IoD Members' Update
March 2021

As we mark the first anniversary of the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Ireland, it would not be an exaggeration to say that so much has changed. Much analysis and commentary will be conducted over the coming days and weeks on the transformation of everyday life, but it is safe to say, from many perspectives, that the impact on people's lives and business has been immense. Amongst these, the ways and means of working – including board meetings - have accelerated deeper into the digital age.

We also recognise the huge loss of lives, the grief of so many, the loneliness and the financial impacts.

As we look at the short-to-medium term horizon, IoD members have told us in our latest quarterly Director Sentiment Monitor (see below) that the pace of the national vaccination programme will be critical not only for public health generally but in terms of risk to their organisations. The rapid development and availability of the new vaccines is most welcome. It is to be hoped that the rollout will proceed as swiftly as practicable.

IoD Ireland will continue to strive to offer insightful webinars for members. Our 4th March offering is appropriate for these challenging times as Gary Joyce of Genesis takes us through 'Rethinking Strategic Planning in the Midst of Disruption' (see below). Our 2021 series of engaging networking events and workshops also continues. In regard to the latter, we are delighted to present 'Effective Shareholder Engagement' on 9th March (see below) and we hope you will join us for this, our second online workshop, of the year. A reminder, too, that below you will see links to webcast recordings of our recent webinars, which are available to view 24/7.

Stay safe and well.

IoD Workshop: Effective Shareholder Engagement
9th March 2021
We are delighted to continue our 2021 workshop programme. The next in our series is on Tuesday, 9th March, entitled 'Effective Shareholder Engagement' with Lorraine Rees, FCA, Director, IR-connect. The online workshop will cover key elements such as:

  • The role of investor relations (IR) in listed, private equity owned, and limited companies
  • Developing a proactive investor engagement plan
  • Debt investors
  • IR and crisis management.

Participants will gain a clear understanding of the benefits of a proactive approach to investor relations; increased knowledge of how to build an effective shareholder engagement programme; and, increased awareness of the needs and expectations of different stakeholders including institutional investors, private equity, and debt investors.

Date: Tuesday, 9th March 2021
Presenter: Lorraine Rees, FCA, Director, IR-connect
Time: 09:30 - 12:30
Webinar: This workshop will take place online, and will be interactive.
Cost: IoD members - €175 ex VAT; Non-members - €225 ex VAT

Further additions to our 2021 workshop programme will be announced in the coming weeks.
Director Factsheet: Improving the Effectiveness of the Nomination Committee
McCann FitzGerald Factsheet
March 2021

One of the directors’ crucial functions is to decide on new appointments to the board, sometimes to other senior positions in the company and, more broadly, to link succession planning to the company’s strategic objectives.

In many cases this is done within a committee of the board composed of executive and non-executive directors (the latter being the majority on the committee). Typically, the selection process of directors is carried out by the nomination committee, which then makes recommendations to the full board.

Our sincere thanks to McCann FitzGerald for their ongoing assistance in producing the IoD Factsheets.

Please note: To read this members’ only content, you must be logged into the members' area of our website.  For more Director Factsheets, please visit our website.
IoD Briefings Webinar: Rethinking Strategic Planning in the Midst of Disruption - 4th March 2021
As part of our ongoing work to share exclusive content and insights with members, we are delighted to invite you to join our upcoming webinar entitled, 'Rethinking Strategic Planning in the Midst of Disruption' with Gary Joyce, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Genesis.

Date: Thursday, 4th March 2021
Presenter: Gary Joyce, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Genesis
Time: 09:30 - 10:30
Cost: Free of charge to IoD Ireland members. 
Registration: Closes at 5.00pm Wednesday, 3rd March 2021.

This webinar is part of our Briefing Series, and is sponsored by Accenture.

For more information, and to book your place, click the below 'Book Now' button.
The IoD Blog: Can the Live Music Industry Recover from the Devastation of Lockdown?
In this blog, Niall Stokes, founder and editor of Hot Press magazine and author of best-selling books on U2 and Philip Lynott (Thin Lizzy), offers key insights into the state of the music industry and, also, the impact on his own publishing company, since the pandemic arrived in Ireland one year ago.

'There is no point in trying to sugar-coat it: the Irish music and entertainment industry has been utterly devastated by the impact of Covid-19,' he writes. 

Previous blogs are also available on our website. If you are interested in contributing to our blog or for further information, please contact Paul O'Mahony at or call 01 411 0010. 
IoD Webcast: Economic Update 2021
We are delighted to share with members a recording of our webinar entitled, 'Economic Update 2021' with Jim Power, Economist and Media Commentator, which was delivered exclusively to IoD members on 25th February 2021.
In the session, Jim discussed the following key elements: Brexit – where are we now?; COVID-19 update on the economics of the pandemic and the way ahead; the domestic economy – how much of a rebound can we expect; Irish policy challenges.
This webinar is part of our Briefing Series, and is sponsored by Accenture.

