Company Directors' Course

A fundamental week long course for directors and senior executives who have governance experience and have been in their roles for at least a year.

40 CPD points

If you’re serious about developing your director skills, seeing a step change in your performance at the board table or becoming a Chartered Member, the Company Directors’ Course is essential. You’ll explore director roles and responsibilities, participate in an in-depth board simulation brought to life through relevant case studies, and immediately improve your decision-making in the boardroom. This week long course is available as a 'live in' residential and non-residential option.

Course/workshop category: Fundamental course

Duration: Course commences Sunday at 3:00pm and concludes Friday at 3:30pm

Our renowned residential course format, running successfully for over 30 years, is a learning experience free from daily distractions. It offers the best opportunity to learn and network with high performing peers from across New Zealand, while engaging in informal discussions invaluable for your learning, helping to make truly lasting connections.

We also offer a non-residential course format for the Company Directors’ Course.

The course comes alive through discussion, debate, challenging conversations and case studies, with board simulation exercises highlighting the unpredictable nature of business and the human nature of directorship. This course is facilitated by directors who are willing to share their personal experiences and hard-earned wisdom.


Content covered

  • Best practice corporate governance
    • Corporate governance principles, rules, and protocols
    • Governance skills
  • Strategy in the boardroom
    • What is strategy and strategic thinking
    • The board and strategy development
    • Monitoring and reviewing implementation
    • Refreshing strategy and innovation
  • Finance and the board’s role
    • What are the financial statements and reports telling you at a very high level?
    • Interpreting the reports
    • Financial planning
    • Making investment appraisals
    • Understanding company valuations
  • Directors and the law
    • A director’s legal obligations, liabilities, and mitigating legal risks
    • Directors’ and officers’ insurance
  • Board dynamics and culture
    • Role of the board in developing culture, ethics and values
    • Corporate social responsibility
    • Board dynamics
    • Leadership and CEO succession
    • Board and CEO review
  • Risk governance
    • Key risk management concepts
    • Risk appetite

Who should attend?

To attend the CDC we recommend the following:

  • you are a director with at least 1 – 5 years experience as a director on a board, or working with a board – for example as a CEO, CFO or managing director
  • you have a sound knowledge and understanding of business finance.

Completing the CDC is a pre-requisite to becoming a Chartered Member of the IoD.

Hear what others say about the Company Directors' Course.


The prices vary depending on the location to reflect the different venue costs. The accommodation cost for this residential course is included in the price.

2019
Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch (incl GST)
Members: $7,880 Non-members: $10,240

Queenstown, Waiheke Island and Tauranga  (incl GST)
Members: $8,160 Non-members: $10,600

Not a member? Join online to receive the member rate.
Standard membership is $525 incl GST plus $150 (incl GST) joining fee.


Finance pre-requisite

The CDC requires a sound knowledge and understanding of business finance. In fairness to other delegates and to enhance your learning experience, we recommend that unless you have a financial qualification you take the finance skills assessment test and attend the Finance Essentials course prior to attending the CDC if you need to up-skill. 

Start test


Pre-course reading

You will be provided with pre-course reading. Please allow adequate time to review a set of board papers which you will receive approximately two weeks before your course start date.


If none of the residential course dates suit your schedule, you may be interested in checking the non-residential schedule to see if a more suitable time exists.


Certification requirements

You will be required to attend each session to gain certification. In order to receive the certificate in Company Direction the delegate must attend all course sessions and board meetings, attend all organised dinners and not miss more than an hour of any other activity. If a delegate breaches any of the above course certification prerequisites they will not be eligible for certification. Compassionate consideration will only be considered should it affect your study ability (illness, injury and bereavement) and will be granted at the discretion of the IoD.

If you feel you will not be able to meet these requirements, it may be worth considering attending a non-residential course which has slightly different completion requirements.


Course information

Everything you need to know about the Company Directors' Course - Residential.


