King IV™ Cube

Designed by Viv Oates, the cube shows the links between the role of the board, the chapter headings of the King IV™ code and the basic methodology for responding to the governance model.

Wanted: leaders who keep their fingers clean and hands dirty

Moral hazards: Former British chief rabbi Jonathan Sacks — an exponent of moral leadership — makes the telling point that transparency and accountability are required, even if leaders have impeccable reputations. Picture: REUTERS Jacques Pauw’s riveting tell-all book The President’s Keepers exposed the extent of the morass in which the country has found itself. But while state-owned enterprises and organs of state were fingered, I couldn’t help wonder about the knock-on effect of the weakening of our institutions on the broader economy. Little did I suspect that the decline also permeates the private sector. The collapse of Steinhoff on the back of grand larceny by its former CEO has had international repercussions, with global investment banks reporting elevated credit provisions in the first quarter and local investors still reeling from the decline in the value of their investments. At the annual general meeting a Dutch investor made a call for contrition and atonement to the board. Even the chairwoman of Steinhoff International acknowledged that the scandal had led to a trust deficit for the whole of the South African corporate establishment. Since then, we have had well-publicised issues with the Resilient group, Tiger Brands and the resignation of the Imperial CEO. Traditionally, the agency problem caused by one person making decisions that affect broader stakeholders is solved in finance by ensuring that executives have sufficient “skin in the game” to be good stewards of an organisation and consider the long-term wellbeing of the organisation. But what if, despite the financial incentive, leaders still behave unethically? Similarly, why do politicians choose ill-conceived populist policies or, worse, loot state coffers at the expense of their careers? I had to search for answers from unlikely sources. Former British chief rabbi Jonathan Sacks has published extensively on the issue of moral leadership. He insists transparency and accountability are required even if leaders have impeccable reputations, because when money is at stake leaders face the moral hazard of maximum temptation with maximum opportunity. Sacks quotes as an example of accountability how the biblical Moses insisted the donations of gold collected to build the first Jewish temple had to be independently recorded by Levites. Unfortunately, the VBS Bank scandal has shaken the foundations of the auditing profession, which makes even such independent verification duplicitous.

The scary thing is that this governance malaise we find ourselves engulfed in is mirrored in a number of leading global economies. The CEO of Australian financial services giant AMP had to resign after revealing his company overcharged customers and misled regulators. This led Australian regulators to institute a new criminal penalty regime, which could lead to executives landing in jail for up to 10 years. In the UK, Sir Martin Sorrell of WPP, a prominent figure in business circles and one of the highest paid CEOs in that country, having lorded over the advertising industry for more than three decades, resigned after a whistleblower exposed his personal conduct and the misuse of company funds. In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s third term is being threatened by a scandal over the sale of public land to a school connected to his wife. But even this is no panacea. Eyebrows were raised when the doyen of corporate governance in SA, Mervyn King, was quoted as saying ‘negligent oversight by a director is not a crime’ Far from being a uniquely developed world problem, India’s state-owned Punjab National Bank uncovered a $2bn fraud. While poor governance in a state-owned bank may be met with apathy, this was closely followed by two high-profile cases of poor lending standards at two leading privately owned banks, ICICI and Axis. However, things got more complicated for the CEO of ICICI, when dealings between her husband and the main shareholder of the bank were exposed. Even in India, it would appear that poor governance has permeated from state banks to some of the leading privately owned banks, requiring regulators to insist on stricter rules on board composition. If auditors cannot be trusted, perhaps other insiders can help? Independent nonexecutive board directors may well be the last recourse for investors. Carefully selecting members of the board and regularly engaging with them has become a key tenet of our investment process. But even this is no panacea. Eyebrows were raised when the doyen of corporate governance in SA, Mervyn King, was quoted as saying “negligent oversight by a director is not a crime”. Our society is crying out for more: a better vision for our country, more inclusive thinking from our business leaders and policies that sustainably deliver value for society at large while adhering to sound moral principles. It is clearly inadequate to believe politicians or business leaders whose only promise is greater riches. A track record of success may not even be sufficient. Leadership has morphed from being able to do a job competently to one in which leaders must deliver results while at the same time doing good for society at large. We’re reminded of Cyril Ramaphosa’s #ThumaMina, a call for all of us to rally together. But can this really happen in business? In his 20th letter to Amazon shareholders, Jeff Bezos, one of the richest people in the world, explains how a culture of high standards is key to providing better products and services. What resonates is his mention that standards are contagious: bring someone new to a team with high standards, the founder of Amazon says, and they will adapt. But if low standards prevail, they too will quickly spread. It is time for SA to also demand higher standards and a new style of leadership.