Please note: To view this members’ only content, you must be logged into the members' area of our website.  For more webcasts, please visit our website.
Edelman Trust Barometer 2021: Edelman Webinar in Partnership with IoD Ireland  - 9th March 2021
Edelman, in partnership with IoD Ireland, invites IoD Ireland members to attend the online launch of the Edelman Trust Barometer 2021, on Tuesday, 9th March 2021. Edelman’s Trust Barometer is the most robust global examination of trust, surveying more than 34,000 respondents in 28 countries. Joe Carmody, Managing Director of Edelman, will present the findings of the Barometer and host a panel discussion with Lord Jim O’Neill, Andrea Catherwood, an award winning news broadcaster and journalist, and Paul Reid, Chief Executive, HSE.

Date: Tuesday, 9th March 2021
Time: 08:30 - 09:30
Partner: This is an Edelman webinar in partnership with IoD Ireland.
Registration: Please register via the 'Book Now' button by Wednesday, 3rd March. 

For more information, and to book your place, click the below 'Book Now' button. 
Meet a Member
Matt Robinson is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries in Ireland and an experienced non-executive director and former CFO and CEO of Aviva Life. He is currently an independent non-executive director at Zurich Life and Pensions.

An experienced director in the Financial Services industry, having held a number of senior executive and non-executive director positions over the past 20 years, Matt has particular expertise in strategy, finance and actuarial. Much of Matt’s recent experience has been in the identification and delivery of large transactions, such as disposals, acquisitions and portfolio transfers.

What is the most important lesson, from your personal or business life, that has guided you the most in being a business leader? 
To treat people as individuals and to take the time to listen and truly get to know people and what inspires or motivates them. When there is pressure to deliver it is always a temptation to take more on yourself, but ultimately over the long-term far more can be achieved by investing time in building and developing a high performing team.

What do you particularly value from your IoD membership? 
In a post-COVID environment, the IoD has adapted extremely well to be able to offer so much online. I value having this privileged access to so many interesting and successful individuals talking on a range of current topics. It’s invaluable to hear these varied and diverse perspectives.
Breakthrough Speed for Breakout Value: How CFOs Can Shift Focus and Drive Change
According to global research by Accenture, nearly 8 in 10 Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) say that organisational disruptions from the pandemic have accelerated a transformation of their roles.

The CFO’s role has moved beyond ‘economic guardians’ of the enterprise to ‘architects of business value’ and ‘catalysts of digital strategies’, with nearly three-quarters reporting that they have final say on the appropriate technology direction of the enterprise. The pace of change has outstripped their expectations, with 60% of Finance now digitised (compared to their predictions 3 years ago of 45% by 2021).

Other challenges including digitalisation, market dynamics and evolving consumer expectations, are also impacting the CFO. They are being asked to ensure that their company appropriately mitigates risk by addressing environmental, social and governance performance – with over two thirds believing they are fully accountable for ESG reporting. Join the conversation about this research here: #CFONow.
Report Launch: Director Sentiment Monitor for Q4 2020
We are pleased to publish the results of our Director Sentiment Monitor for Q4 2020, which was conducted exclusively amongst IoD Ireland members between 18th January and 4th February 2021.

This latest IoD research has found that a slow rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme is seen by a third (33%) of business leaders as the single biggest risk facing their organisations. It has also found that 78% of our survey respondents say they had a business continuity plan in place before COVID-19. Furthermore, 91% reveal their business model has changed, either significantly or marginally, since the arrival of the novel coronavirus.

The survey addresses a number of other key areas/issues, including business confidence, financial performance, governance, gender pay gap legislation, COVID-19, Brexit, and international trade. 

Thank you to all who took part in the survey.
Deliver Results for Your Board: IoD Ireland Board Evaluation Service
Avail of the IoD Ireland Board Evaluation Service to learn how effectively your board is executing its roles and responsibilities.

Through the lens of best practice governance standards and your organisation’s business context, IoD Ireland's experienced Board Assessors examine how effectively your board and board committees are operating.
The service is efficientrobust, and completely confidential. It has an average completion term of just six weeks. Furthermore, the entire process can be undertaken virtually.

Our team of Board Assessors include Chartered Directors and/or governance specialists - Dr Margaret Cullen, Carol Bolger CDir, Marie Collins CDir and Clare Duignan. Our Assessors have worked across sectors as diverse as telecoms, financial services, hospitality, property, healthcare, communications, construction, energy, and education.
IoD Webcast: Governance and Risk in a Time of Uncertainty and Change
We are delighted to share with members a recording of our webinar entitled, 'Governance and Risk in a Time of Uncertainty and Change'  with Ed Sibley, Deputy Governor, Prudential Regulation, Central Bank of Ireland, which was delivered exclusively to IoD members on 17th February 2021.
In his webinar, Ed outlined some of the Central Bank’s regulatory priorities in 2021 and also focused on governance and risk management, as well as the challenges boards and executives need to rise to today and in the future.
This webinar is part of our Lunch Bites @ the IoD Series, and is sponsored by IQ-EQ. 

