Governance To Prosper: The Importance Of Integrity, Values, And Policy


This lecture is in three parts:

  1. Understanding governance. James de Sausmarez will explain how good governance encourages Trust and Trust underpinned by integrity is at the heart of doing business. “My word is my bond” to Brand and the importance of governance to keeping that implicit promise. Values underpinned the earliest governance frameworks. Technology and regulation has transformed the way the world does business. Good governance frameworks embrace Company values and have integrity, which generates Trust leading to business growth and therefore prosperity. 
  2. Are Governance frameworks good enough? With an increasing pace of change, greater shocks, discontinuities, and fewer opportunities to base decisions on precedents, governance needs to be underpinned by the values of the organisation and how these are put into practice. The findings from original research commissioned by WCCSA will be featured. David Lock will summarise the research and indicative results.
  3. What should governance professionals and boards of directors do? Sharon Constancon will explain that the UK Corporate Governance Code, and its support document, Guidance on Board Effectiveness and frameworks for best practice for governance and leadership, set out a route to good governance frameworks but are not in themselves enough. Organisation wide values need to be articulated by boards who, led by the Chair, ensure they are embedded in business practice and decision making throughout the organisation so the policies, processes and procedures of governance and governance respect doing the right thing first time. Governance frameworks are not strait-jackets but should encourage an entrepreneurial attitude with no rubber stamps, no automatic refusal to consider new ideas and no avoidance of decisions. To deliver growth and prosperity, Boards must always consider what is in the best long-term sustainable success interest of the business whereby it can then benefit all shareholders, stakeholders and contribute meaningfully to the community, environment and wider society in which they operate.


David Lock is Secretary General of the Magna Charta Observatory based at the University of Bologna. This global network of approaching 1,000 universities is concerned with promoting and protecting the fundamental values of autonomy and academic freedom and universities’ responsibility to society.  David was previously Director of International Projects at the UK’s Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, the founding Registrar and Acting Chief Executive of the British University in Dubai and head of the administration of two British universities. He also chairs Gulf Education Conferences.  

James de Sausmarez trained as a Company Secretary at the Central Electricity Generating Board.
James has spent most of his career in the investment management industry specialising in listed investment companies and heading the investment trust businesses of both Touche Remnant and Janus Henderson. As a director of Janus Henderson, he sat on the board of the firm's principal regulated operating subsidiary. He retired from Janus Henderson on 30 June 2022 and is now seeking non-executive positions to complement his voluntary activities. From 2015-22 James was a Common Councillor of the City of London Corporation. He is Chair of Governors of a girls’ independent school, on the board of two charities, a former member of the Council of St Paul's Cathedral where he is still an independent member of their Finance Committee.

Sharon Constancon is a Fellow of the Chartered Governance Institute, Chartered Director and MBA.  She is Chair of the South African Chamber of Commerce UK, Chair of the Council of Foreign Chambers of Commerce. International Committee Member for the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment and CEO of Valufin, a forex advisory firm.  Sharon has also held a number of non-executive director roles including acting as Chair of the Conduct and Culture Committee for Buckinghamshire Building Society.  Sharon was awarded the SACC Businesswoman of the Year in 2013 and in 2015 was a finalist for the prestigious IoD Neville Bain Memorial Award.