activities for people with Learning Disabilities

Gardening Handyman and Home Safety services – for people living in Epping Forest who are physically unable to maintain their gardens or DIY jobs themselves

Benefits Advice – helping housebound residents access benefits information and advice

Befriending Services – weekly social clubs, trips out, home visits, friendship, help and advice to socially isolated people over 65 years. These clubs have been operating for over ten years. To date, they have helped over a thousand older, isolated and vulnerable people in the Epping Forest area.

Community Services Hub was set up during the covid-19 pandemic to provide a ‘one-stop-shop’ of voluntary services support for people, most impacted by public health restrictions and personal circumstances.

Digital Bloomers. Helping seniors and those living with a disability in West Essex with their computers, tablets and smartphones.

Supported volunteers programme for West Essex is a new Voluntary Action Epping Forest programme which has been created to recruit and place people experiencing mental health issues into suitable volunteering opportunities as part of a potential pathway back into employment.

  • No previous Board experience is necessary.
  • Various trustee positions available.

    Legal skills desirable for one position but not essential for all.

  • We welcome applications from all ages and backgrounds.
    Board meetings are held bi-monthly.

Please click here for application details.

Young Forced Migrant charity ‘Baca’ seeks new Trustee with property / social housing law expertise

Specialist Supported Accommodation and Training for Young Forced Migrants 16+

Baca’s vision is a world where forced migrants are welcomed, safe, and have hope to rebuild their lives for a better future.

Baca supports young forced migrants who arrive as unaccompanied asylum seekers including those that have been trafficked, to rebuild their lives, integrate into a community and use their experience positively.

We achieve this by providing a safe and empowering environment and through the use of a holistic and personalised approach.

4 Main meetings a year (evenings) and 1 full day.  The member may also be linked to a sub-committee who meet prior to each main meeting.  Additional time may be assigned to visit staff and the offices and for reading and additional research.

Genuine Occupational Requirement: Must strongly align with the charity’s Vision and Values

STATUTORY DUTIES 

  • To ensure the organisation complies with its governing document – sometimes known as a trust deed, constitution, or articles of association.
  • To ensure that the organisation pursues its objectives as defined in its governing document.
  • To ensure the organisation applies its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objectives – the charity must not spend money on activities which are not included in its own objectives, no matter how ‘charitable’ and ‘worthwhile’ those activities are.
  • To contribute actively to the Board of Trustees’ role in giving firm strategic direction to the organisation, setting overall policy, defining goals and setting targets and evaluating performance against agreed targets.
  • To safeguard the good name and values of the organisation.
  • To ensure the effective and efficient administration of the organisation.
  • To ensure the financial stability of the organisation.
  • To protect and manage the property of the organisation and to ensure the proper investment of the organisation’s funds.
  • If the organisation employs staff, to appoint the Chief Executive Officer and monitor his or her performance.

With other trustees, to hold the charity ‘in trust’ for current and future beneficiaries by:

  • Ensuring that the charity has a clear vision, mission and strategic direction and is focused on achieving these;
  • Being responsible for the performance of the charity and for its “corporate” behaviour;
  • Ensuring that the charity complies with all legal and regulatory requirements;
  • Acting as guardians of the charity’s assets, both tangible and intangible, taking all due care over their security, deployment and proper application;
  • Ensuring that the charity’s governance is of the highest possible standard;
  • Providing expert knowledge to the board in their specialist area;
  • Where appropriate, challenging the chief executive and chair of trustees to ensure that the board as a whole works in partnership with executive staff

SCOPE AND LIMITS OF AUTHORITY 

No individual trustee, including the Chair, has authority unless specifically acting on behalf of the Trustee Board or with delegated authority of the Board. Collectively trustees have authority; individually they do not.

TECHNICAL EXPERTISE  

The Baca Charity is currently looking for people with expertise in at least one of the following areas:

  • Property/social housing law including an understanding of housing regulations and local property market/trends.
  • Finance expertise, particularly in the areas of charity finance and loans.
  • Community Engagement
  • Development of opportunities to support vulnerable people towards employment / entrepreneurship.
  • Safeguarding of children, young people and vulnerable adults.

LEVEL OF COMMITMENT 

Board Meetings 

All trustees are required to attend quarterly evening and 1 full day, Board meetings.  Board meetings usually take place at the Baca main office, Loughborough, Leicestershire. As appropriate, meetings could also take place virtually.

In addition to reading papers and preparing for meetings/conference calls, Trustees may be called upon for specific advice if they have particular expertise in a given area.

Committees 

According to their individual skills and experience, Trustees may also be invited to serve on Baca’s Finance or Staff & Young People Wellbeing Committees or on ad-hoc Working Groups. Committees meet quarterly, usually in advance of Board meetings.

 

Please click here for further information.

The Humane Research Trust seeks new Trustee with law experience

We support medical research for the benefit of people but without the use of animals or animal products. We support blue sky or orphan research, We support developing non – animal methodologies and scientists at the start of their careers.

 

What will you be doing?

Attend quarterly Trust Board meetings. Work on skill specific projects in between. Help to develop future strategy and be involved in the general management of the Trust. Provide input on the choice of new medical research projects as lay person.

 

What are we looking for?

Due to recent retirements we are looking for a number of Trustees with professional expertise and experience in the areas of Digital Marketing; Accounting; and Law. Trustees must be willing to work as part of a team and to assist in the general management and operation of the Trust. We anticipate that this will involve about 3-5 hours a month plus attendance at quarterly Board meetings.

 

What difference will you make?

The Trust has lost a number of Trustees recently due to retirement after long and valued service. We have taken this opportunity to refresh the skill base of the Trustees and are looking for people wanting to make a real contribution to moving forward.

Please click here for further information.

The Humane Research Trust website

Early intervention centre for marginalised/homeless ‘St Cuthberts Centre’ seeks new Trustee – HR law expertise

RF/SCC is a early intervention centre for those in distress/marginalised & provides a wide range of therapeutic/ support services for rough sleepers & those with mental health and/or substance abuse challenges.

RF/SCC has made great progress in recent years in broadening & deepening its range of services as well as improving its physical infrastructure in terms of refurbishment & the addition of new consulting rooms.There are further plans to expand further which will require strategic skills & management experience.

Due to relocation & as a result of a former trustee having to stand down, RF/SCC is now looking to enhance further the Board’s skills & expertise.

The new trustee should have a strong focus on ensuring the centre continues to comply with all legal & regulatory requirements as well as the charitable sector’s best practice as well as helping maintain governance at the highest possible standard.In particular the Board is looking for someone preferably with some knowledge of HR law & best practice.

Further they will be expected to support proactively the Board in formulating its strategy & setting its vision & objectives, including overseeing the qualitative measurement of the centre’s outcomes & impact.

Preferably a strong background in & working knowledge of HR law & best practice, ideally too within the charitable sector.

Experience as a trustee and or management positions.

Experience in dealing with vulnerable adults or other social work.

Resident within the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea would be a bonus.

 

Please click here for further information.

Homelessness charity ‘Spires’ seeks new Trustee with legal background

We are looking for new trustees and are particularly interested in hearing from candidates with lived experience appropriate to Spires’ client group and/or a background social care, probation or legal matters.

Spires is an award-winning charity that has been working with homeless and disadvantaged people in Streatham, South London, since 1990.  Working with some of the most isolated and vulnerable in our society, we support over 900 men and women every year.

What will you be doing?

Our Board of Trustees works together to ensure Spires’ work is sustainable and accountable by exercising good governance and following all necessary policies and procedures.

In addition to your statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have to help the board of trustees reach sound decisions. This may involve scrutinising board papers, leading discussions, focusing on key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, or other issues in which the trustee has special expertise.

This is an exciting time to join Spires’ Board as we have an new strategy in place that will ensure we meet the needs of more service users over a wider geographic areas in years to come.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for individuals with lived experience and/or a background in social care, legal or probation services as well as the following attributes:

  • A commitment to Spires and its objectives.
  • Good, independent judgement
  • Strategic vision
  • A willingness to speak their mind
  • An understanding of legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship.
  • A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to their duties as a Trustee
  • An ability to work effectively as a member of a team
  • An ability to think creatively

As an organisation we are particularly keen to ensure that our Trustees are fully representative of the community in which we work and at the current time we would warmly welcome applications from people with a diverse range of background, ethnicity, gender, culture and physical ability.

What’s in it for the volunteer?

This is a great opportunity to make a real difference in an organisation that is committed to helping vulnerable people to become active agents of their own lives. We are entering an exciting period of change for Spires. You will be involved in driving the strategic direction of our organisation, as we continue our provision of services which aim to empower individuals to lead more meaningful and purposeful lives, your role as a Trustee is key in ensuring our future sustainability.

 

Please click here for further information.

Sri Lanka animal charity ‘Dogstar Foundation’ seeks new Trustee – legal skills welcomed

Dogstar Foundation, a UK based charity with its NGO operating in Sri Lanka is looking for inspirational knowledge ambassadors within several key advisory areas to support our continued development.

What will you be doing?

Dogstar Foundation is in a major growth cycle following its transition from unincorporated (Charity number 1188754) to CIO status. Our focus is to improve the welfare of street dogs and cats in Sri Lanka, with canine/feline population control, rabies vaccination programmes, feeding, veterinary care and education.

Successful applicants to our board will have a mix of practical career experience and a passion for animal welfare
The migration of the charity functions from unincorporated to CIO status is practically complete and we now seek to expand our Trustee Board by a further 4-6 members, as we continue our expansion programme.

Key advisory input’s include Governance, Finance, HR, Stakeholder engagement, Legacy engagement, Marketing, Fundraising and Legal support.

Our Board members hold regular quarterly meetings and in between communicate regular on functional support matters and guidance via email, video calls and face to face where possible. Trustee board members may also be located in Sri Lanka which is 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 hours ahead (depending on daylight saving) so individuals need to be prepared to attend some meetings in the morning and occasionally at weekends.

