Behind Closed Doors

‘The Boardroom: How to get in, get on and make a difference’

From his 30 years of serving on boards, Simon Laffin provides a guide on how to get appointed to a board, and what to do, and what to look out for, when you. He covers a wide range of board issues from what financial numbers to look out for, the understanding risk and cash-flow, decision-making, mergers and acquisitions, how to work with colleagues, even to how to handle sexual misdemeanours in the boardroom. He also tackles controversial subjects, such as diversity and excess regulation. The book is full of tips and techniques to help even experienced directors make a difference. Simon argues that what boards need is education and encouragement, to get a better understanding of board issues. He explains that boards do not need more invasive regulation. He wants to open the doors to the boardroom so that insiders understand better what is happening and what they need to do, and outsiders get a clearer view of what happens inside the boardroom.

New Course Now Available

Read the book do the course

New course now available

Read the book, do the course!”

Notes From A Non-Executive

Topics covered range from what to look at when you are thinking of joining a board, to handling difficult issues that arise, to what to expect if your company gets bid for.

Risks & The Boardroom

This is a plea for boards to take corporate risk registers seriously and suggests ways to enable boards to think about risks in a constructive way.

Corporate Governance

A blog on recent corporate governance changes, lesson that can be learned from failures such as Carillion and Northern Rock, and issues around the audit industry.


Articles looking at various aspects of economics

Recent Blogs

What if you get an unsolicited approach for the company?

What if you get an unsolicited approach for the company?

I was having a good day, sitting in my office sorting a few things out. Then, late afternoon, the phone rang. It was the Chairman of one of our competitors. I hadn’t spoken to him before, but this was no comfort, as he revealed that they were about to make an offer...

What are pre-emption rights and why do they matter?

What are pre-emption rights and why do they matter?

The board is contemplating an equity raise. The brokers and CFO talk in respectful terms about preserving pre-emption rights and what this means for how they raise the new capital. Maybe you, as a new non-exec, are sitting there wondering what is this all about and...

What’s all the fuss about cash?

What’s all the fuss about cash?

Companies differ very much in their attitude to the importance of cash. If a business is private equity owned, highly geared (ie has a lot of debt) or has not a lot of headroom against its overdraft or debt covenants, it is likely to be very focussed on cash. Others,...