Free webinars

It’s sometimes difficult to find the time to step back and take a look at what we’re doing, why, and how. This can be a particular challenge for directors – but now, more than ever, we need to address fundamental questions about our businesses and how we run them.

That’s why we’ve put together a series of stimulating and thought-provoking webinars to give you just that opportunity, completely free of charge.

The sessions address a range of issues, linked by the underlying need to take a fresh look at things – at the changing world around us, at our businesses, at our effectiveness as directors.

All the webinars run on Thursday mornings, 10:00-10:45 UK time. Advance booking essential. Book on as many sessions as you like – there’s no limit. And tell your fellow directors about them too. Full details below.

Is your business still ‘a going concern’?

Questions you need to ask yourself

Is now really the time to be concerned about paragraphs 3.8 and 3.9 of the Financial Reporting Standard 102?

Sadly, yes. When you assure the auditors – or the bank – that your business is ‘a going concern’ within the meaning of the FRS and sign accounts to that effect do you really understand what you’re signing up to? You’re making a statement that there are no material uncertainties affecting your business. If there are uncertainties then you need to be clear about what they are.

Now is exactly the time to think about this very seriously, to:

  • understand when you might have to face sad reality
  • prepare for the question in your next conversation with the bank or at the next financial year end when you have to ask yourself searching questions – as your auditors will (or ought to)
  • more positively, be aware of all the reasons for not being a going concern so that you can avoid, manage and overcome them

Join this free webinar to find out what you should be asking yourself and why – and to start working out the answers.

What’s in it for you?

  • Properly understand what you’re committing to when you say to the bank, the auditors and anyone else who’s going to read your accounts that your business is indeed ‘a going concern’
  • Avoid being in breach of your legal duties as a director (which is what you would be if you were to make inaccurate statements in your accounts)
  • Understand what is meant by ‘material uncertainties’
  • Be prepared to address, evidence and document the question in your next set of accounts – or, perhaps more imminently, your next letter to the bank
  • Know how to take a proactive approach, using the definitions of ‘a going concern’ and ‘material uncertainties’

Your host

Ralph is a recognised authority on Financial Reporting Standards, with his own chartered accountancy and statutory auditing practice, focusing on audit and also supporting clients with advisory work in areas such as governance, risk management, internal control, budgeting, project appraisal, IFRS, ethics and fraud prevention.

A very popular speaker, trainer and author, he has a gift for putting these issues into plain English.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     A GOING CONCERN

2     MATERIAL UNCERTAINTIES

3     ASSURING BANKS AND AUDITORS

4     POSITIVE ACTIONS

5     NEXT STEPS

Developing a post Covid-19 risk paradigm

Time for iceberg thinking?

Whatever we might have imagined our businesses having to deal with this year, it is unlikely to have been the challenging level of health and economic impact that has been wrought globally by Covid-19. Even companies that had the word ‘pandemic’ on their risk registers are unlikely to have expected the large-scale shutdown of corporate life as we know it.

As we contemplate moving back into a world of renewed, but changed, normality we need to think differently about risk and control.

  • Have we identified the core drivers and differentiators for our organisation’s USP?
  • Have we drilled down deep enough to achieve clarity of cause and effect against those drivers?
  • What tools, models and methods can help us to contemplate the new paradigm required?
  • Are we taking the opportunity to think differently rather than just reverting to form?

Risk is all too often viewed as a continuing voyage. Just saying ‘well, we have a risk register’ or ‘we just look at the KPIs’ or ‘every day is different’ simply isn’t sufficient. We need ‘iceberg thinking’ to understand and challenge the solidity or otherwise of what lies beneath the surface. Covid-19 has brought a harsh challenge to many organisations who have found their substructures to be inadequate to survive. Now is the time to rethink our approach to risk.

What’s in it for you?

  • A challenge to proactively change the risk paradigm
  • Ideas to get you started

Your host

Mark has had the privilege over the last 40 years of working with directors and senior teams in organisations of all sizes and context.

He has a holistic interest in all aspects of business and is driven by the perpetual challenge of trying to understand seemingly irrational behaviour from people who ought to know better.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     RISK PERSPECTIVES

  • Risk versus uncertainty
  • The danger of an historic risk paradigm
  • Challenging the organisational iceberg

2     RISK PATTERNS

  • Supply-chain patterns
  • People patterns
  • Systemic patterns

3     RISK PARADIGMS

  • Renewing the vision
  • Exploring the depths of understanding
  • Developing new methods of working

Purpose – will yours change?

What is your company’s purpose today? Will it be the same in the future?

Join this free webinar to check where you are with purpose, how corporate purpose may change, how an honest purpose can help drive the business.

Does your board discuss ‘purpose’? Today businesses are meant to have ‘purpose’. This webinar asks a series of questions which will help you more clearly define your purpose now and in the future. It challenges what may be stated in Strategic Reports. It suggests actions to ensure that your strategic and operational plans are aligned with your defined purpose.

What’s in it for you?

