How to write a Non-Executive Director CV

February 5, 2014

A Non-Executive Director CV is different from an Executive CV

non-executive director cvThe skill-set required to be a successful Non-Executive Director is different from an Executive Director’s skill-set so it makes sense that your Non-Executive Director CV should be different from one you would use to obtain an Executive position.

A summary of the skills needed to become an effective Non-Executive Director can be found here. Your NED CV will need to demonstrate that you have these skills by drawing examples from your current and previous executive and non-executive roles.

Because of this need to provide more evidence about how you match up to the NED skills criteria there is some acceptance that the usual requirement for a strict 2 page CV can be relaxed and that a NED CV can be between 2 and 4 pages long. This is not universally accepted though and some recruiters will still demand a full chronological executive type CV with a 2-page limit.

Your NED CV should contain the following:

  1. Your contact details on the 1st page with your address, email and phone numbers. It is a good idea to have your e-mail and telephone number in the header or footer of the CV continuation pages.
    You should have a LinkedIn profile and provide the address with your other contact details. It is important to make sure that your LinkedIn profile and your CV are consistent with each other – there should be nothing in your CV that is not in your profile and visa versa. The level of detail does not have to be the same though and your CV should be the more concise of the two.
  2. A candidate profile, summarising the key skills, or useful experience you have to offer to a Board as a Non-Executive Director or Chair. This should be less than 6 points and not more than 8 and should highlight areas of your experience which demonstrate that you have the required skills.
    Recruiters will be looking for a mixture of NED boardroom skills such as ‘Strategic Evaluation’ or ‘Risk Management’ and some personal areas of expertise that a particular organisation may require for its Board such as ‘expertise in digital marketing’, ‘strong IT product development track-record’, ’10 years’ experience of luxury goods sector’, ‘Finance Director experienced in VC/EIS fundraising’, ‘NED with IPO and AIM-listed company experience’, ‘Experience of Chairing PE backed companies’.
    The candidate profile is probably the most likely part of your CV that you will want to tailor when applying for a particular role.
  3. Your current and previous Board-level experience as an actual Chair, or Executive or Non-Executive Director. You can also include here any experience you may have had acting as a board-level consultant, Company Secretary, Trustee or Governor.
    In particular, you should mention any formal Board subcommittees, such as Audit, Finance, Remuneration, Nominations or Governance that you have either Chaired or were a member of.
    If your role was not as a Companies House registered director you will need to explain the nature of the Board and how the experience you gained in the role is relevant to being a Non-Executive Director.
    You should also mention here any qualifications you may have such as Chartered Director from the Institute of Directors or the Financial Times NED diploma. If you have attended a course or workshop such as the Excellencia How to become a Non-Executive Director course. to prepare yourself for the role that is also worth mentioning.
  4. A complete and accurate career record with dates and a description of your major achievements and responsibilities in your more important roles. Minor/brief/early roles can simply be mentioned without descriptions. Career breaks are not a problem so do not try to hide them. The career record should not only say what you have done but also back up the skills and expertise you claimed in the first section. Again make sure everything is truthful and accurate.
  5. A summary of your relevant professional, educational and technical qualifications, especially any that would be relevant for a particular Board appointment or Board subcommittee – such as an accounting qualification for an Audit Committee.


You will often be asked to provide a CV in word format, if you are given the opportunity to provide one as a pdf, then take it as it ensures that your CV will be formatted and print out exactly as you intend it to be


What skills do Non-Executive Directors need?

February 5, 2014

Use this check-list to see if you have the skills Non-Executive Directors need to be effective

non-executive directorsRegardless of any specialist expertise, Non-Executive Directors must be independent, have integrity and the respect of the other board members, be prepared and able to look at the business from a ‘big picture’ perspective, be well-informed and manage difficult decisions in a facilitative manner. The chemistry with other board members is vital. It is the Chairman’s responsibility to ensure that the Board functions as a team, with the NEDs functioning as a cohesive unit within the Board team.

NEDs should act in a mature and professional manner and be prepared to make a stand if they do not agree with the way the organisation is being run. Increasingly NEDs are obtaining professional qualifications such as the Institute of Directors’ Chartered Director qualification to demonstrate that they have the understanding and experience to undertake their non-executive duties in a thoroughly professional manner.

Examples of how you demonstrate the following skills are commonly asked for when applying for Non-Executive Director positions:

  • Integrity – high ethical standards
  • Sound judgement – willingness to challenge
  • Interpersonal skills – listening, persuasiveness, ability to communicate ideas, sensitivity, openness and awareness of non-verbal communication, co-operation and team-working, facilitation skills
  • Leadership and self-awareness, ability to gain respect and attention, confidence
  • Critical thinking, creativity and strategic awareness – the ability to take the wider, strategic view
  • Business acumen, ability to identify new business opportunities, embrace change and innovation
  • Ability to assimilate, assess and analyse information, especially financial information
  • Political astuteness, diplomatic, able to deal with conflict
  • Determination, with the tenacity and drive to succeed
  • Keenness to gain new knowledge and skills to develop competences further

10 million interested in joining the board of a charity, but confusion remains about the role of a trustee

November 8, 2011

NOVEMBER 7, 2011

  • 21% of British adults (10 million[1]) would like to sit on the board of a charity
  • Confusion about trusteeship remains: 51% of people don’t know what a charity trustee is
  • Young person’s game: 18-34’s are more interested in joining the board of a charity (28%) than retirees (15%)

Getting On Board, the charity that promotes board-level volunteering, reveals today that confusion remains about the role of the trustee, despite the high numbers interested in joining the board of a charity. Although 10.2 million people (21%)[1] confirmed they would like to sit on the board of a charity, significantly less (12%) stated interest in becoming a charity trustee – a role with very little fundamental difference. This figure suggests that British people remain unaware of the exact role of the trustee and is confirmed by 51% admitting that they don’t know what a charity trustee is.

