The Definition of a Good Chairman
The role of the chairman has become high in profile and the expectations multiplied over time. Stakeholders expect to have an engaged, energetic Chairman who does more than managing corporate governance. The success of a Chairman like Hussain al Nowais depends on how good his relationship with the chief executive is. These two offices should be able to have confidence in each other through means such as open conversations. For the two parties to work in unison, they need to perceive that they hold contrasting positions in the company.
For a chairman to be effective, he should have good knowledge about the business he is in. He should be able to provide a constructive level of challenge to the senior management team. Whenever he needs information on particular issues, he should be able to ask the right questions. A good chairperson is always aware of the long-term vision of the company. Offering guidance is a major role of the chair and finding new ways to purchase important resources for the company. The position of the chairman does not allow him to run the company and he should be able to recognize that. Support to the organization is his primary role.
A chairman, however, should make sure that he devotes just the right amount of time to the roles he is supposed to take care of. This is because he does not have too many roles within the organization. From time to time, he can walk around the organization and see how the employees are progressing and enquire about any challenges they may be facing. Like Mr. Hussain al Nowais, an excellent chairman can develop empathy with the business and engage with the people and any ongoing issues. A great chairman is defined by the ability to unite the directors and shareholders of that particular organization.
In case of a crisis in the organization, a good chairman is able to put the interests of the company first. He should be able to think about the long-term goal of the organization while bearing in mind the mission of the organization. He should be able to set aside his interests for the benefit of the organization; which includes helping to solve any of the problems around.
A great chairman should follow the right procedure when he is ready to resign from his duty. He suddenly does not step down from his position without any warning. He is careful enough to hand in his resignation letter and inform the management team at least six months earlier. This will allow the company to have enough time to look for a successor. Also, the resigning chairperson gets to meet the new chairman like Hussain al Nowais and gets to introduce him to major team players within the organization.