“The course solidified the knowledge I had gained on the job and even filled a few gaps. If anyone is serious about being a professional director this course is a must do.” – testimonial from a CDC attendee


Adrenalin’s publisher Cathy Parker recently attended the Institute of Directors’ Company Directors’ Course, and one of her key take-outs was that the closing question of any board meeting should be: "Did we add value?”
Read article

Published in Management magazine, May 2018 issue - www.management.co.nz  

Our facilitators

Company Directors' Course facilitators include:

  • Zoe Attwood GAICD, MBA, MInstD

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    Zoe is a Professional Director who has been working in governance since 2000, successfully serving on the Boards of private and listed companies, government entities, research institutes and not-for-profit organisations. She has held governance positions in both New Zealand and Australia.  She has also been an active Member and Chair of several subcommittees including finance audit and risk, governance and science.  Zoe facilitates governance training for both the Institute of Directors (IoD) NZ and the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD). Zoe has had an international senior executive career across many industries, specializing in science and technology, innovation and commercialisation.  She has held global, leading roles with Owens Illinois, Dairy Australia Ltd, Bonlac Foods Ltd / Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd and Fletcher Challenge Forests. She has worked extensively across food and beverage industries around the world, including 34 years in agriculture/horticulture, 21 of those years in dairy. Zoe is currently a Director of SealStone NZ Ltd and a Committee Member of the IoD Bay of Plenty branch.

  • Lynda Carroll CMInstD

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    Lynda has over 17 year’s governance experience including as a chair and deputy chair. She has led remuneration and performance subcommittees and been a member of finance and audit, fundraising and sponsorship and future operating environment sub-committees. Lynda’s governance experience has been gained in the arts and culture, and wider public and not-for-profit sectors, including the Wellington Regional Orchestra and the New Zealand Institute of Management.  She is currently on the New Zealand Army Leadership Board, a board member for an incorporated society, and a lay member on the Social Workers Registration Board Complaints Assessment Committee. Lynda is a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors and an Associate Fellow of New Zealand Institute of Management (NZIM). Lynda has led her own consulting company for the past 20 years, working across New Zealand, Australia, the Pacific and the UK. Prior to this Lynda was the managing consultant of the New Zealand office of Development Dimensions International.

  • Alastair Hercus BA (Hons), LLB, CMInstD

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    Alastair is a partner with Buddle Findlay in Wellington and has practised corporate and public law for over 20 years, advising a variety of public and private sector clients on corporate governance and directors' duties. He has specific expertise in the health and primary sectors and is an expert on cooperative and mutual company structures. Alastair is currently deputy chair of Medical Assurance Society Ltd, a director of Medical Securities Limited and a member of the Advisory Board of Cancer Trials New Zealand. He also serves on the board of Buddle Findlay, and has chaired the Latin America New Zealand Business Council, and spent nine years as a diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

  • Juliet McKee QSO, CFInstD

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    Juliet is a Chartered Fellow of the IoD and has held over 20 board directorships in a wide range of sectors, with state-owned enterprises, private and publicly-listed companies and not-for-profit organisations. In 1991, she established her New Zealand-based consultancy firm, Broad Horizons Limited, which delivers corporate governance training, policy advice and strategic planning workshops to a wide variety of clients in New Zealand, the Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. Juliet was awarded the Queen’s Service Order and the Commonwealth Medal. She is an honorary fellow of the School of Government at Victoria University.

  • Mark Odlin CMInstD

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    Mark is a partner at Buddle Findlay.  He joined Buddle Findlay in 2002 and has been practising law since 1995.  Prior to working with Buddle Findlay, Mark worked as in-house counsel at T-Mobile UK.  He regularly advises boards and management on governance issues – including boards of listed companies, council controlled organisations, trusts and public issuers.  Mark is currently a director of Isight Properties Limited which operates the Christchurch Eye Surgery facility and Buddle Findlay's in-house IT services company, Lawtech Services Limited.

  • Hamish Stevens MCom, MBA, CA, CMInstD

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    Hamish is an Auckland based independent director and a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors. He is an experienced board chair and holds several board committee chair positions.  Hamish is currently chair of DTS Food Assurance Ltd, East Health Services Ltd, The Kennedy’s Ltd, and a director of Restaurant Brands Ltd, AsureQuality Ltd, Pharmaco Ltd, Counties Power Ltd, and Smart Environmental Ltd.  He is also the Independent Chair of the Waikato Regional Council Audit and Risk committee. Prior to his governance career, Hamish held senior executive positions within some of New Zealand’s largest companies, including Tip Top Ice Cream, Heinz Wattie’s, and DB Breweries. Hamish has an M.Com (Hons.) and MBA from the University of Auckland and is a member of Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand.

