A case for corporate governance in FM profession
For some time now, it has been a major concern for many stakeholders, including members of the Association of Facilities Management Practitioners, Nigeria (AFMPN), that there isn’t good or corporate governance in the Facilities Management (FM) profession.
For instance, since the inaugural elections that took place in February 2021 to elect the officers of AFMPN to oversee the affairs of the professional body, there have been cases of widespread wrongdoings including violation of the Association’s constitution, abuse of positions, power and process. Self-interest and instant gratification have overtaken the wider interests of the association and its members.
It is for this reason that principles of corporate governance have been outlined below:
Corporate governance is the combination of rules, processes, policies and laws by which private, public or not-for-profit organizations are operated, regulated and controlled. The term encompasses the internal and external factors that affect the interest of stakeholders, including shareholders, customers, suppliers, government regulators and management.
Depending on the designation adopted by a corporate entity, whether board of directors or executive council, this group of executives is responsible for creating a framework for corporate governance that best aligns business conduct with corporate objectives.
Good corporate governance involves establishing principles of transparency, equity, compliance, responsibility and accountability. In particular, it seeks to address questions regarding the effectiveness, completeness and correctness of its financial stewardship.
Organizational governance is typically formalized and optimized in phases, often beginning with an initial governance structure that reflects or meets the needs of an organization. As an organization grows and matures, its governance framework, more controls such as performance indicator, measurement tools will be required.
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Corporate governance is critical for the proper functioning of an organization. Demonstrating good corporate governance is important for maintaining a company’s reputation and recognizing the importance of its members.
Good governance ensures an association’s integrity, overall direction, risk management and success planning. This helps to build a strong community of members, partner relationship and trust. Demonstrating good corporate governance is often considered as important as profitability for businesses.
Effective organizational governance systems support an organization’s goals. They are thorough, documented, and available to all relevant stakeholders. Here are some important characteristics:
Accountability: Accountability is the cornerstone of good governance. In general, your company is accountable to those who will be affected by its decisions or actions as well as the applicable rules of law. Your governance should commit to this external accountability and document the corresponding functional groups or roles whose work must adhere to the standards documented.
Transparency: Transparency means that information should be provided in the manner that is best suited to the audience. It should be freely available and directly accessible to those who will be affected by governance policies and practices and the resulting outcomes. Decisions taken must be in compliance with established rules and regulations.
Responsibility: Good governance requires that organizations and their processes are designed to serve the present and future best interests of stakeholders within a reasonable timeframe.
Inclusive Participation: Governance requires the leaders to identify and understand stakeholders’ interests. The information gathered should be sorted, combined, and discussed to reach consensus about the practices and standards that are in the best interest of the company and its stakeholders, and how they can be achieved in a sustainable and prudent manner.
Integrity: Good governance requires performing duties honestly and in accordance with moral principles.
Respect For Rule of Law/Constitution: Good governance requires following rules and regulation to remain within the law both internally and externally, and demonstrate social responsibility.
So far, the purpose for establishing the association which is to enhance and standardize the practice of FM in Nigeria has not yet been achieved. Hopefully, the right leadership will come on board to fulfil its objectives.