Please note: To view this members’ only content, you must be logged into the members' area of our website.  For more webcasts, please visit our website.
On the Bright Side…
Positive News in Business
While there may be many negative business stories in the news recently, there are also plenty of positive ones. Here are just a few stories we have selected:

Policy and Announcements Hub
Local Enterprise Week Goes Virtual
Local Enterprise Week, the country’s flagship entrepreneurial event, is running from Monday, 1st March, to Friday, 5th March, under the theme of ‘Making It Happen’. The entire programme of events - including over 200 seminars, workshops and master classes - will be online.

Enterprise Ireland's Export Compass Webinar Series
Enterprise Ireland has been running a series of five webinars aimed at helping Irish businesses to grow through export. The remaining two webinars include: ‘How to finance your export plan. Finance management through funding and pricing’, on 11th March; and ‘Bringing it all together’, followed by a Q&A session, on 25th March.

Brexit Business Supports
The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment provides a range of supports to help businesses of all sizes navigate Brexit changes.

Access2Markets Online Portal
Mindful of the challenges that COVID-19 and Brexit continue to pose for Irish companies, Minister for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation, Robert Troy TD, has reminded businesses of the Access2Markets online portal Access2Markets Welcome home page ( to assist small and medium businesses grow their trade beyond the EU’s borders.
IoD and Members in the News Business leaders concerned at pace of Covid-19 vaccine rollout - IoD
RTE Morning Ireland: Slow Vaccine Rollout a Risk - IoD Survey (broadcast link no longer active)
The Irish Times: Slow vaccination rollout seen as biggest threat to Irish business
Irish Examiner: Slow vaccine rollout a major concern for Irish businesses
Newstalk: Slow Vaccine Rollout a Risk - IoD Finding (broadcast link no longer active)
Q102 FM: Vaccine Programme a Risk to Business (broadcast link no longer active) A Third of Business Leaders See Slow Vaccine Rollout As Single Biggest Risk
Irish Times Business Newsletter: Slow Vaccination Rollout Biggest Threat to Irish Business (not available) Business leaders: Slow vaccine roll-out a risk to recovery
MidWest radio: Vaccine Programme a Risk to Business (broadcast link no longer active) Appointments to the Voluntary Health Insurance Board (Karen Furlong) 78% of Businesses Had Continuity Plan Prior to Pandemic – IoD Pandemic Forced Most Firms to Change Business Model, IoD Survey Reveals Business Continuity: Can Your Business Handle a Future Crisis?
The Echo (Cork): Sibley to Address loD Lunch Bites
Irish Independent: Sibley tells directors response to environmental risks has been “woefully inadequate” Central Bank to seek proof of climate action from financial firms Reappointments to the Health Products Regulatory Authority (David Holohan) Biggest Threat to Business: Vaccine Rollout IoD Survey Finding on Vaccine Rollout Mentioned in Seanad Eireann
Irish Examiner: Business Movers: Board of HaloCare (Dr Rhona Mahony) Board Appointment: Uilleann Piping Body (Tomás Mac Thréinfhir)
Tallaght/Clondalkin News: Striking a Balance Will Be Key to Remote Working Plan – IoD (print edition only)
IoD Member Benefits
Exclusive Access to the IoD Ireland Legal Panel
IoD Ireland members can avail of a free consultation from the IoD expert Legal Panel.
What is the IoD Ireland Member Benefit?
The Institute of Directors’ Legal Panel comprises solicitors prepared to give relevant advice to IoD members on a non-fee basis, provided such a query can be answered speedily.
Benefit Availability 
This offer is available to members only. 
COVID-19: Information and Resources
COVID-19 Resilience and Recovery 2021 - The Path Ahead
On 23rd February 2021, the Government published 'COVID-19 Resilience and Recovery 2021 - The Path Ahead', which extends its existing public health restrictions until 5th April 2021, when a further review will be conducted. It sees a phased return of school education and a scaling-up of the national vaccination programme.
Get the Most Out of Your Membership
with the New IoD Ireland Website
Have you reset your password and accessed the new members' area on the IoD Ireland website? If so, you will have already gained access to our exclusive member only content, such as webcasts, Director Factsheets, blogs and much more. 

If you have not yet created your new login details, please follow the below steps to get the most out of your IoD Ireland membership:

Step one: browse to this IoD Ireland website page and on the left hand side of the screen in the 'Returning Members' section please press the 'Password Reset' button. Please then enter your email address to reset your password.

Step two: you will receive a ‘Password Set Request’ email. Please click on the link in this email to create your password and login to access the exclusive members’ area of the IoD Ireland website. (If you do not receive this email, please check your spam/junk email.) 

If you have any queries or issues regarding the above, please contact the IoD Comms team.
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