More information on DOGSTAR FOUNDATION can be found on our web site and also Facebook and Instagram.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for individuals with an understanding and passion for animal welfare, with supporting experience within a private or third sector organisation.

Key advisory input’s include Governance, Finance, HR, Stakeholder engagement, Legacy engagement, Marketing, Fundraising and Legal support.

What difference will you make?

This is a vital role, helping ensure we can continue our support for our programmes in Sri Lanka. As a trustee, you will have a real opportunity to offer your unique skill set to help the strategic progression of the charity supporting the CEO and UK and Sri Lanka based teams.

Please click here for further information.

The Portfolio Lawyer with Kathryn Ludlow

Kathryn qualified as a lawyer in 1988 and was a partner at Linklaters for 20 years where she specialised in commercial dispute resolution and investigations. She was also the firm’s first Global Pro Bono Partner and chaired the Corporate Responsibility Committee.

Kathryn had a number of external roles whilst at Linklaters, including as a trustee of the Royal Courts of Justice Citizens Advice Centre and the Bingham Centre and as a member of the Aberystwyth University development board. Since retiring from Linklaters a few years ago, Kathryn has joined the board of The Great Ormond Street Hospital Foundation Trust and two not-for-profit organisations, The Hall for Cornwall – the leading arts organisation in Truro – and the humanitarian organisation International Rescue Committee UK. She also continued to serve on the Linklaters new partner election committee, worked with G3 and spent a short period returning to the law in an executive capacity, taking the role of General Counsel at Centerview Partners UK.

In recent years, Kathryn has gained considerable experience of not-for-profit organisations and their boards and will be talking about how she made the decisions which have shaped her post-law firm partner roles, describing the matters to take into account when deciding on a role and operating as a NED. She will also touch on her brief return to executive life as a GC and mention her new business venture…. to be launched imminently.

 

Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne seeks new Trustee with legal background

Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne provides advice people need for the problems they face as well as improve policies and practices that affect people’s lives.  The service provides free, independent, confidential and impartial advice to everyone.

Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne have exciting plans for our future, and we are seeking new volunteer Trustees to help lead and guide our progress, working with the Chief Officer to deliver our strategic plan.

What will you be doing?

We have identified some skills that would strengthen our Board and are looking for up to four new Trustees to joins us.

The Trustees hold the Chief Officer to account for the Charity’s mission and vision. As a Trustee you will:

  • Complete an introduction for your role.
  • Maintain an awareness of how Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne is operating.
  • Read papers for Board meetings and attend up to ten meetings per year.
  • Work on specific projects with other Trustees or staff within Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne to further the strategic objectives of Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne.
  • Take an active part in discussion during Board meetings and work with other Trustees to set policy and strategy direction, set targets and evaluate the performance of Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne.
  • Monitor the financial position of Citizens Advice Runnymede and Spelthorne, ensuring that it operates within its means and objectives, ensuring that there are clear lines of accountability for day to day financial management.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for Trustees who can be a passionate and persuasive advocate for our aims and principles, and inspire our team of over 40 volunteers, fellow Trustees, and stakeholders alike.

We are particularly keen to hear from candidates with a successful track record in the following fields: legal, marketing and communications or governance. We would also value Trustees that would want to join us and develop skills while working with us.

The Board are committed to diversifying its members so whether you are an experienced Trustee or wanting to take your first step as a Trustee, we would like to hear from you.

What difference will you make?

Volunteers are at the heart of the Citizens Advice service and we could not provide the service we do without them. The majority of our charity’s impact has come from our wonderful team of volunteers throughout the organisation.

Strong and efficient governance, based on a Trustee Board with a wide range of skills is essential to our charity’s ongoing work and allows us to continue to make a difference to people’s lives.

Time Commitment

Attendance is expected at 10 Board meetings per year. Meetings last around 90 minutes and are currently held by zoom with some in-person meetings being re-introduced over time.

As a small charity, there will be times when the Trustees will need to be actively involved beyond Board meetings. This may involve scrutinising board papers, leading discussions, focusing on key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, or other issues in which the Trustee has special expertise.

Estimated time to allow is 10 hours per month.

 

Please click here for a link to the Trustee Candidate Pack with application details.

The Westcountry Rivers Trust seeks new Trustees – law expertise sought

The Westcountry Rivers Trust is recruiting two Trustees.  Formed in 1994, the Trust was established to restore Westcountry rivers.  Measures to protect rivers can help to save money for farmers, lower costs for water companies, boost tourism, reduce the need to dredge estuaries and even benefit human health.  Everything the Trust does is informed by the best available science. Their work is driven by an ‘ecosystems approach,’ considering the function of the entire catchment, not just the rivers that flow within them

Today this thriving charity works with a wide range of stakeholders from landowners to local communities, businesses, farmers and water companies to restore and protect the rivers, lakes, estuaries and coastal areas for the benefit of people, wildlife and the local economy. Following a recent Governance review, the Trust is looking to re-shape its Board and are seeking to appoint people with a passion for our environment who can offer expertise in the areas of law and corporate partnerships. 

 

Please click here for further information.

Richard Susskind: Widening horizons – technology and tomorrow’s lawyers

Richard is a leading authority on the interaction between technology and the law. He is a prolific author and speaker as well as being an independent adviser to international professional firms and national governments. He is the IT Adviser to the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and holds professorships at the University of Oxford, Gresham College and Strathclyde University.

Click below to watch Richard in conversation with Guy Beringer. A fascinating exploration of the role of AI and the law and making the law more accessible for all.

“If the answer is ‘more lawyers’ then you’re probably asking the wrong question!”

 

Lawyer and Beyond with Matthew Rhodes

Matthew left Ashurst in 2000 to found RollOnFriday, he is one of the founder directors of BCKR, spent 6 years as a trustee of Prisoners Abroad and is a visiting lecturer at BPP Law School. Matthew was appointed an OBE in the 2011 New Year’s List for services to legal pro bono.

In conversation with Guy Beringer, Matthew explained how he took the leap from legal practice to start RollOnFriday, shared his insights into the legal profession today and how it helps, (or not!) its senior lawyers to develop and move on from the profession.  He says that “pro bono is in most lawyers’ DNA”.  BCKR is well placed to guide all lawyers through the process to pro bono and beyond.

 

 

Howard Charles: How music in the workplace can make you a better lawyer

Howard Charles describes his career journey from young professional singer to establishing a business which brings music, dance and theatre to the workplace. He explains why individuals will benefit from this and how it can improve individual self esteem, confidence and performance in work. He also explains that these benefits can be accessed by anyone irrespective of musical talent or experience.

 

 

Blake Cottage Trust (William Blake) in West Sussex seeks new Trustee

William Blake (poet, artist and visionary 1757-1827) and his wife Catherine lived in a cottage in the village of Felpham in West Sussex between 1800 and 1803. The Cottage is now one of the only two surviving homes where Blake lived, the other being a Georgian townhouse in London. The Blake Cottage Trust was set up in 2015 and successfully raised half a million pounds to purchase the Cottage and put it into trust for the nation. Our aim now is to renovate the building in time for the 200th anniversary of Blake’s death in 2027 and open it as a centre for the dissenting imagination; celebrating Blake’s life and works.We are therefore at the start of an exciting five-year project and we, the four existing Trustees, are looking for other people to join us in the adventure. In total we currently have six vacancies, with one being reserved for a representative from the local community.

Although the Cottage is located in West Sussex on the South Coast of England, Trustees can be based anywhere in the UK, although occasional visits to the Cottage will obviously be required. Trustees give their time free but in due course, when funds allow, we hope to be able to cover travel expenses, or similar costs. In return you will gain experience in a range of skills, including historic building restoration, property management, interpretation and educational activities. Come and join us.

 

Please click here for further information.

Financial Markets: The Questions the Board is Asking with James Ayling – Research Analyst of JM Finn

James Ayling is a Research Analyst within JM Finn’s Equity Research team responsible for UK and overseas equity coverage.  James gave a comprehensive run down of market conditions over the last 18 months, how the pandemic is affecting supply chains, the impact of inflationary pressures and where we are in the current economic cycle – all of which are areas influencing the decision-making process of the board.

 

Zest Theatre based in Lincoln seeks new Trustee with legal specialism

Zest is an award-winning theatre company creating exhilarating new work for young people. In light of the pandemic, we are overhauling our work to better meet the needs of young people and make a greater impact on their communities. Zest is seeking new at least one new Trustee with a Legal Specialism to join our board and support the organisation at this exciting time.

Based in Lincoln, Zest creates work for theatres, festivals, outdoor spaces, schools and digital platforms, with work described as ‘unpretentious’ (The Stage) and ‘invigorating’ (The British Theatre Guide). We actively place young people at the centre of the action and creative process.

Zest is searching for at least one new Trustee who is ready to invest their knowledge to enrich the evolution of the company and the lives of the young people we serve. You might not have an arts background, but you’ll be authentic, transparent and excited to join a collaborative team focused on the inclusion and amplification of young voices. Acting as a critical friend to Zest, you would be able to use your experience and specialisms to interrogate our practice, whilst offering contingency and support to our small-but-mighty core team.

Please click here for further information and application details.

Lynn Hiestand: The Portfolio Lawyer – Life is too short to do just one thing!

Lynn Hiestand spent nearly thirty years in international corporate restructuring, mostly at Skadden Arps in Chicago and London, before moving to Heartland Alliance International, a human rights organisation aimed at assisting marginalized populations. She has recently been Country Director in Iraq where HAI aims to provide legal, mental health and other services to vulnerable Iraqis throughout the Kurdistan Region and Southern Iraq.

Alongside this, Lynn is a NED or trustee for JUSTICE, Wellbeing for Women, Literature for All of Us and Georgetown University Law Center, roles based in the US and the UK.

