Corporate Governance

/Corporate Governance

So, what is your Distrans?

Years ago, a well-respected and rich entrepreneur showed me around his new factory. In a back room a dozen people were analyzing customer requirements, doing complex calculations, and writing contracts. “Do you see these engineers?” the company owner giggled. “They write more in one day than I have written in my whole life! They are more interested in their paperwork than in what we are making in this company.” I have had similar experiences in other companies: a large furniture enterprise, a meat-processing company, an industrial bakery chain …. The owners all wanted me to first know and understand their [...]

2018-04-15T09:20:56+00:000 Comments

Who can be your Data Protection Superman/Superwoman ?

In the past weeks several communications via different media, blogs, … were addressing the need of thousands of Data Protection Officers (DPOs) across Europe for the coming year to ensure organizations' compliance to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a quest like none before ... At the same time the debate went on discussing the qualifications this person would need to show. The discussions between those that approach this question from a legal point of view (where the quest is originating) and those that see the resolution coming from within the technical departments of the organization (where part of the [...]

2017-01-07T10:45:17+00:000 Comments


I had an interesting conversation with a friend recently. On the face of it, it was about conflicts of interest but in reality it was about the unnecessary fear of wrong doing. My friend explained that his wife Jennifer worked for a multinational that regularly employed freelance IT contractors. My friend is a partner in a small IT company and is always looking to build business with new clients. He asked Jennifer if she knew how he could approach her company with the idea of developing business with them.  He was a little surprised when she told him that should [...]

2016-11-17T08:23:34+00:000 Comments

Meeting minutes, do we still need them?

It’s kind of old fashioned, having a meeting agenda, following it and then taking the minutes. “No one reads them anyway” is a call for abolition I hear regularly.  All I know is that it is often useful to be able to look back and to trace decisions and to remind oneself, not necessarily who said what and when but more what were the agreements and the specific actions that arose from them. I write this because so many aspects of our business lives are changing that it is easy to let slip the basic things that just maybe are [...]

2016-11-17T08:23:38+00:000 Comments

Nothing personal, it’s just business

Luckily, there has only been a few times in my life when ruthless business people have got the better of me and I ended up signing deals that were not really in my best interests. And when I look back, I realize that there was a common link to each occasion – I was in a weak negotiating position and they knew it and took advantage.  And here’s the dilemma, some say that this is ‘just business’ and that this is how capitalism works, but is it? The fact that I have been in business now for more than thirty [...]

2016-11-17T08:23:54+00:000 Comments