Melbourne Pathway to the Boardroom

By Michelle Gardiner Partner – Board Practice

Published Date: 2017/04


Derwent Melbourne held another successful Pathway to the Boardroom event on Thursday 30th November at Maddocks. Derwent were joined by guest speakers Kelly Humphreys, Kathleen Bailey - Lord and Andrew Maughan.

Our speakers provided insightful knowlege on their personal journey to the boardroom. Kelly approached her search for NED roles using her project management expertise. She spent considerable time evaluating her career experience and putting that experience into the context of what she would offer a board. And then embarked on her networking journey with a view to getting herself known and establishing her credentials.

Kathleen strongly cautioned people against viewing NED roles as providing greater flexibility than an executive role. NED roles require significant time and effort to understand the company and its business context. Given her focus has been on technology she spends considerable time ensuring she is up to date with the latest advances in technology. Kelly also responded to the question around gender diversity; it is far more about balance across skills and experience and being reflective of the marketplace.

In the area of due diligence, Andrew emphasized the need to meet the bankers, auditors, review previous financial statements/board minutes and increasingly sit in on a board meeting and observe the dynamics of the board. His experience on government boards (as echoed by the broader group) is that the stakeholder management is far more extensive in terms of ministerial and community engagement.