 

The Importance of Legal Platforms as Valuable Economic Assets by BCKR’s Guy Beringer

In this Spotlight article Guy Beringer considers the importance of legal platforms as valuable economic assets; he argues that this requires:

(i) an understanding of the value that can accrue to an economy as a result of the efficiency of a legal platform;

(ii) planning of the legal platform so that it keeps pace with development; and

(iii) investment in the legal platform.

Click here to read more.

BCKR founder Guy Beringer interview on MSNBC/NBC News for Climate Action Live

Chairman of The Legal Education Foundation, Former Chair UK Export Finance, Former Senior Partner of Allen & Overy Guy Beringer CBE is interviewed by Anchor and Journalist MSNBC/NBC News, Author of “Enough About Me” Richard Lui for Climate Action Live 21

Hear Guy explain how Climate Action requires the framework of the Rule of Law to achieve its aims.

 

Sir Stephen Waley-Cohen: The Chairman’s Perspective

We were delighted to welcome Sir Stephen Waley-Cohen to BCKR. After studying law at Cambridge, Stephen’s career initially embraced financial journalism (a founder of Euromoney Publications at 23) before moving into theatre-owning and managing 11 leading West End theatres.
While Stephen has had plenty of commercial non-executive experience, he focused the session on the not-for-profit elements of his career and in particular, his Chairing of RADA, where he took over from Richard Attenborough – and why Attenborough called everyone ‘darling’!  He discussed taking trustee roles at younger or older ages, the role of non-execs given the limited knowledge available to them, and the importance of strategy reviews, touching on the importance of lawyers on the board not being regarded as a source of free advice.

“It’s the Chairman’s job to make sure the meetings are useful, interesting and constructive.”

Click below to hear more.

Professor Lynda Gratton: how to prepare for a 60 year working life?

Below is the recording of the BCKR event with Professor Lynda Gratton 0n 7 October. Lynda is an expert on the future of work and, during the event, she discussed the major demographic changes in the developed world and the significant consequences which these will have for the lives and careers of lawyers and for law firms. How do we deal with the changes which are taking place, including a move towards working lives of 60 years, and what are some of the things which we can do to prepare for this. A thought-provoking event in an area which is not sufficiently considered.

A practical and informative session with leading headhunter Kit Bingham

We were delighted to welcome Kit Bingham to BCKR. Kit is the Head of the UK Board practice at leading headhunter Heidrick & Struggles, leading searches for Chairs, Non-Executive Directors and Chief Executive Officers across a wide range of industries.  Kit joined the session and provided members with a practical guide on how to approach headhunters.

According to Kit, lawyers are problem solvers, crisis managers and people who bring solutions to the board, but they also need to bring ingredient ‘x’!  Click below to find out more.

 

 

 

The Board: A General Counsel’s Perspective with Dan Fitz

We were joined by Dan Fitz, GC of the Crick Institute. Dan has served as General Counsel and Company Secretary of BT Group, Cable & Wireless and Misys. He has chaired the Association of Corporate Counsel and been Vice Chair of the GC 100. He has been named in the FT’s list of the top 30 Global General Counsel and in 2014 the FT named him one of the top 100 LGBT executives.  Watch back to see how Dan planned, or didn’t plan, his career path leading him to his current post.

 

Former lawyer turned psychotherapist Gavin Sharpe – workaholism, life, law and stress

We were joined by former Allen & Overy lawyer, Gavin Sharpe who, in 2012, made the decision to retrain as a coach and psychotherapist. He encouraged us all to take a step back and take a look at work and life as a whole. Anyone who takes work calls whilst on ‘holiday’ or pulled all-nighters, will benefit from spending a few minutes listening and reflecting upon what Gavin had to say. Gavin himself now has a diversified portfolio career alongside his main career, and seems to have achieved a balance that many current lawyers are now looking for.

The Portfolio Lawyer with Andrew Peck: Plan ahead, get committee experience and fill your address book!

We were joined by former Linklaters lawyer, Andrew Peck, who shared with us his experience of planning for and achieving a fulfilling portfolio career. This should resonate with any lawyer currently thinking about how the next few years will look.

Click the link below and watch the webinar back to hear Andrew’s top tips for planning ahead, achieving his aims, and looking forward with no regrets.

Tim Wainwright CE WaterAid UK: What to look for in a good board member

Tim has worked with two Chairs who have also been lawyers so you’ll be pleased to hear that he doesn’t feel lawyers should be pigeon-holed into one single category. He wants to see what that individual can offer as a whole. Indeed, Tim has found a legal background to be a valued asset on a board, often bringing with it wisdom, a breadth of experience, “lawyers see an awful lot of things!” and, in his experience, a “precise and forensic'” approach.

Watch Tim Clark (BCKR) and Tim Wainwright in discussion below.

Headhunter Susanne André: the benefits Lawyers can bring to development agencies and non-profits

Starting out as a lawyer, and now in search for the development and NGO sector, Susanne’s session looked at a number of aspects of the NED roles in the development sector and the opportunities for lawyers who are considering these roles. These aspects included:

  • the inter-linkages between the public and private sectors in the light of the UN SDGs
  • the differences between the private and development sectors including cultural and senior relationship matters
  • the attributes which are required for appointments in the development sector including a growth mindset, motivation for the cause, diplomacy and networking
  • the expertise and experience of lawyers which support successful applications including understanding business organisations and partnership dynamics (in particular, consensus decision-making), attention to detail and the advisory mindset

Overall, it was Susanne’s view that the development sector held out a range of interesting opportunities for lawyers given their experience and expertise. This was particularly the case following the pandemic given that attendance at meetings (which, for many agencies, were held outside the UK) would not continue to involve such an extensive travel requirement.

Watch the webinar below to hear more.

 

The Portfolio Lawyer – Jonathan Scott: how to have a successful plural life after law

On retiring from his roles as Senior Partner and Executive Chair of Herbert Smith Freehills, Jonathan Scott wanted to take on number of external appointments.  He has sought roles which would be an interesting challenge,  take him out of his comfort zone, enable him to ‘put something back’ and ultimately, have fun in the process.

With some help along the way Jonathan now enjoys a successful plural life. Do watch our conversation with Jonathan who gave us a first hand insight into how he went about realising his plans and just what benefits he feels lawyers can bring to boards.

Andrea Coomber Director of Justice: how law, and lawyers, can be a vehicle for change

Andrea Coomber, the Director of Justice, gave an excellent overview of the role of Justice in addressing societal concerns and of the value of the justice system as a public good. She also looked at how lawyers might themselves practically contribute to the challenge of ensuring that the justice system is effective, particularly at a time when public confidence has been shaken in areas such as racial inequality and gender based violence.
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She concluded with some valuable insights into remote working based on her experience of working as Director of Justice from Australia in recent months.
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Watch Andrea in discussion with one of BCKR’s directors, Guy Beringer, below.

Headhunter Jan Hall: Be your own best advocate

Jan was until recently one of the leading headhunters for Chair, Board and senior executive roles at major corporates and is now running a consultancy for senior NEDs and management. Jan’s session gave many insights (based on her executive and NED career – which started at the age of 27) into:

  • how headhunters work and how to make them your messenger,
  • how to keep in touch with them,
  • avoiding being desperate, grumpy or arrogant, and
  • why we should not take rejection personally.

She has also recently published Changing Gear, on how best to approach life after a full-on career.

One point was of particular note – when researching this book, Jan realised that, when compared to others, we lawyers spend too little time treating ourselves and our next career stage as a project and, therefore, invest too little in ourselves when working out our next steps and securing the next stage of our careers. BCKR and its various offerings offer you a good way to make this key investment.

Do watch the webinar below to hear Jan’s take on the transition to portfolio life.

Rebecca Gudgeon on ESG and Corporate Reputation

Rebecca Gudgeon, a partner in the communications firm Hudson Sandler, has extensive experience as an adviser on organisation risk and reputation issues. She leads HS Sustain (the ESG practice of Hudson Sandler) and is one of the leading advisers in the ESG sector.

Rebecca’s talk (and the subsequent conversation) covered the impact of the rapidly developing ESG sector, the broad scope of ESG requirements and the knowledge which non-executive board members of an organisation (including not for profit boards) now need to have to operate effectively as NEDs.  The areas covered by the discussion included:
  • ESG and the development of strategy (including the role of the UN SDGs)
  • the stakeholders affected by ESG strategy and operations
  • the cross disciplinary impact of ESG
  • measurement and the role of ESG rating agencies
  • the role of the Board in looking at ESG requirements
  • the interplay between long-term strategy and shorter term decision-making (including executive remuneration) and reporting
  • becoming familiar with ESG requirements
  • how to deal with ESG ‘dinosaurs’ on a board.

Click below to watch back the webinar.

Hilary Wild: How the Audit Committee can be a perfect fit for a lawyer

We were joined by highly experienced audit committee chair, Hilary Wild, who takes us through just how beneficial the presence of a lawyer on a board can be. The prerequisites of an audit committee member – the ability to think independently and objectively, integrity, the ability to manage confidential and sensitive information, are all characteristics often found not just in accountants but in lawyers too.

Whilst not all lawyers are not finance professionals, many lawyers are hugely financially literate and their place on an Audit Committee will be an asset. Indeed, as Hilary suggested herself, an Audit Committee made up solely of accountants would not be at all healthy! Lawyers have the potential to bring far more to the table.

Hilary has provided some useful background material from The Chartered Institute of Internal Auditors which provides us with a high level view of the context for audit committees, and a sample audit committee charter. Please do watch the webinar below to find out more.

 

Miranda Wayland from the BBC: Boardroom issues of the day – BLM and the diversity agenda

We were delighted to be joined by Miranda Wayland, Head of Creative Diversity at the BBC who talked us through how they go about analysing the gap between diversity/equality and equity and the practical steps which can be taken to address that gap as well as looking at diversity in its widest context. Miranda articulates well one of the key issues of understanding other people’s perceptions and perspectives.