  • Richard Westlake MA, CFInstD

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    Richard began his international governance advisory business in 2001, with the purpose of building boards into leading teams. He has facilitated programmes for the IoD for more than 10 years and has more than 20 years’ experience as a director and board chair. He is based in Wellington and is currently chair of Careerforce Industry Training Organisation, as well as the first independent director of the Dairy Goat Co-operative (NZ) Limited and a director of RCBC Bank, one of the largest banks in the Philippines. Richard was a founding independent director of Kiwibank Ltd for ten years and has chaired several other organisations, including Intergen Ltd, Standards New Zealand, two SOEs, the New Zealand Telecommunications Forum and Canterbury Opera. In 2013, the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation published a book it had commissioned Richard to write, ‘Guidance for the Directors of Banks’, aimed principally at directors of banks in developing countries worldwide.

  • Denise Bovaird BCom, FCA, MInstD

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    Denise Bovaird has had a number of governance and risk management roles. She is currently a director on the board of the Real Estate Agents Authority and from 2010 to 2013 a Commissioner on the Earthquake Commission. She has chaired the Audit and Risk Committees of both these Crown Entities. Denise is also a risk management consultant with Navigatus Consulting specialising in strategic and organisational risk with private and public sector clients throughout New Zealand. She has a passion for assisting clients to set up risk management frameworks that add value to their organisation. She has had a number of corporate and consultancy risk management roles over the last 20 years. In 2007 Denise was the President of the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants during which time she chaired the Institute’s Board after serving for six years on the Board.

  • Giselle McLachlan CMInstD

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    Giselle is an experienced company director, CEO and a governance specialist.  With roles in the Agricultural sector right through to partnership in law firms and General Counsel for New Zealand’s largest Insurance company Giselle has a broad base for governance.  She has had executive responsibility for risk (alongside law and compliance and other functions) and served for four years on the Audit and Risk Committee of New Zealand's Earthquake Commission. Giselle also chaired the Audit Committee for the Institute of Financial Advisers.  Giselle is currently the CEO of Landpro Limited, a progressive survey and planning company based in Cromwell, Central Otago

  • Silvana Schenone

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    Silvana is a corporate partner at MinterEllisonRuddWatts, experienced in advising clients on a range of M&A transactions and is recognised as a leading adviser in her field. Silvana has a remarkable international background, born in Chile, of Chilean mother and Italian father, and having worked in New York, Chile and New Zealand. Silvana is a Member of the NZ Takeovers Panel, appointed by the Governor General. Silvana is the author of Duties and Responsibilities of Directors and Company Secretaries in New Zealand, the most up to date text, referred to by the directors’ community in New Zealand, on this very important topic. Silvana holds a Master in Laws from Harvard University, with distinction in corporate law and governance. Silvana is a member of the Latin America New Zealand Business Council, Global Women and a frequent speaker at conferences and seminars in connection with M&A and corporate topics, diversity and leadership.

  • Jo Brosnahan QSO, MA Hons, FCILT, FNZIM, CFInstD

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    Jo is a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Directors, Chair of Northpower Fibre (ultra-fast broadband), on the Auckland Museum Trust Board and Maritime NZ, Chair of Rotorua Lakes Audit and Risk Comm and Principal of Leaders for the Future.   She is Chair of the Taitokerau Education Trust, supporting digital learning in low decile schools in Northland, a member of the Centre for Brain Research Advisory Board, and of other trusts. She is the Founder and Advisory Trustee of Leadership NZ, was Chair for more than a decade and has had an extensive governance career.  She was previously CEO of the Northland Regional Council and of the Auckland Regional Council. 
    As a Harkness Fellow and Aspen Scholar, Jo spent a year researching leadership in the USA.  In addition to her governance roles, she develops and facilitates leadership and governance programmes.

  • Paul Connell CA CFInstD

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    Paul is an independent director with extensive experience as a consultant, executive and director in a variety of industries. Since 2000 he has been a director of a number of listed companies, private companies and public entities. He is presently Chair of the Accreditation Council, Director and of Unison Networks Ltd, Unison Fibre Ltd, ETEL Ltd, Hall’s Logistics Group Ltd and Telarc Ltd. He is founding Independent Chair of the Hamilton City Council Audit and Risk Committee, Chair of Unison Networks Audit and Risk and Chair of Bobux International Limited.

