Board re­al­ity check

The Advertiser - Careers - - Executive, Professional & Management -

WORK­ERS need to an­a­lyse t h e i r a i ms b e f o r e nom­i­nat­ing for a com­mit­tee or a board to pre­vent dam­age to their ca­reers, a ca­reer con­sul­tant says.

IB Coach­ing or­gan­i­sa­tion de­vel­op­ment con­sul­tant Mery­dith Wil­loughby says many em­ploy­ees rightly as­pire to be on com­mit­tees and boards as they move up the cor­po­rate lad­der but not enough ad­here to the right be­hav­iours.

She says too many work­ers join a com­mit­tee for the wrong rea­sons and do not ful­fil their obli­ga­tions.

It can harm their ca­reer ad­vance­ment in the long run as they get a rep­u­ta­tion for be­ing a slacker, self­ish or not hav­ing skills.

‘‘Some do so be­cause it will look good on their CV,’’ she says. ‘‘Oth­ers are se­ri­ous about their com­mit­ment and will work hard to achieve the con­sti­tu­tional goals.

‘‘While the pas­sion and en­thu­si­asm is there in the be­gin­ning, far too many do not do what they said they would and leave it up to the rest of the com­mit­tee.’’

She ad­vises work­ers to an­a­lyse why they want to be part of the com­mit­tee or board, whether it’s for ca­reer ad­vance­ment or to help an or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Work­ers also need to set their ten­ure with the group and de­cide how much time they can com­mit to the po­si­tion.

‘‘Cer­tainly be­fore I com­mit to a com­mit­tee I will find out ex­actly what the re­quire­ments and com­mit­ments are be­cause I have been caught out too many times with be­ing told there would only be a few hours’ com­mit­ment when the re­al­ity was dif­fer­ent,’’ Ms Wil­loughby says.

‘‘I am only in­ter­ested in be­ing on com­mit­tees if I am pas­sion­ate and en­thu­si­as­tic about their func­tion, be­cause it takes my time away from other things.

‘‘To nom­i­nate just be­cause I want to look good is wrong.’’

Pic­ture: Thinkstock

Join­ing a board is a se­ri­ous com­mit­ment for em­ploy­ees.

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