The BBC – although different from other organisations – is a great comparator and the (internal) work which they were doing is really impressive and an example if we are to address these fundamental problems.

Click the video below to watch our webinar.

David Paterson: top tips for current lawyers – plan early and take the initiative

We were joined by former lawyer, David Paterson, who spoke candidly about the need to preserve self esteem and be realistic when starting out on a portfolio life. His words will resonate with many of us. David guides our members through his own journey in transitioning from being an M&A and board advisory partner at HSF to holding a variety of non-executive and trustee roles in the charitable and sporting arena just two years later.

David recommends doing research to find out what it is you want from a portfolio life, be realistic, network, and use the services that BCKR has to offer.

Watch the recording below to hear more from David.

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RACC-UK (Rare auto-inflammatory support organisation) seeks new Trustee with law expertise

TrusteeRACC – UK is the UK’s only patient charity for patients and families suffering from #Rare Autoinflammatory conditions.

We are looking for applications from people from all social and cultural backgrounds, which are passionate about Rare Diseases, enthusiastic and reliable, with a variety of skills and experience they could use to help with the running of Rare Auto-inflammatory Conditions Community – UK (RACC-UK), such as:

  • Charity governance
  • Finance
  • Law
  • Fundraising
  • Project management
  • Business management
  • Marketing
  • Communication
  • Human Resources
  • Event planning

 

We are looking for skilled, enthusiastic and reliable people to manage the affairs of Rare Auto-inflammatory Conditions Community – UK (RACC-UK) as trustees, ensuring that the Branch is governed and managed effectively, whilst continually having Rare Diseases at the forefront of their minds. Trustees serve on the governing body of the charity and have the responsibility for the running of the charity.

Please click here for further information.

Guy Henderson: Six steps to take when looking at life after law

This week we were joined by Guy Henderson, former lawyer at Allen & Overy, who performed a complete career change and is now Chief Executive of Ascot Racecourse, amongst other things.

Guy takes us through the six steps he would recommend taking when sitting down to consider a life after law, planning for a life that makes you ‘leap out of bed in the morning!’

 

Christopher Rodrigues CBE: judgement, insight, worldly experience and a passion for the cause

Christopher Rodrigues, chair past and present of a diverse range of boards from the arts and sport to finance and education, provided our members with an invaluable insight into what he looks for in a useful board member, often counting lawyers among those who can best help the board make better decisions. He takes the refreshing approach of always trying to recruit members to his boards for whom the role will be their first.

Additionally, Christopher details how the nature and form of board meetings are changing over the course of 2020 while we try and cope with the limitations imposed by the pandemic – some changes are for the better, and some will be retained even after the threat of covid has subsided.

Lisa Mulley: taking control of your personal and professional life with consulting

We were recently joined by Lisa Mulley who leads Peerpoint, the consulting panel for Allen & Overy, who considers how lawyers, in her experience, can take their first brave steps into the world of legal consultancy, thereby allowing them greater control and the freedom to explore different avenues.

‘Knowing your skillset’, and ‘good listening skills’ are just a couple of areas crucial for lawyers to consider if they wish to successfully pursue a career in consultancy. These are equally crucial areas for lawyers to review in preparation for securing their board roles.  Being a good lawyer is almost a ‘given’. Do watch the webinar to find out more about this potentially exciting and enriching area.

If you email us here, we will be happy to put any of our members in touch with Peerpoint if they wish to consider consultancy.

Susie Cummings from Nurole: Simplifying the headhunting process

We were joined by Susie Cummings from Nurole who talked us through the process they adopt when charged with finding candidates to fill board roles, citing many lawyers along the way who have successfully attained their board roles this way. Nurole actively encourages boards to hire ‘first timers’, indeed around half their appointees are taking on their first role. Do watch the webinar to see Susie’s enthusiasm for this successful, thriving business model.

If you would like to get in touch with Nurole, Susie and her team will be pleased to hear from BCKR members. Please email them enquiries@nurole.com to find out more.

 

 

The case for English law: Underpinning the City – and the UK economy – CSFI and Guy Beringer

 

Two of the UK’s most senior lawyers, Dame Elizabeth Gloster and Guy Beringer, published a letter in the FT urging the government to provide the sort of support for the UK’s dispute resolution system that it already does for, say, the film and fashion industries. After all, English law is crucial to the UK economy – and there is no doubt that it is under challenge from NY law, from Brexit and from the development of local alternatives not least in Asia. Liz and Guy explain what they want, and why. And Simon Gleeson adds his own contribution to a topic that will become increasingly important.

 

Malcolm Sparkes and Cyber-Security: “it is the business of the board to manage risk”

This week we were very fortunate to welcome Malcolm Sparkes and his colleague Dr Susanna Berry from security consultancy firm Blacksmiths, to discuss how the Non-Executive Director can be best placed to help minimise risk and ensure their firm is secure.

Given the increasing number of cyber-attacks on firms large and small, the webinar is worth watching. We consider subjects ranging from security within large institutions to whether there is risk working from home on your own laptop! Malcolm also let us have a list of the top 10 security questions non-executive directors may like to raise, as during the webinar he reminded us that ‘it is the business of the board to manage risk’.

 

Webinar with Nigel Boardman: taking on external roles ‘makes you a better advisor’

BCKR welcomed portfolio lawyer Nigel Boardman to talk us through his journey from partner at Slaughter & May to where he is now, holding an interesting and diverse portfolio of non-executive roles.

If you are starting to consider taking on roles, it’s worth listening to what Nigel has to say about lawyers sitting on boards and just how much taking on roles can benefit your clients, benefit your employer, and ultimately, you. As Nigel himself says, taking on roles “adds humanity to your life and work… anyone who’s qualified as a lawyer has a lot to offer.”

 

Webinar with John Schonert: Headhunting is not a dark art! A different approach to finding the right NED

We were delighted to welcome John Schonert from executive search firm Williams Schone this week. He put BCKR director, Elizabeth Holden, on one of her boards, so is ideally placed to guide our members when looking for their first portfolio role. We hope you will find John’s approach to placing Non-Executive Directors both engaging and refreshing.

If you wish to take up John’s offer of an initial discussion please let us know here and we’ll put you in touch.

 

 

Webinar with Nick Alcock from G3: The World Post Covid

We recently welcomed Nick Alcock, former investment banker and intelligence officer, now CEO of the G3, one of the leading international business intelligence firms advising a range of companies, investors and law firms on issues across the business world.

Click the video link below to hear Nick’s take on how the world may look in the future.

 

 

 

 

Webinar with Nick Aitchison: One-to-One guidance during the Pandemic

BCKR’s Nick Aitchison talked us through the tailored service we are offering during the pandemic and beyond. Elizabeth Holden, Guy Beringer and Tim Clark gave us their useful insight too in how they were able to go about securing their their first NED roles. Click the on the webinar below to find out more.

 

https://vimeo.com/417234615

 

Martin Jones: The Parole Board and Lawyers make a perfect fit

BCKR recently welcomed Martin Jones to host a Breakfast Event. Martin has been Chief Executive of The Parole Board for nearly five years and has worked in the justice system for 27 years. His current role has been  the most challenging and also the most rewarding. Members can access the presentation Martin gave here.

 

What does the Parole Board do?

It is similar to a court – a body that, independent of the Government, makes decisions regarding  whether to order the release of prisoners; it also conditions under which such a release should be made.

There are around 270 members of the Parole Board, making these decisions. Last year the Parole Board released 3,600 people but also decided a further 10,000 needed to remain in prison for the protection of the public. The Board has a 99% success rate; success is defined as the number of people released who go on to commit a serious offence thereafter ( they don’t, for example,  count someone who has spent 30 years in prison, who is then released but is caught shoplifting. Their sole focus in law is the risk to public.

Looking back to when the Parole Board was created in 1967, it had just 17 members and was purely an advisory body – advising the Home Secretary who made the final decision. Leaving the final release decision to politicians, who might be influenced by other factors than solely risk, was not ideal. That is why the Home Secretary’s powers over release have been gradually taken away and now the decisions rest solely within the justice system.

Fifty years ago, there were no parole hearings at all and decisions were made based on a paper-based review. About 25 years ago the courts decided that in the interest of fairness, the prisoners should be entitled to a court hearing to decide their suitability for release. The number of hearings this year is at an all-time high – 8400 hearings, a 590% increase to 15 years ago.

 

Why does the Parole Board matter?

These are independent decisions based on risk and on evidence.  The Board considers  the evidence and makes the decision based on fairness and the evidence; decisions are not influenced by whether or not someone is going to like/dislike the decision.

It is also about ensuring that we only lawfully keep in prison those that pose significant risk to the public. If necessary, that means some will be in prison for the rest of their lives, and the Board doesn’t  shirk from that. But it is also about providing hope for those who reform and change, and who can show there is a low risk of reoffending.

Ultimately it is about understanding and reducing risk, as well as managing  risk when someone is released back into their community. That is where licensing can be very powerful.  At any one time there are about 1000 people currently on license in the community – with tags on their ankles to track their location.  This acts as a deterrent, but also is a reassurance to victims.  Exclusion zones can be set and there can also be residence and other conditions, setting limits around where they can live, who they can’t  contact i.e. victims or people you originally committed the offence with.

 

What the Parole Board does

Last year 64,000 people were released from prison. Of these, under 3,000 were released by the Parole Board.  95% are automatically released by virtue of the law with only the more serious offenders being referred to the parole board.  Contrary to popular belief, the Parole Board are not there just to’ let people out’…. the parole system provides a lawful way of keeping people in prison if they are considered to be a continued risk to the public.

 

Who joins the Parole Board?