  • Simon Jensen MInstD, LLB, BCom

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    Simon is a partner at Buddle Findlay. He has over 25 years’ corporate governance experience and has been on the Boards of Visa New Zealand, The Warehouse Financial Services Ltd (where he Chaired the Board) and AGC New Zealand. He regularly advises boards and management of listed companies, banks, Crown entities, trusts and public issuers on governance. Prior to working at Buddle Findlay, Simon spent 15 years as general counsel for Westpac Banking Corporation in New Zealand, followed by four years acting as a consultant on pan-industry projects in the banking and finance sector. 

  • Catherine McMillan BCom (Hons), CA, DipTchng, MInstD

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    Catherine has experience in the public sector, corporate business and education, in both senior management and governance roles. She currently has her own consultancy business which focuses on professional and executive education, strategy development and business re-structuring. She has held governance roles in a variety of organisations and is currently a trustee with CORE Education Charitable Trust, Te Kōhaka o Tūhaitara Trust and Community Wellbeing North Canterbury Community Trust. In addition, she sits on the Christ’s College Board as the Christ College Old Boys Association representative.

  • Craig Rust NDB, NDA, CA, MInstD

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    Craig formed a business development consultancy practice Business Innovators in 2002, providing a range of advice to small to medium-sized businesses across New Zealand. Craig is a Chartered Accountant, director and chair of the board for several companies. Craig has experience in a number of sectors including manufacturing, exporting, retail and the service sector. Craig has received accolades from several businesses who have won business awards, including one being named the fastest-growing company in the Deloitte Top 50.

  • David Sutton MInstD

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    David is an Internal Audit Partner at KPMG Auckland. He was most recently chief audit executive (CAE) for Telecom NZ, a SEC registered company with approximately $NZ4b in revenues, leading the risk, internal audit, and compliance teams. David has been working as a CAE of listed entities for the past seven years. He has international Sarbanes-Oxley experience with Shell Corporation and Microsoft and 11 years with PricewaterhouseCoopers in New Zealand providing risk management, internal and external audit services to a wide range of clients. David is currently president of the Institute of Internal Auditors of New Zealand and was New Zealand Internal Auditor of the Year in 2011.

  • Mike Wood BE, FIPENZ, CMInstD

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    Mike Wood is a highly experienced consultant with Broadleaf Capital International, providing risk management advice, training, and cost and benefits risk assessments for a wide range of public and private sector organisations. He is a past chair of the New Zealand Society for Risk Management. His work has taken him to Australia, the Middle East and Canada, where projects have included risk assessments for substantial civil and electrical infrastructure, mining, and oil and gas projects. Mike also has extensive governance experience in the not-for-profit sector and is currently the deputy Chair of the Wellington City Mission, and a trustee of the Youth Cultures & Community Trust and the Ignite Sport Trust.

  • Geof Shirtcliffe, MInstD

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    Geof is a corporate and securities partner at Chapman Tripp.  His principle expertise is in corporate transactions (M&A, joint ventures, takeovers and restructurings), equity capital markets (listed and non-listed) and corporate governance. Geof is a previous member of Chapman Tripp’s national board and current member of its Audit and Risk Committee. He also sits on the Partnership Admissions Committee and previously chaired the Incomes Committee. He also sits on the Partnership Admissions Committee and previously chaired the Incomes Committee.  In addition, Geof is a board member of the Orpheus Choir, chair of the Wellesley College board of trustees and a past president of the Law and Economics Association of New Zealand.

  • Kevin McCaffrey B Soc Sc, M Mngt, CMInstD, FCS

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    Kevin was formerly a Partner in PwC with leadership roles across the Asia Pacific region. His competencies are in Governance, Strategy and Change Management across a range of industry sectors and countries. In 2006 he completed a Master’s degree in Governance and launched his own firm Effective Governance Ltd. In 2015 EY purchased the Intellectual Property of EG where Kevin now leads the Governance practice in Oceania. He currently serves on commercial and NFP boards and guest lectures on the MBA programme at AUT University.