This is a unique and timely opportunity to:

  • Reflect in a meaningful way on your company’s ‘purpose’
  • Clarify and restate your purpose
  • Kick-start the process of making your purpose truly drive your business

Your host

Ralph is a recognised authority on Financial Reporting Standards, with his own chartered accountancy and statutory auditing practice, focusing on audit and also supporting clients with advisory work in areas such as governance, risk management, internal control, budgeting, project appraisal, IFRS, ethics and fraud prevention.

A very popular speaker, trainer and author, he has a gift for putting these issues into plain English.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     WHAT IS CORPORATE PURPOSE?

  • Where did the idea come from?
  • Is shareholder value dead?
  • Does purpose depend on who owns the company?
  • What are the links with company culture?
  • Will corporate purpose change as a result of today’s environment?

2     IS YOUR PURPOSE GENUINE?

  • Is it manifest as simple platitudes in the Strategic Report?
  • Do your board and all employees know and understand your purpose?
  • Does it link with your operational activities?

3     LIVING YOUR PURPOSE

  • Whatever your purpose, it can be more focused:
    • Linked to strategy and tactics
    • Linked to forecasts and budgets
    • Clarifying what your risks are
    • Clarifying what has to be controlled

4     ACTIONS AND NEXT STEPS

  • Review
  • Action planning
  • Next steps

A risky business?

Five questions every board member should be able to answer about their business

Do you know the top risks facing your business? You probably do, but do you know what else you don’t know, or whether the board has a shared view on risk? Using risk information to drive boardroom discussions can help:

  • More innovation
  • Planned growth
  • Better decision-making

What is your board’s attitude to risk? Is risk part of management decision-making and the governance framework or just a tick box exercise? Join this free webinar to get, if not all the answers, at least some of the questions you should be able to answer yourself, and some of the questions you should be asking in the boardroom.

What’s in it for you?

  • Reflect on what directors need to know about risk
  • Be clear on how managing and / or taking risk informs your business strategy and decision-making
  • Find out how other organisations manage and report on risk
  • Connect with other directors with the same issues
  • Get some ideas for future boardroom discussions

Your host

Rachel is an extremely experienced governance, risk and assurance specialist. She works with boards and senior teams to improve governance and risk management, recognising their core role in delivering value to organisations and stakeholders.

She helps boards ensure they understand the risks, and opportunities, in delivering their strategy and value and that they have in place the most appropriate risk management governance and assurance.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     RISK AND THE BOARD

  • Risk pitfalls in the boardroom
  • What is the role of the Board?

2     FIVE QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO ANSWER

  • The five questions every director should be able to answer about risk – and why they are so important

3     QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD BE ASKING ABOUT RISK

  • Using risk information to drive strategy and decision-making
  • Boardroom conversations about risk
  • How do you know what you think you know? What are your known unknowns?

4     ACTIONS AND NEXT STEPS

  • Review
  • Action planning
  • Next steps

Moving from good to great in the Boardroom

Key areas you should explore with your board

The inner sanctum of the boardroom is increasingly exposed to the spotlights of greater accountability and public debate. Boards exist in a world that is increasingly complex, competitive and evolving. This requires directors to be engaged, candid and professionally curious.

Join us for a free webinar that helps you consider what it takes to become a great board.

What’s in it for you?

This is an ideal opportunity for you to:

  • Reflect on positive boardroom behaviours
  • Share common experiences
  • Rethink your approach
  • Improve your effectiveness in the boardroom

Your host

Sam is an internationally experienced consultant and trainer in corporate governance, corporate messaging, and the role of the company director. She has worked alongside numerous organisations – large and small, old and new, loved and unloved – assisting board directors and senior management teams to identify, reach out and articulate core strengths and intrinsic value to key stakeholders. Over the years Sam has undertaken board evaluations, key messaging sessions with senior executives, governance reviews, gap analysis and best practice benchmarking and investor perception studies for a wide range of UK and international clients from all sectors.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     WHAT DOES A HIGH IMPACT BOARD LOOK LIKE?

  • Characteristics of high-performing boards
  • Boardroom dynamics

2     THE BOARD AS A ‘TEAM’

  • Composition – looking in the mirror
  • Problems in and with teams

3     EXPLORING SOME COMMON BOARDROOM ISSUES

  • Forgetting why the board exists
  • Getting stuck in the weeds
  • Having difficult conversations
  • An inability to build momentum

4     MOVING THE BOARD FORWARD

  • What does the board do well?
  • What can we as the board do better?

Executive coaching

How to choose – and use – an executive or leadership coach

Have you ever wondered whether you – or any of your fellow directors – would benefit from executive coaching?

Would it help to know a bit more before deciding, one way or the other?

What are the benefits? How does it work? Most importantly, how do you choose the right coach? It’s a personal relationship, so the chemistry needs to work.

Join this free webinar to get, if not quite all the answers, at least some of the questions you should be asking of yourself and of your potential coaches, whoever they may be.

What’s in it for you?