As a public body it is important that it reflects the community it serves – diversity is ever more important.  However, the types of people that generally sit on the boards are from the following backgrounds:

  • Judges or magistrates
  • People from a legal background
  • Psychologists and Psychiatrists
  • Justice system background
  • Probation experience or
  • Retired prison governors

There is usually a panel of 3 people, sitting in the prison, with the prisoner on the other side of the table, hearing from the probation officers, prison staff, psychologists and others about what has happened to that prisoner since they’ve been in prison.  Getting an understanding of the way their risk has changed and what their behaviour is like since being in custody.

One major issue is keeping up with the case load. When Martin arrived at the Parole Board in 2015 there was typically a 15 months wait for a hearing, so many of these prisoners would be considered safe to be released but were  being kept in prison merely because of the inability of the system to cope. – and as a result the Parole Board was paying out about £1million per year in prisoner compensation claims.

Increasing transparency has been a major issue since 2018.  Until the law was changed in 2018, a victim could be refused release  without any explanation as to why.  The law then changed to allow the Parole Board to provide summaries of the decision-making process to the victims. The prisoner also gets a separate report detailing why a decision has been made. If it is felt that the decision is unfair the new system allows for the decision to be reconsidered. So far there have been 130 applications and 17 have those have been successful.  In the majority of cases it is the prisoner asking for reconsideration – not the victims.  All these decisions are now being published.

 

Victims – What are they entitled to?

  • Updates on prisoners progress in custody
  • Can summit a victim personal statement about the impact the offence has had on their life and can read it at the parole hearing if they wish.  Very important that the board is not influenced at all by representations made by the victims.  The decision is made based on the evidence.
  • To be made aware of license decisions, where the prisoner will reside
  • They can write to the Secretary of State for reconsideration
  • Notification of a prisoner’s release

The healing process of the victim is very difficult, and the  Parole Board is sensitive to that.  They do take into account non-contact and inclusion zones.  They have been working with the charity Why Me about the value of restorative justice.  Sometimes this kind of intervention can be the thing that triggers a prisoner to reform.

The Board also deals with about 20-30 terrorism cases each year. For these cases there are is a small group of members cleared at the high security levels to deal with those cases including those high in the judiciary.  There is specialised training to members regarding the specific aspects of risk which are rather different for radicalised prisoners .  Psychological evidence becomes much more important and you need to ask a different set of questions around that.

 

Q&A

 

What insights does it give you into the prison system generally?

Prison conditions are very difficult at times. The levels of prison staffing has directly impacted on the levels of violence in prisons.  Being in prison is also damaging to your health.

 

What is the criteria for risk?

There is a statutory risk test.  They have to be satisfied that the prisoner is no longer going to be a risk to the public.  You have to go with weighted evidence.  Closer to the civil burden than the reasonable doubt.

 

What is the process and timescale?

A case will be referred to the Parole Board automatically by the Secretary of State for Justice when the minimum term expires, and the prisoner becomes eligible for parole.  He will disclose a body of papers including all relevant reports to a single member of the board who will do a triage assessment of the case.  They are essentially looking for 3 things:

  1. Is it possible to release the prisoner based on the papers?  That’s quite unusual.
  2. Have you got all the information you need – are there any gaps?
  3. Do you turn down the prisoner based on the papers?  For example did they assault a prisoner officer three  weeks ago … thereby rendering  a parole hearing pointless?

Once the Members are satisfied  they have enough background, the case can be directed to a parole hearing.  Normally it takes about six months from initial referral to the oral hearing.

After the hearing the Chairman will write a report and 14 days later a decision will be given.

There will be anywhere between 1 and 3 members sitting on a panel, depending on the seriousness of the case.

 

What makes a good member?

It is essentially  the ability to assess information (which can be up to 1000 pages of evidence) and taking on board that evidence to conduct an effective independent assessment and being quite laser-like to reach the  ten or so questions that need to be asked to make a sound decision. Ultimately we need people who can make decisions.  In the past criminal justice experience was generally required but that is not the case anymore.  A lot of the panel chairs are senior people from varied backgrounds –including numerous  Lawyers– who have the ability to assimilate the evidence and have a commitment to fairness, putting aside any personal prejudices (for instance, regarding sex offenders – indeed about 40% of the work relates to sex offenders).

 

Do you fit members to the attributes of a particular case?

  • Yes – if there are mental health issues they would look to appoint a psychologist to the review. Typically a psychiatrist would be deployed in terrorism cases, etc.
  • In some instances the complexity of the case might require having a judge or lawyer to be on the panel.

 

What is the selection process?

It is quite a popular job.  The Board recently had 1200 applications for 100 jobs. There are regular 12 week rolling recruitment campaigns.  You can write to the Parole Board and express an interest so that when the next competition opens you can ‘throw your hat into the ring’.

Candidates, via their CVs, need to be able to demonstrate, against a set of examples, that they have gained the requisite set of skills.

The CVs are sifted and then the process goes straight to interview.  During the last process, they conducted about 150 interviews and there was a 70% success rate in securing  the required number of appointments.  The time commitment is about 100 days per year.  Members are paid on a daily rate and can earn around £40,000-£50,000 p.a.

A residential training course and process is provided, which includes:

  • Legal training
  • The identification of a mentor
  • Training on effective questioning – for example how do you question vulnerable prisoners who  feel unable to speak for themselves?
  • Sitting as a co-panellist
  • After 3 months experience, sitting  on your own.  Then after a year it is possible to progress to becoming  a panel Chair.

 

Is there a postcode lottery with regards to availability of services in the community upon release?

Ultimately the burden falls to the local authority. The Parole Board’s role is solely to make a decision based on risk, which is not based on the availability of services.

 

Is there an appraisal process?

Yes, members are subject to appraisal.  This covers the decisions made, it entails practical observations, reviews any complaints made etc.

 

Sir Mike Rake: having a legal mind on the board can mean the right questions are asked

We recently welcomed Sir Mike Rake to come and share with us his experience of heading boards and the positive role lawyers can play on them.

Mike Rake has very wide Board and leadership experience, as the former head of KPMG and since as a Chairman and NED of many organisations, including public companies (including BT plc) in the UK and US, the NHS (Gt Ormond Street Hospital), the CBI etc.

Mike sees the key challenges for boards as follows: constructively addressing the key issues facing the organisation;  defining and adhering to the organisation’s culture and values; understanding and mentoring  the key senior executives;  succession planning; and ensuring good governance and compliance.

It is vital for the Board to stand back and look at the bigger picture.  A clear strategic framework is important, not least as there are CEOs who are strategic but not operational and those who are operationally strong but can’t see the big picture.  Meanwhile, Boards must know enough about what is coming through on the operational point of view.

The role of the board is one of huge responsibility but also very interesting and challenging. Ultimately, it is all about people. For example, sometimes boards have to work with a strong, aggressively confident  CEO with little or no financial background who may be trying to push things forward; in such situations, the Board must be alert. Board members must bring a complex balance of professional experience, constructive challenge, advice and encouragement. Obviously, integrity of reporting is essential. Boards must also have close constructive dialogue with their auditors, and the role of the big accounting firm is very important.

The role of the Chair is to ensure there is a balance of tone and constant, constructive challenge. The UK’s board system is generally a good one compared to the US system, where the combination of CEO and Chair roles can be problematic and lacking in challenge.

The composition of the board is important, bringing different perspectives but with the ability to work constructively together. Too big a board is as bad as no board – and the same goes for the information provided to the board –  i.e. too much data flowing is as bad as no information! It really is unreasonable to expect a non-exec to understand an enormous level of detail when, realistically they maybe only involved (in the NFP sector particularly) with an organisation 4 – 6 times a year.

It is important that the board is diverse in terms of age, gender, social and educational background and professional and international experience, in order to achieve the board’s objectives.  The UK has made a start in the right direction, for example with the 30% Club but headhunters can be a big problem here. They tend to introduce Chairs to people they already know of, to make you feel comfortable. Boards would be improved by widening the net and board diversity has the capacity to have a real impact on success. With a smaller board you do need to work quite hard to find the right people, who can bring the experience and skills you need.

The NEDs’ role is often to ‘ask the stupid question’  –  incidentally there is no such thing as a stupid question! The Chair needs to create the right environment where that is acceptable. The UK approach to boards has been effective, particularly with more private sessions with the Chair outside the boardroom.  It allows the Chair to get feedback and often to become aware of what is going on behind the scenes.

Compared to the accountants, who often successfully move from accountancy to business roles, lawyers tend not to do as well in making a similar transition. Often, doubts exist about lawyers’ financial literacy.  HR directors can also find it difficult to get onto boards for similar reasons. Lawyers are seen more as ‘compliance officers’ and so, unfortunately, lawyers on boards are not common nor are they much in demand. Is it because the legal profession is not seen as being commercial enough, too specialised?

How do you go about building a profile outside the legal profession? The Not for Profit world is more fertile ground for lawyers.  Ironically, though many Chairs think they don’t need a lawyer on their boards because they already have in-house advice, or they can buy it in – many of the biggest mistakes have been by my in-house legal departments not reporting issues to the top management. And if there was a senior legal person on the board then the right questions might be asked.

 

Q & A

At what point does a Chair’s opinion ‘enter the room’?  

You have to be disciplined. In large organisations, the Chair tends to be there frequently, and so gets more in-depth exposure to the major issues of the organisation.  But NEDs won’t have access to the same degree of information. You need to manage by example.  These are complex issues and not everyone has the same level of understanding.

In Board discussions, for the Chair it is a question of drawing out the pros and cons during the discussion, and though it can be tempting to push to a conclusion, it is important to encourage those NEDs who may not feel they have much to say on the topic in question to give their views. And many non-executives will add value outside the board room, given the opportunity.

 

If head hunters are prone to putting forward well-known, conventional candidates as NEDs, how does one get through the impenetrable headhunter wall? 

Ideally, Chairs need to get together as a group and lobby the head hunters to broaden the backgrounds of their network of people.

