Serving stakeholders

Banks occupy a central position in society and the economy. People have passionate opinions about them – some arguably misguided, some appropriately challenging. I hope to do three things here that might enhance public debate. Serving Stakeholders from Harrison Young First, I want to offer a conceptual model and some vocabulary – tools I find useful[…]

Why it’s critical to care about board culture

A lot of what we believe about management comes from the military. Organization charts display hierarchy. Boards have authority and ultimate responsibility but they cannot accomplish their mission by issuing orders. In creating boards, and judging boards, we are interested in soft issues as well as hard. We care about culture. I want to share[…]

Your job, my job, our job – the balance between Boards and management in governance

One of the principles of traditional governance is that a board oversees rather than manages. Both activities involve inspecting. While it is normally the boss who inspects, it is worth noting that both parties have the same objective: getting it right. Inspector and inspected are on the same team. As such boards participate in decision-making because as[…]

Governance – taming the beast

If you take an interest in the conduct and regulation of banks, you encounter the word, “governance,” almost immediately. The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (“APRA”) has a standard with that title.1 The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (“BCBS”) has issued a series of documents on “corporate governance for banks.” The newest version (the “2014 Guidelines”)2[…]

Lessons from a career in banking

When I got an appointment as an executive-in-residence and fellow at the University of Melbourne, I consulted an old friend who’s had an academic career. I wanted to know what to expect? “They’ll probably ask you to give a little talk about your work,” he told me. He meant my research focus. I interpreted “my[…]

Thinking about banking

Some years ago, I was introduced to a well-known writer at a party in Melbourne. “Harrison’s a banker,” my host said helpfully. “Gee,” responded the writer without missing a beat, “I’ve never met anyone in organized crime before.” I spent half a second searching for a clever response. But the Global Financial Crisis was raging,[…]