  • Find out what executive or leadership coaching is really all about
  • Decide whether it might be for you
  • Understand the process
  • Learn how to go about choosing the right coach for you
  • Discover what questions you need to ask…
  • … and what questions you should be asked by any potential coach
  • Get some top tips on how to make the most of the coaching relationship

Your host

Elizabeth is one of the 1% of coaches in the world to have attained the coveted ICF Master Certified Coach credential. She has over 25 years of expertise in coaching and development in the UK and abroad, and was a pioneer in introducing internal coaching to the Civil Service. She has delivered well over 10,000 hours of coaching and more than 3,00 hours of coach training. She has worked with a wide range of clients and organisations, from 10 Downing Street down. Not just an executive coach, she is also a very experienced consultant, coach mentor and coach supervisor. This is a unique opportunity to benefit from her impartial advice.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     EXECUTIVE COACHING

  • What it is – and what it isn’t
  • Leadership coaching – where it helps, where it doesn’t

2     CHOOSING A COACH

  • Alignment
  • Connection
  • Engagement
  • Shortlisting
  • The ‘chemistry’ conversation
  • Questions to ask – and answer
  • Make the call

3     TOP TIPS

  • The three most common mistakes when choosing a coach
  • Seven tips for getting the most out of coaching

The sceptical director

How do we know what to trust, who to trust, and when to trust?

We all live our lives in a fish-tank of apparent transparency. We see everything and often believe nothing. We are constantly astounded at the way other people behave – ‘why can’t they be more like us?’

Developing a healthy scepticism will allow you to:

  • Mentally step back and think
  • Challenge what you are really looking at
  • Hesitate before coming to a conclusion
  • Realise the changing nature of truth

Building a recognition of the finite reality of ‘today’ (this precise moment in time) aligned with the uncertain reality of the ‘future’ (anything beyond this precise moment in time) will challenge you to explore yourself and your interactions with other people from three perspectives:

  • Strategy: where are we going and why?
  • Risk: how well do we understand the journey?
  • Control: can we think on our feet when required?

What’s in it for you?

  • Consider a new thinking style
  • Learn to recognise biases
  • Be confident in challenging yourself and others

Your host

Mark has had the privilege over the last 40 years of working with directors and senior teams in organisations of all sizes and context.

He has a holistic interest in all aspects of business and is driven by the perpetual challenge of trying to understand seemingly irrational behaviour from people who ought to know better.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     SCEPTICISM

  • What does it mean?
  • Why does it matter?
  • Scepticism versus cynicism

2     STRATEGY IN ACTION

  • Today
  • Future
  • The journey

3     RISK AND CONTROL

  • Find the right context
  • Determine the optimal questions
  • Start to think differently

The HR director’s greatest challenge?

How can you get fellow directors to advocate change and employee engagement?

Leaders come in many guises.

Some organisations are blessed with an exec team who get the need to ‘lead from the front’ and engage managers and staff on the need for change. They role model great leadership on a consistent basis.

Other boards work differently. The successful implementation of change and ‘getting people on board’ is seen almost exclusively as ‘HR stuff’, the responsibility of the HR Director alone.

OK, perhaps that’s a rather polarised view. But where on that spectrum would you put your board? How often do you wish that your fellow directors would engage just a little more with your issues, particularly around change and employee engagement, issues where not only would you be entitled to look to your fellow directors for support but where their failure to act as change advocates and drivers of engagement themselves could fatally undermine your own efforts?

If you want to move your board in the right direction, further along the spectrum, how should you best go about it? Booking on this webinar might be a good place to start.

What’s in it for you?

This webinar will give you some pragmatic ideas and tools to help you strengthen Leadership team commitment to the importance of being visible and committed to driving change at a personal level:

  • Explore how best to get commitment from the exec team
  • Consider in what respects they might lack the necessary skills and confidence and determine ways of addressing that
  • Discover how to support them in becoming visible advocates of change and employee engagement in your organisation

Your host

Paul is an ICF-accredited leadership coach, facilitator, consultant and a former HR Director.

He firmly believes that although HR has a key role to play in driving the change and engagement agenda, it is unrealistic to expect the function to succeed without the buy-in and support of the full executive and senior leadership teams.

He has been there and done it. This is an ideal opportunity to benefit from his hard-won experience.

Agenda
(10.00 – 10.45)

1     WHY CHANGE FAILS AND WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT

  • The Unwilling and The Unskilled
  • Developing Leaders who own the change and engagement agendas
  • Making the case
  • Your role as coach, mentor and sounding board

2     THE IMPORTANCE OF TRUST AND FOLLOWERSHIP

  • Why would I follow you?
  • The Trust Equation – what drives us to trust some Leaders more than others?
  • What can Leaders do to become more trustworthy?
  • How can HRDs help with that?

3     TOOLS THAT WILL HELP YOUR LEADERS TO STEP UP 

  • Change Mindset
  • Addressing what might be holding them back
  • Understanding and dealing with the wants and needs of the audience
  • Getting them to use the tools

These webinars are all completely free of charge – just make sure you book well in advance to get the ‘joining instructions’ (including a link to the Zoom webinar platform) and to be sure of a place. And remember to add them to your Outlook calendar!

The sessions are also completely confidential. You can choose whether to raise an issue or make a comment in open forum or confidentially with the presenter. The sessions are not being recorded.