 

Miranda Leung: Former lawyer with a portfolio of satisfying roles

We recently welcomed Portfolio Lawyer, Miranda Leung, to BCKR.

Miranda left Slaughter and May three years ago after 26 years with the firm.  She had spent four years in Hong Kong in that time but the rest in London as a finance lawyer.

Miranda decided to leave Slaughters when her mother became unwell and she returned to Hong Kong to be closer to her family.  She had no other plans.  She just knew she didn’t want to do part time law and ultimately wanted to remain in London.  She did have an interest in interior design and signed up for a course in London but as it turned out, she soon realised that she didn’t have the patience to deal with interior design clients and learning all the relevant software programmes etc, so decided to keep this interest as a hobby.

Her portfolio career developed by chance.   Her first trustee role with China Literature Ltd (a subsidiary of Tencent whom she used to act for) came about when the Chair, who she also knew through a transaction, heard she was retiring invited her to a drink and the process went on from there.  China Literature only started up 7 years ago but is now the largest e-book seller with a revenue of $11 billion, with 11 million books, accounting for 84% of the best-selling literature in China.  Miranda sits on their Audit and Risk and RemCo Committees.  Her main role is as an Independent Non-Executive Director.  The Independents’ role is to police transactions between the parent company and the listed company and frame policies and procedures that allow day to day transactions to take place according to known terms.  As a lawyer, she was probably better placed to think about the details than many and she probably goes about it with rather more rigour than some. The role has allowed her to understand better the ins and outs of running a business in China and has given her a lot of board experience on the regulatory side.

Miranda then got a role in London with the Commodities Trading Company, an investment arm of China Construction Bank, a large trader on the London Metal Exchange.   They were specifically looking for a lawyer to be a member of their board as it is a joint venture and following the r=governance rules matters.  She was chosen because of her experience as a Financial Services lawyer and it probably helped that she also speaks pretty good Mandarin.    CTC offers a very different role from her e-publishing one, as they were in the early stages of building their clientele, along with all their financially regulated systems.  They needed policies and procedures to be designed for board and regulator approval.  This role gave Miranda good hand on exposure to boards within the London financial services arena.  It requires her to have an understanding of the management team’s frustrations in having to deal with GDPR, the FRA, PRA etc.  They all come to life in this business.

These roles illustrate quite how much lawyers need to understand within a business to be good non-execs – how to get operational systems right, and how to evidence proper controls and checks across all departments of the business on a day to day basis.  Being in tune as to how changes in personnel can affect the business is also critical, as well as how they have to integrate group policies dictated from China that may not fit squarely with the business at all.

Miranda’s third role is with the Cambodian children’s charity Starfish.  Although the economic situation in Cambodia is improving, 40% still earn less than $2 a day.  The charity picks up kids from the slums who have no education.

  • They run catch-up programmes until state school will take them.
  • They provide them with extra curricula lessons to help them get better jobs, including English lessons, IT skills and soft skills as most of these children have no adults who have ever had a job to help them.
  • They also help with vocational training.
  • They also operate a large football outreach programme, involving about 3500 kids receiving weekly coaching, 40% of whom are girls

The role came about knowing someone on the board.  Miranda felt that the organisation was small enough to feel like a family but had a board with trustees with lots of different skills. Having teamed up with a large Hong Kong school – they are large enough to be able to make a real difference.

So, in conclusion, each role is satisfying in different ways.

Her Linked-In profile has been important in making connections.  A new role with Aviva has emerged this way on their With Profits committee.  Previous clients are a good source and people who know you in different industries.

Tim Ingram: Lawyers can be the very best Non-Executives

Contrary to what Chairs may think, people who have been lawyers are very well suited to being non-executives.

Tim was a banker for many years, then ran an investment company, but he’s also been on the board of 15 listed companies over the last 30 years, as an exec, non-exec, chairman and SID.  The very best non-exec he’s ever observed was a lawyer, from Linklaters, Charles Allen-Jones.

It is important for potential non-executives to understand what a board does.  To be clear they don’t originate strategy or run the company.  This is management’s role.  Big decisions always come from management.  Boards have to approve them, and it is extremely unusual for a board to reject them, and if they do, it is normally the route to the exit door for the executive.  This is not because boards have no real role.  Instead it is because plenty of discussions will have been held on a particular topic inside and outside the boardroom before important decisions are finally taken.  So, it is not problematic when a board simply agrees a proposal or modifies it only very slightly.

Non-execs are there to keep company and management out of trouble.  They oversee it and make sure it doesn’t do the wrong things.

When boards are being composed, generally you need one director with suitable finance experience and someone else with deep industry experience in the same area as the company.  But there is room for more industry experience than this.  It is important that non-execs can act constructively and cohesively.  No one wants to encourage dysfunction.

The role of the chairman is to work very closely with the CEO so that the chair is sufficiently briefed about any major decisions that have to be taken and is confident that the other non-execs will approve the CEO’s proposals.  If a decision were to be turned down at the board, then that would also be seen as the chair’s failure.

If you don’t like the idea of being a NED then don’t do it.  But if you do like the idea then you should absolutely go for it as Tim reiterated that he thinks lawyers make very good NEDs for the following reasons (Tim’s 7 points):

  1. Every legal firm is a capitalist business – not a political or government entity. You understand what business is about and operate daily in the commercial world.
  2. How a board works is through constructive challenge of management in a non-confrontational way. That’s exactly how you challenge and advise your clients.  It is in lawyers’ DNA.

One example – a major FTSE 250 company with 2 new non-execs.  One lawyer and one former CEO.  The CEO could not adapt to the constructive, rather than dictatorial, style of the board.  The lawyer succeeded Tim Ingram as SID as she was really good. Keeping management on the straight and narrow is an art, and she knew how to do it.

  1. Lawyers are there to see the company avoids mistakes. Lawyers spend their time clearing up mistakes and organising things to avoid mistakes.  People from an executive world do not see their job as avoiding mistakes, but rather as making things happen.  Very different.
  2. Board papers. They can run to 1000 pages.  A lawyer can grasp key points quickly.  Management often don’t have this skill.  Often a non-exec has to rely on management telling him what’s important but useful.
  3. Industry knowledge. The chair will want sector knowledge and many lawyers have a legal specialism with detailed knowledge of the company’s arena.  Though legal knowledge itself isn’t so often useful, there are times when it is.  For instance, at UK Wind,  Tim frequently does new share issues.  It is not unhelpful to have a lawyer on the board who can assure the others that what the bankers etc are offering is ‘quite normal’ and ‘okay’.
  4. Corporate governance is increasingly important. It’s all about keeping companies out of trouble. It’s second nature to someone with a legal background.  It’s much harder to grasp for other first time non-execs.
  5. If you follow a NED career you might be on several boards in completely different arenas.  It can be quite strange for someone who’s only ever worked in one area, but this doesn’t faze a lawyer who most likely will have dealt with lots of different businesses at the same time in their day job.

Diversity in the board room can be aided by having a lawyer there, a legal mind and background.  Diversity is much more than gender.

 

How do non-execs get appointed?

Headhunters

Not simply by knowing people anymore.  When a new non-exec is being recruited [for a listed company] it MUST be done through a headhunter.  You need to proactively go to headhunters – don’t be reticent – they need the raw material and they don’t generally go on desktop research, just from their own lists.  Get on those lists.  The chair gives the headhunter a list of the type of things he/she wants.  The headhunter produces a longlist, which may include a lawyer, and will then chat through each potential candidate with the chair and what they can bring to the role.  So, if you can get the “Tim’s 7 points” across to the headhunter when you meet them, the headhunter is more able to relay to those competencies to the chair.  You need to keep going back to the headhunters and repeating that process.  That’s the same for every individual, not just lawyers.  You have to put yourself in the headhunter’s mind.

The younger a headhunter, the more likely they are to be more worldly and able to see the lawyer’s strengths.  It helps if you can get an introduction.

The longlist has to be people that the headhunter believes will want to be put forward – so if they don’t know you are currently looking they won’t put you on a longlist.

As a charity non-exec, remember that the people you are overseeing have very different motivations from the people you see on the corporate side.  E.g. a charity CEO has been known to ask for a salary cut.  But apart from that, there are remarkably few differences in the way they operate.  The 7 features are equally applicable.  They still need your expertise and they still need a strategy.  A charity is a form of business,  it can’t go on making deficits if it is to serve its purpose.  There has to be a certain commerciality to how it is run, which may be lost on former civil servants or politicians.

The average life of a former CE on a board can be short.  Lawyers are rarely tapped on the shoulder, once on the board.

 

The CV

It is important to get Tim’s 7 points across.  You need to underplay and hardly mention the pure legal experience – it’s hardly worth anything.  It’s the ability to get the point across in a constructive manner that will count.

It is important as a chairman to have SOMEONE on the board who scan reads all the 1000 pages of the board papers.  It is a useful skill.  Especially for regulated businesses.

One success of Tim’s was getting the PRA to change their views on whether all non-execs should have satisfactory knowledge of the banking and financial environment – he pointed out the need for diverse views to avoid group think.

An audit chair is unlikely to be a lawyer.  A specific need for business experience is unlikely to be met by a lawyer.  The downside could be that lawyers don’t understand the business at all – services businesses are easier for lawyers than e.g. a car business.  But you can overcome this by your own experiences.

Chair of Rem Com – lawyers well suited to that role.  The key role of that committee is to ensure there is fair division of spoils between owners and management, with lots of advice from Rem consultants.  Quite a lot results in changes to the employment contracts.  Chair of Rem has to do that work.  There is now a lot more scrutiny of executive pay in the charity sector too.

The SID has one duty.  To make sure the relationship between the chairman and chief executive works well.  If another non-exec has a concern, then they should have a word with the SID to raise the issue.

