NFP's Need Good Governance Too
3 July 2006 at 1:07 pm
Directors in Australia’s Not for Profit organisations need to manage conflicts of interest just as transparently and robustly as their business counterparts according to a new ‘how to’ guide published by Chartered Secretaries Australia (CSA).
The booklet is called Managing Conflicts of Interest in the NFP Sector.
CSA Chief Executive, Tim Sheehy says governance is not just about the top 200 companies. It doesn’t matter whether an organisation is driven by the bottom line, or by a deep-rooted ethical mission; he says the board’s responsibility does not change. It is to provide the strategic direction necessary to attain its goals.
Sheehy says this process can be compromised, however, if conflicts of interest come into play, and NFP’s are particularly vulnerable to these.
He says the interests of stakeholders in NFP’s are often more diffuse than the interests of those in private sector businesses, so there is considerably more scope for suspected or actual conflicts to arise. They can also be more personal, and harder to resolve.
The CSA says the booklet provides a clear framework to both identify and avoid potential conflicts, together with practical examples and tools for managing them.
CSA says it developed the guide in recognition of the large contribution NFP’s make to the community and the economy.
The practical tools provided in CSA’s booklet include a model Conflict of Interest Policy for Directors and a model Declaration of Interests form.
The booklet is available from CSA at a nominal charge by phoning 1800 251 849 or (02) 9223 5744.
Chartered Secretaries Australia (CSA) is the peak professional body delivering accredited education and practical and authoritative training and information on governance.