Business leaders reminded of the importance of “Good Governance” as Scotiabank Women Initiative (SWI) launches advisory pillar

Kingston, Jamaica – July 20, 2022 -Corporate governance consultant, Julie Thompson-James has sought to remind business leaders, CEOs and company directors that solid corporate governance practices help to make good companies great and positions such entities to attract capital and boost business.

Speaking at the launch of the Scotiabank Women Initiative (SWI) Advisory Pillar, Thompson-James noted that “Sitting as a CEO or a director is very serious business. If it (the company) is not run the way it should be, it invites personal liability for you as a director,” she warned. “It is not a friend and company thing, but it must be formal and respectful.”

In contextualising the initiative, SWI Project Lead, Nadine Heywood expressed pride at the launch of the final pillar, roughly six months since the programme’s launch in January.

“We are tremendously happy to have been able to engage these women and guide them on their journeys as business leaders. Employing good corporate governance is beneficial to the company, its leaders, investors and clients as it helps to mitigate risk and safeguard the organization’s interests,” Heywood said.

Thompson-James , who is the chief proprietor of Cube Corporate Support Ltd. was invited by Scotiabank to deliver the first in a series of workshops and other interventions aimed at providing governance and advisory assistance to women in business, ultimately satisfying the initiative’s goal of breaking down barriers to increase economic and professional opportunities for women to be successful.

The two-day conference saw several women business owners and leaders engaged about matters pertaining to corporate governance including identifying gaps and determining practical solutions where needed. Other topics covered included fostering a culture of privacy, developing leadership and influence capabilities, and managing board relations.

According to Thompson-James, some emerging and heightened trends in the corporate governance space include diversity, equity, and inclusion; greater focus on environmental, social and governance; increasing importance for corporate purpose; and technology and cybersecurity.

During her presentation, Thompson-James encouraged the female leaders to be bold in representing their companies to the various stakeholders to which they are accountable.

“The essence of any system of good corporate governance is to allow the Board and Management the freedom to drive their organisation forward but to exercise that freedom within a framework of effective accountability. The basic principles of effective corporate governance are transparency, accountability and corporate control,” she stated.

As more boards become diversified, she encouraged the women leaders to solidify their value when sitting on boards, by contributing opinions to discussions and decision-making exercises.

She added, “Implementing an excellent corporate governance system, will also ensure that the company protects its members, officers and management and drives accountability and compliance with local regulations.”

Gia Abraham, who attended the two-day conference, lauded the SWI for coordinating the sessions which she said acted as a refresher course for her to take her company, CAC 2000 Limited, to the next level.

The CAC 2000 CEO continued, “The two days have given me the stepping-stone to go to the next phase of what I will need to do from a board level as well as a data privacy level in my company.”