If you do decide to pursue a NED career,  don’t expect it to happen straightway.  Keep at it.  Every six months or so, do the rounds of headhunters again.  Keep yourself in their minds.  Educate them on everything lawyers can bring to a board which business executives cannot.

 

Moni Mannings: Portfolio Life During and After Law – a BCKR Success Story

Moni sees her career has having two halves.  The first half being a traditional legal career, starting in the banking department at Clifford Chance, followed by 6 years as a partner at Simmonds and Simmonds and then to Dewy Ballantine where she was their first UK partner hire.  In 2000 she left to set up the banking department of Olswang and within a year was asked to head up their main corporate department, which delivered half the firm’s revenue and came with a seat on the board.  The financial crisis followed swiftly thereafter, and she had to restructure her department which meant a 15% cost reduction i.e. people.  Over the next 13 years of her management career, as a law firm board member, she was part of a team that implemented 3 changes of CEO, 4 acquisitions and 2 further rounds of redundancy.  It was all about running things and being involved in a business.

Finally, in 2016, after 30 years Moni decided to leave law altogether.  She was lucky to be invited to become COO of Aistemos, a data analytics start-up for which she had zero experience.  She stayed there for two year and then launched fully into the second half of her career in the non-executive arena.

The transition

The transition came about with a lot networking. A bit of luck too, and a bit of planning, but mostly networking!  The most important decision Moni made was to start her plural non-exec life while still at Olswang.  It genuinely benefits both the firm and the individual.

In 2011 she took on two not for profit roles, one as a non-exec at the SRA and one as a trustee on a small charity board.  The SRA role was particularly helpful going forward, since the SRA and her committee had a strong executive team so she had to learn to be non-executive.  After that, she could demonstrate that she had non-executive experience when it came to her board CV.  Smaller charities, with no executives, do not offer that evidence.

In 2014 Moni took on her first commercial non-exec role with Polypipe at time of its IPO and was asked to chair the RemCo, having no experience of industry or Rem.

 

How Moni built her portfolio in those 3 years

  • Motivation: she spent time thinking about why she wanted this new career and for Moni, after 30 years as a lawyer, she just wanted to work differently, to get closer to business, not further away. Think hard as you will be asked, and you need to be able to answer with authenticity.  How you come across matters so spend time working it out.  She was still a partner at Olswang, and she believes that worked in her favour as there tends to be bias/prejudice against you if you are not in role.
  • Networking: she joined a number of different networks; they will not necessarily give you a job, but they do expand your circle of contacts. Reach out further; FT NED Club; Winmark, WoB and the Professional Boards Forum; and genuinely and relentlessly follow up every contact and opportunity.  Ask for advice and when you do so, often comes an opportunity. People are open with their time and it is important to let them know who you are, what you’re good at, and that you are looking and available; the process works such that headhunters etc regularly contact people they’ve met for recommendations of who to approach for roles.  This keeps you live with the headhunters.
  • Getting help writing her board CV: it is very different from writing an executive CV. Moni attended a Board CV masterclass from WoB (BCKR also runs CV workshops). The value is that it teaches you the whole way of viewing your executive career using language that resonates with boards.  It is not just the bit of paper at the end.  You need to look at your career through the NED lens  (e.g. partnership promotion panel = nominations committee; in-role impact = oversaw 3 CEO changes).   (Moni has provided her original CV template which BCKR can forward on request.)
  • Headhunters: it is really important that they know who you are, which is easier said than done. The best way is to be introduced by one of their clients.  But be aware – they are not career advisers.  Treat any ‘chat’ as a pre-interview – so prepare well and be able to answer the following questions:
    • Why do you want to be a NED?
    • What did you deliver?
    • What were the challenges you were asked to deliver on?
    • Why do you think you’d be a good non-exec?

You have to do all of the above consistently – always keeping your network warm.  It is very hard to get airtime with the headhunters.  You need to feed them with nuggets they can use to sell you.  Think about how you present yourself – in the same way you think about a pitch for business.

 

What do boards and chairs look for in NEDs (apart from sector experience)?

Commercial acumen; financial literacy; being able to articulate thoughts in business language; an ability to view things through a wider lens.

Lawyers thrive on complexity and ambiguity; they have a knowledge and understanding of risk; they have the personality trait of courage to challenge constructively; they have intellectual flexibility to think laterally beyond their own expertise.  It is your broader business experience that will help you thrive.  Articulating your understanding/experience of dramatic changes in market conditions; internal changes; your responsibility for P&L etc can be useful in speaking the language of the board room.

Unfortunately, headhunters want to put people in boxes.  You have to give them a box to put you in, but then be broader than that in what you show them you can offer.  Boards do not like single skills.

But things are improving. There are not enough people in the board room who think like lawyers, absorbing complexity and finding a route through it.

 

How did you get your first roles?

SRA: Moni was approached by a headhunter and on this occasion, she was ready to say yes.

Polypipe: She had joined the Professional Boards Forum and had followed up with various coffess with those she met.  This meant she had been chatting to one of the chairs.  She went on a long list as a result this conversation – a year later.  A headhunter phoned her to enquire about the role and Moni later learned that that chair, Alan Thompson, had asked for her to go on the list.  Despite having no experience at all she got the role.  Alan, by now Chair of Polypipe, later said that he wanted someone unfamiliar and smart who knew the rules and would be good for their RemCom.  He already had plenty of people who knew the business.

It was easier to get the next role once she had Polypipe.  Moni had been telling people she was looking for a charity role in children, social care, social mobility and that is when the role at Barnardo’s came along.  There was much more complexity in this institution than in Polypipe, a £350 million charity with 8,000 staff and 22,000 volunteers.  Despite it being a volunteer role, Moni sees this as akin to a corporate non-executive role in terms of responsibility, challenge and fulfilment.

Other roles have come about through assiduous contact with headhunters – continuously updating them on changes in her career.

Cranfield: Her role here came through BCKR! BCKR’s first direct approach for a non-exec role.  It is an unusual university which has helped in other roles – being able to talk about relationships with other industries.

 

How do you characterise the bias against lawyers?

The stereotype is that lawyers are uncommercial; essentially narrow; pedantic; can be hired by the hour so not needed.  This part is changing with the focus now on diversity which includes backgrounds and mindset so there’s more opportunity to push the ‘think differently’ concept as part of the diversity debate.

 

Are not for profit roles important in the non-exec journey?

Yes, especially when there is an executive team, so you are learning the non-executive way – ‘nose is in, fingers out’ .  People are buying you as a non-executive person. They want to know what you are interested in, why type of person you are.  All roles you take on demonstrate this.

 

Is there value on the FT Non-exec course?

It shows commitment to the path you want to take and may fill in knowledge gaps.  Moni has not done the course, but nonetheless sought to fill-in the gaps in the areas she felt she lacked knowledge by other means, e.g. the PWC course on Accounting principles for non-execs.  Doing the FT course doesn’t in itself help you achieve the role, but may be good for your confidence.

 

How do you respond to headhunter’s sigh as you tell them you are a lawyer? 

Inhabit your own board CV so you can defend your approach to the non-exec world; the emphasis needs to be within yourself; review what you’ve done through a different lens.  Do not lead with your legal attributes.

 

Did you have a coach?

Not one person, but she genuinely sought advice and still asks for outside input for many.

 

How did you get the role with the data analytics company?

An ex colleague and former partner said “Come and join me”, and she was leaving the law anyway. Moni said yes in part out of insecurity and because of seeing it as the furthest thing from being a lawyer.  It turns out that being COO is doing everything that the CEO and CFO don’t want to do.  You fail all the time and take regular decisions on what’s ‘good enough’.  It certainly  gets rid of the idea that you have to have the absolutely right answer.  Those two years were much more valuable than doing any of the courses.  She left because she got the Barnardo’s role.

 

Now that you are looking to refresh your board roles – what matters to you? 

The people who are on the board, culture and values; keeping her portfolio broad.  It is important now that there is a career path in what she is doing so opportunities to be SID or chairing a committee will play a part in her choices.  Women predominantly get their chairs from within, so she’s aware of that.  Social purpose matters more now than it did before; will she make a valuable contribution to society?

 

 

Richard Meddings: Network, broaden your business knowledge and get up to speed on issues facing businesses today

We recently welcomed hugely experienced Chairman Richard Meddings to BCKR.

 

Board dynamics

Richard began by stressing that anyone hoping to join a board (particularly in the commercial sector) should realise the amount of the work that’s done outside the boardroom. One of Richard’s early boardroom mistakes was to underestimate the importance of the informal interaction, both between the board members themselves and also between the executive team and members of the board. It is easy to assume that you just turn up for the meetings, when actually it is an area of significant communication and ‘social dynamic’.

 

How are boards built?

As a Chair, you obviously have to tick certain boxes when appointing NEDs, such as appointing the chairs of Audit, Remuneration and (particularly in Financial Services) Risk. And you need to have some back-up in place, do some succession planning. In addition to the formal board committees, some boards now have new sub-committees, for example for Strategy and for Tech.  Tech is fast becoming a new type of board sub-committee; however the challenge is that the current available experience and focus tends to be on Cyber risk – but the board’s focus on technical issues needs to be broader than that. The Senior Independent Director (SID) is also a very important role, a form ‘consiglieri’ or trusted adviser to the Chair and other board members.

For lawyers, this is a difficult area to break into, as the Chair generally feels that legal advice can be bought in as and when needed and that the CEO has his/her General Counsel anyway. So, to overcome that hurdle you need to demonstrate different, broader skills. Boards are not composed of people because of their specific executive skills, they need to be able to advise the business as a whole. So when making your case, DON’T lead with your Legal experience!

And remember that an effective Chair is always looking at the dynamics of the board and is in constant contact with the board-level head hunters, so, looking ahead, make yourself known to the head hunters.

 

Do you really want to do this?

