Dr Ije Jidenma, President, IoD, middle flanked by Dr Bola Adesola, Chairman, LSETF at immediate left, Mrs Ndidi Nwuneli, Founder, LEAP Africa and other participants at the IoD Young Directors Forum on Thursday in Lagos
Dec. 1, 2022
By Rukayat Moisemhe
Lagos, Nigeria, The Institute of Directors (IoD) and some experts on Thursday charged young directors to prioritise corporate governance practices to engender business growth and sustainability.
They spoke at the IoD Networking and Knowledge Sharing Session (NKSS) with the theme, “Unlocking Millennial Directors’ Potentials: The Place of Corporate Governance.”
Dr Ije Jidenma, president, IoD, said a major factor responsible for the high mortality rate of millennial businesses in Africa was lack of or inadequate attention to governance issues.
According to her, corporate governance is not considered a priority, and this ultimately affects the growth of promising businesses.
She stated that the Young Directors Forum (YDF) of the institute was created to serve as a network of young, talented and up-coming board leaders keen on taking advantage of the IoD platform to build capacities in corporate governance skills and practices.
“Members of the forum will also be able to access the free mentorship services of the Institute, while creating strong peer networks that add value in the course of discharging their roles and responsibilities as directors.
“Ultimately, they are groomed to become IoD Chartered Directors who give back to the society by mentoring others and supporting the growth of IoD Nigeria.
“The forum is also IoD Nigeria’s way of giving back to the society by committing to building a pipeline of future generation of technocrats, stellar board directors and business icons.
“These are the set whose businesses outlast generations because of their ethical leadership practices and sound corporate governance,” she said.
Mrs Bola Adesola, Chairman, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), noted that young businessmen were more independent, more confident, more self expressive, curious and socially conscious.
Yet, she said, they typically felt pressured and prioritised the need for speed over process which resulted in the principles of corporate governance taking a backseat in the way many young people run their businesses.
“For sustainable business growth, corporate governance must be seen as an enabler and not as an obstacle.
“We are here to facilitate further development as boardroom experts to unlock the full potential of young directors,” she said.
Mrs Ndidi Nwuneli, Founder, LEAP Africa, told young directors that to become a great board member, they must have the right director competencies of knowledge, skills, abilities and contacts.
She said directors must have adequate understanding of the business, the industry and must provide the right technical expertise and character attributes such as integrity, strong commitment level and others.
“Excellence and integrity have no hiding place and as a young director, you must be committed to bringing your A game everytime.
“You must invest in building a community of support, and when you have the opportunity to serve, you must make your presence felt and invest in building a track record of impact,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Mrs Folasade Akinmusire, Group Company Secretary, Nestoil Group, and a governance consultant, emerged as Chairman of the IoD Young Directors Forum.
She pledged to abide by the direction of supervisory committee of the IoD to deliver the YDF mandate.