The research also found that almost twice the number of 18-34 year olds are interested in joining the board of a charity (28%) as over 55 year olds (15%). This fact directly contradicts any outdated views of trustees as older retired professionals, and this high level of interest will encourage charities to actively recruit younger trustees to their boards.

London emerged from the research as the most charitably inclined location, with three in ten Londoners (29%) interested in joining the board of a charity. Although interest was reflected through the country, the South East and East Midlands saw the lowest level of interest in trusteeship at 16%.

This study was commissioned to mark Trustees Week (31st October – 6th November), the national campaign dedicated to raising awareness of trusteeship. Whilst there are around 800,000 trustees in England and Wales, Charity Commission estimates suggest that almost half of charities have a vacancy on their trustee board.

Sarah Hodgkinson, Chief Executive of Getting on Board, commented on the research: “It’s clear that there is a huge amount of interest in trusteeship – but confusion still remains. Our study shows that over half of the public don’t know what a trustee is – but two in ten would be interested in joining a board. Charities need to work together to ensure that the wider public have a better understanding of what a trustee is, to help take advantage of the broad range of valuable skills available in the private, public and voluntary sectors.”

Dame Suzi Leather, Chair of the Charity Commission, said: “Clearly the charity sector needs to do more to explain what a charity trustee is so that people realise what a fantastic opportunity it can be to make a real difference. Trustees are the driving force behind every great charity and are responsible for making decisions about a charity’s direction and activity. I have met so many trustees who tell me it’s the best thing that they have ever done and would recommend it to others.

“But as well as making a huge contribution to society, trusteeship can bring real benefits the individual. By being on a charity board trustees learn new skills, many of which can help them in other areas of their life. I would particularly encourage charities to consider recruiting as widely as possible for new trustees and to consider young adults in particular – they can add a new perspective to the charity’s work as the donors and volunteers of the future.”

What is a trustee? Trustees and their responsibilities (from the Charity Commission)
Charity trustees are the people who serve on the governing body of a charity. They may be known as trustees, directors, board members, governors or committee members. The principles and main duties are the same in all cases.

(1) Trustees have and must accept ultimate responsibility for directing the affairs of a charity, and ensuring that it is solvent, well-run, and delivering the charitable outcomes for the benefit of the public for which it has been set up.

*2,012 nationally weighted online Interviews were carried out by Opinium Research online from 28th to 31st October 2011. Respondents were asked: ‘Would you be interested in becoming a charity trustee?’ and ‘Would you be interested in joining the board of a charity close to your heart?’

1. 10,22,1960 million calculated as 21% of 48676000 (According to ONS 2009 UK population statistics, there are 48676000 adults in the United Kingdom)

Becoming a Non Executive Director

November 8, 2011

Panel Discussion

Free Seminar

Wednesday 16 November 2011 4.30pm – 6.00pm

Followed by an opportunity for networking until 8.00pm

Radisson Blu Hotel, Broad Quay, Bristol, BS1 4DA

Chair:    David Doughty – Chartered Director, Chief Executive, Chair, Non-Executive Director, Entrepreneur and Business Mentor


                          Nigel Carter – COO & CFO FTSE 100 Banking Groups

                          Anthony Waller – Director, Waller and Associates Ltd

                          Kevin Jauncey – Director Digiweb and Milamber Group


Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) are no longer the preserve of large organisations, with more organisations than ever choosing to flexibly adopt new talent to the board.  The panel will be discussing this new environment by addressing the following topics:

What is it that enables one organisation’s board to deliver its leadership role more effectively than another?

Where leadership truly begins to emerge, there is often a team of people forming a board that have the appropriate mix of knowledge, skill and insight to take the organisation forward. NEDs form a crucial part of that team; exercising impartial & independent judgement.

Additionally, corporate governance is now a high priority for all types of organisation, whether operating in the private, public or third sectors.  The consequences of failure are grave but the rewards for success are high.

Who should attend? This event will focus on routes to becoming a Non-Executive Director, the relationships between Executive and Non-Executive Directors and the benefits to the firm of a strong and balanced Board of Directors. Our speakers will highlight their board experiences, how they have developed a portfolio of non-executive director positions and the impact they make. The discussion will thus be of interest to aspiring NEDs, organisations seeking to appoint NEDs and existing NEDs

This free seminar is organised by Executives Online in conjunction with the Institute of Directors, the University of Exeter Business School who run the IoD Director Development programme in the Region and Executive Transitions


Networking opportunity with delegates & IoD members

4:30pm Registration, drinks and snacks
5:00pm Welcome & Introductions
5:15pm Panel Discussion


David’s current roles include Chair at the Centre for Sustainable Healthcare and the Thames Valley Health Innovation and Education Cluster, together with NED roles at Zynap Hosting, Safe Pair of Hands Ltd and Management Systems Solutions Ltd


Nigel is a Chartered Director with a career in financial services and with particular experience in wealth management, private banking, asset management and life assurance. Past roles have included Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Business Development Director.

Anthony is a specialist in corporate governance and has recently published a ground breaking report into the relationship between governance and company performance. Through Waller and Associates Ltd, he delivers board performance evaluations and helps SME’s develop and implement growth strategies.

Kevin is a senior executive having worked at board level in the Telecoms and IT/ Software market in both PLC and private companies for the last 10 years. A proven track record of growing business, good communication and building strong dynamic teams. He is experienced in raising capital in both the private and public sectors, and delivering strategies based on M&A activity. He has a deep understanding of the Global Communication market, and has developed a strong network of IT and Communication professionals and executives.

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