The regulatory pressures are very demanding these days, particularly in Financial Services. Being on a FS board can be a very intense regime; you have to expect difficult days ahead.  Financial Services is a highly complex area and produces large quantities of very detailed reports; boards are expected by the Regulator to understand the micro detail.

So why would you do it?  After all you don’t get paid very much.

One of the main reasons that people are motivated to join a board is a wish to remain ‘relevant’ after completing an executive career which will have had momentum and intellectual stimulation. Being able to continue to learn new things is also a very important motivation.

In many ways, being on the boards of smaller companies is more interesting and is often an easier place for NEDs to contribute in terms of actually running a business, rather than focusing more on regulatory and compliance issues.

Richard feels he was lucky in that his first external board role was at 3i plc, at a time when he was Finance Director at Standard Chartered plc.  The bank felt it was very important for their main board executives to get non-executive experience, partly in order to gain an understanding of what it is like for the NEDs ‘on the other side of the table’ and 3i provided that very well.

You learn pretty quickly that there is limited opportunity in the boardroom for asking questions.  You might have the chance to make around six comments during a meeting. What is important is that the NEDs don’t try to use the board meeting to ‘to crowd’ the executives on the board. NEDs should bring a current general commercial perspective, not just rely on their particular past functional executive experience.

 

Networking and visibility

Your first board appointment gets you into the general NEDs network. Head hunters host frequent lunches and receptions for board members. The earlier you start the better; cultivate senior external contacts and learn from them. This is just as important if you are targeting non-commercial roles (Not-for Profit, Government boards etc) – by the way Government NED roles are really interesting!

For all would-be NEDs, you need to be known and seen – and you need to be able to display broad commercial knowledge and judgement. Law firms tend to lack this kind of profile so you need to think hard about how you can get into these networks.

As a profession you lag behind in the self-promotion stakes – particularly compared to Investment Bankers. They have greater success that Lawyers in getting onto boards but probably less to contribute once they are there. But they are more adept at showing they understand the dynamics of companies and sectors, which is very important.

 

Other points

What do you think of Not for Profit board experience when building your own boards?

They tend to be less managed but potentially provide good experience and often there are NEDs/Trustees from the commercial sector on these boards. For example Teach First has a very interesting mix of different skill sets on their board. Government boards seem open to  lawyers coming onto their boards, and the work is very interesting.

 

Head hunters

Go to meet head hunters (unfortunately they are very powerful and some are incredibly lazy, particularly about thinking out of the box)).  You need to stay at the top of their pile.  Don’t present yourself as a lawyer but as someone who runs an international business.

You need to provide other reference points. Provide some ‘soft referees’, people who can talk about your judgement and range of experience and how you manage people issues. Though board diversity is a big topic with the head hunters, there doesn’t seem to be much  real desire for diversity of career background.

 

What do you think Private Equity companies seek from their NEDs?

They are deep into the financials – NEDs have to be right up to speed. Relevant sector knowledge is important and so is an ongoing focus on the actual performance of the company..

 

Conclusion

Network….and broaden your business knowledge and be up to date on issues such as diversity, environment and climate change.

Generally, as a profession, lawyers and law firms generally really need to raise their profiles. ’Have a view’ and be able to engage on non-legal business issues  Bankers always have an issue they can talk to companies and directors about.

Your first role is important – but don’t think you have to get a role on a FTSE listed company board. You get many more interesting roles as NEDs at the smaller cap end and in non-listed companies, where you can get closer to the actual running of the business, as well as in the Not for Profit sector.

Simon Page: NEDs – Can you become a sparring partner, trusted advisor and a good listener?

After 10 years in the Foreign Office, Simon moved to Egon Zehnder to become one of the five lead consultants – private partnership, lockstep, to allow them to cover a very broad range of work at the firm, and in the board practice.  Works across PLC type non-execs, government related roles and charities.

What types of roles are out there?

The broad landscape falls into 3 sectors:

  • Private sector: FTSE, 250, 350, AIM etc, private companies and start-ups, and private equity boards (a consumer of decent talent in the private sector board space)
  • Public sector:
    • central government departments (not the same as plc boards, as for many years NEDs historically felt like spare parts – but were more recently revamped by Lord Brown of BP who was appointed to be head NED at the Cabinet Office to increase their profile. This has made a huge difference to the use and effectiveness of government NEDs and greatly increased interest in the roles.
    • Non-departmental public bodies – there is a huge range. Managed in the same way as public appointments.
    • NHS operates separately from central government, but on broadly similar rules to public sector
  • Third sector: Charities, think tanks, academic works (schools to universities), housing associations

How appointments are made in practice

Private sector: FTSE 100 appointments used to be friends of the chair – but there has been a sea-change in last 15 years.  Now, 80% of major appointments ‘go through’ the headhunter process, at least to some extent.  Further down the FTSE it’s more likely to be through word of mouth and personal connection though Harvey Nash does an awful lot of smaller listed companies.  They have in common that they are rarely advertised in the media.

Public sector:  MUST be advertised to maintain the perception of fairness, and increasing diversity.  That’s the official government line.  The Public Appointments website is well run and lists all roles available at any one time.

Third sector: will often advertise via The Guardian online or on their own website.  There is partial transparency in the process but these roles are rarely advertised in paper.

Process is then the same for all, with the nominations committee narrowing down to four or five candidates for interviews and then one or two, who will meet the chief executive.

The nature of the involvement of CEO is interesting.  They should not have the final say as it is not meant to be their appointment, but as a chair has to work together with the CEO, when appointing a Chair, candidates will often meet the CEO and the CEO can be very influential.  In charities it is even more important to be independent.  The process often finishes with a confirmatory meeting with a larger group of executives and non-execs to allow candidates to meet broader base of the board.

There is an increasing tendency for appointments to be made by panel interview process, which Simon disagrees with.  The behaviour of panel members becomes very formal, with lists of questions, each allocated to individual panel members, but presented to candidates as unconnected sets of questions asked by separate people.  This favours a candidate who has fluent, shallows answers to a lot of questions rather than deep answers to a few.

The typical approach of a PLC is to meet candidates individually or two on one, which works out better with more interview time, different views, an ability to follow up and compare notes afterwards which Simon believes allows a fair comparison.  But despite his urging, he doesn’t believe the government process will change.

What are they looking for?

Fundamentally NEDs are there to be a good sparring partner for the CEO and the executive team, so most of the interview should be about how the candidates will react with other board members and bring their knowledge and experience in a good way.  They are looking for members who behave like a trusted adviser, not a content expert.  More often qualitative than a skills based interview.  Listening skills are strongly sought after.

Massively and rightly, boards in all these sectors are looking for diversity.  Egon Zehnder clients and others are treating this as a fundamental aim.  The UK has made a pretty good improvement in gender balance of some boards, by coercion and encouragement, without need for quotas, but is still very strongly looking to improve diversity which places white males at a disadvantage.  In UK the focus is still mostly about gender, in the US ethnicity is now equally important but LGBT and other elements don’t get a look in.

Lawyers and board roles:

We don’t have the appointment of lawyers as the norm – unlike US and European companies.  It’s not been the practice.  Partly because of UK board’s unitary structure.  The pattern for the executives is to match the career of the executives with the non-execs – man-marking.  Some UK lawyers have moved onto UK boards very successfully.  The skills that need to be deployed are; risk, which adds a lot of value; lawyers (and bankers) make a really strong contribution on strategy; the perception of what other stakeholders will think of decisions; and their network.

Base case reduces the number of lawyers – the existing board members can understand better the career of a finance director.  Lawyers risk being seen as too narrow.

How to go about getting a role?

It is important to go through a process of self-reflection before embarking on the search for a portfolio career.

  • What is your real level of interest? Lots of board roles are admin and not particularly interesting, ‘governancy’ heavy. Think about whether it’s really something you’d enjoy.
  • What time commitment can you offer? 50 days pa for FTSE companies, more for the big banks, and generally 15 days a year for any small role and not all can be done in the evenings.

The Shrek group of headhunters (Spencer Stuart, Heidricks, Russell Reynolds, Egon Zehnder and Korn Ferry) consist of the main players in the board practice area.

For the FTSE 250 – Hanson Green and a few others

For charities – Saxton Bampfylde, Odgers and Perret Laver

Other ways to enhance you personal brand are through networking, thought pieces or speaking at conferences. All go to raising your profile.  Getting a board mentor can be useful.

Developing a portfolio takes two or three years at least, as even the processes themselves can take a long time in the public sector.  So be patient.  And remember it is much easier to get on a board than to get off one.

Q&A

How does one get on Egon Zehnder’s radar when looking for a role?

The London office has 50 consultants, 8 of whom form the board practice.  They have a central group of researchers who assist.  The practice meetings work as a clearinghouse for ideas but the rigour comes from the researchers.

As a minimum, upload your CV etc onto their portal.  It is always useful to be able to meet one of the consultants directly and personal introductions work very well.

NuRole and WoB are effective in advancing the cause of diversity.  However the big firms have had to develop lists of quality senior female candidates.

The PE recruitment process:

PE does like to run it their way, with their own views.   Formal arrangements exist with people who can become their chairs of acquired companies. They are not unsophisticated in this, with a reasonably sized stable of candidates; but at the lower level they are using headhunters, as they don’t have enough candidates known to the PE houses. EBRD has its own network for potential NED candidates.

How to you prepare your CV?

Fine tuning of the wording of a CV probably won’t move the dial very much.  Key facts speak for themselves in a digestible form. Don’t bother with the introductory paragraph.  What headhunters need to see are the numbers of people you’ve managed, scale of budget, revenue etc.  It is hard for lawyers but look for ways to make some statements that give an idea of scale, types of people you influence.

You have to overcome the prejudices and negative perceptions that lawyers are too technical, detailed or challenging.  Early type board positions, which are not easy to do but fairly accessible to obtain, help humanise the candidate, such as chair of school governors, charity board experience etc.