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Applications open for Mentoring for Diversity programme


27 August 2012

Media Release

Applications open for Mentoring for Diversity programme

Applications opened today for the second year of the Institute of Directors’ (IoD) Mentoring for Diversity programme.

The programme which aims to boost the number of women on NZX-listed and large company boards in New Zealand pairs a highly experienced senior director or chairman with a “board ready” woman who wants to further her governance career. The programme provides excellent learning and networking experiences which are invaluable for the professional development of the mentees chosen.

IoD Chief Executive, Ralph Chivers said “We are delighted to open applications for the second intake of our Mentoring for Diversity programme. The way the programme has developed during its first year is very encouraging, along with very positive feedback from both the mentees and mentors, the programme has already started to deliver results with several mentees obtaining board positions with significant organisations.”

“Research is clear that diversity improves the quality of decision making and financial performance. The IoD are keen to see an improvement in the number of women serving on boards in New Zealand which is why we are committed to the Mentoring for Diversity programme. While the programme at the moment is focused on women, it is important to realise that diversity on boards is about more than gender, it’s about diversity of thought. Gender is a starting point for us.”

“The IoD strongly believes there are capable women ready and able to serve on boards of all levels. It’s not about just having women on boards to balance the statistics regardless of their skill - no one wants that. Women want to be there on merit, and boards want skilled people to diversify thinking and improve decision making. The Mentoring for Diversity programme is about developing connections, sharing skills and experiences that will help improve the candidacy and the visibility of the mentees for board positions. Feedback from our mentees shows that another benefit of the programme is the sense of validation a mentor can give. Having someone who is highly experienced in governance confirm that you have the skills and experience necessary for a large board appointment is a great boost.” Mr Chivers said.

Women who are interested in the programme should visit the IoD website (www.iod.org.nz) for further information about the programme, criteria and an application form.

Applications close at 5pm on Thursday 20 September.

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