Get to Board: Onboarding

Onboarding is a very difficult task because one is made legally liable for a part-time engagement with the company. So, a good understanding of how the company functions and what are the legal nuances of compliance need to be taken special care of.

Apart from secretarial induction which is more regulatory requirement driven an ideal induction must cover all the stakeholders as under-.

  1. Shareholders– Get a good hang of the ownership and various shareholders’ constituents. To what extent the promoters or institutional investors can arm-twist the board in general? Try to meet some of the key members in person to understand shareholders’ perspectives. Discuss analyst/proxy advisor reports with CFO and CEO.
  2. Employees – A good onboarding induction program would include meeting the executive board members or key management people of at least the top layer including the HODs. This would also include a visit to the plant and meeting senior employees of various departments.
  3. Customers– Good companies ensure that independent directors get to meet some of the key customers to gauge the customers’ level of comfort and loyalty towards the brand and the company. You will get a good hang of the supply chain as well from here.
  4. Suppliers – It’s important that a company doesn’t exploit the suppliers and they get paid on time. There are three key supplier categories for any company – suppliers of goods, suppliers of services, and suppliers of capital i.e., NBFCs or banks. You get an insight into related party transactions also here.
  5. Social stakeholders – In such an induction one gets to know about the CSR activities of the company. And in case any internal foundation exists within the company one gets to meet the board members of the foundation. The idea is to understand whether the CSR funds are well spent.
  6. Environmental – All companies today have some issues related to the environmental impact of their business. This is an important area to meet the constituents of environment management and regulatory bodies. This also covers the ESG quotient of the company.

An independent director must meet all six stakeholders and get a feeling that all the stakeholders are satisfied, or else a company cannot run smoothly.

Note: Get support from Board Stewardship Inc. before going for your onboarding. We provide complete dos’ and don’ts by our company secretary with red flags to check out. Email us with your phone number for a call back on



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