Rassou is head of equities at Sanlam Investment.

Food for Thought – 13 things to give up to be successful!

Published December 27, 2017

Michael McMahon,
Director of MGM 1 PTY LTD

13 things to give up to be successful

Somebody once told me the definition of hell:

“On your last day on earth, the person you became will meet the person you could have become.” — Anonymous

Sometimes, to become successful and get closer to the person you can become, you don’t need to add more things — give some of them up.

Certain things are universal, which will make you successful if you give up on them, even though each one of us could have a different definition of success.

You can give up on some of them as soon as today, while it might take a bit longer to give up on others.

  1. Give up on the unhealthy lifestyle

“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim Rohn

If you want to achieve anything in life, everything starts here. First, you should take care of your health, and there are only three things you need to keep in mind:

  1. Quality Sleep
  2. Healthy Diet
  3. Physical Activity

Small steps, but you will thank yourself one day

2.  Give up the short-term mindset

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” — Mae West

Successful people set long-term goals, and they know these aims are merely the result of short-term habits that they need to do every day.

These healthy habits shouldn’t be something you do; they should be something you embody. There is a difference between: “Working out to get a summer body” and “Working out because that’s who you are.”

3.  Give up on playing small

“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone, and as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”   —  Marianne Williamson

If you never try and take great opportunities or allow your dreams to become realities, you will never unleash your true potential.

And the world will never benefit from what you could have achieved.

So voice your ideas, don’t be afraid to fail, and certainly don’t be afraid to succeed.

4.  Give up your excuses

“It’s not about the cards you’re dealt, but how you play the hand.”

― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Successful people know that they are responsible for their life, no matter their starting point, weaknesses, and past failures. Realising that you are responsible for what happens next in your life is both frightening and exciting.

And when you do, that becomes the only way you can become successful, because excuses limit and prevent us from growing personally and professionally.

Own your life; no one else will.

5.  Give up the fixed mindset

“The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative ways.”  ― Robert Greene, Mastery

People with a fixed mindset think their intelligence or talents are pre-determined traits that cannot be changed. They also believe that talent alone leads to success — without hard work. But they’re wrong.

Successful people know this. They invest an immense amount of time on a daily basis to develop a growth mindset, acquire new knowledge, learn new skills and change their perception so that it can benefit their lives.

Who you are today is not who you have to be tomorrow.

6.  Give up believing in the “magic bullet.”

“Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better” — Émile Coué

Overnight success is a myth. Successful people know that making small continuous improvement every day will be compounded over time and give them desired results.

That is why you should plan for the future, but focus on the day that’s ahead of you, and improve just 1% every day.

7.  Give up your perfectionism

“Shipping beats perfection.” — Khan Academy’s Development Mantra

Nothing will ever be perfect, no matter how much you try.

Fear of failure (or even fear of success) often prevents you from taking action and putting your creation out there in the world. But a lot of opportunities will be lost if you wait for things to be right.

8.  Give up multi-tasking

“Most of the time multitasking is an illusion. You think you are multitasking, but in reality, you are actually wasting time switching from one task to another “

— Bosco Tjan

Successful people know this. That’s why they choose one thing and then beat it into submission. No matter what it is — a business idea, a conversation, or a workout.  Being fully present and committed to one task is indispensable.

9.  Give up your need to control everything

“Some things are up to us, and some things are not up to us.” — Epictetus

Differentiating these two is crucial. Detach from the things you cannot control, focus on the ones you can, and know that sometimes, the only thing you will be able to control is your attitude towards something.

10.  Give up on saying yes to things that don’t support your goals

“He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would achieve much must sacrifice much; he who would attain highly must sacrifice greatly.”  — James Allen

Successful people know that in order to accomplish their goals, they will have to say NO to certain tasks, activities, and demands from their friends, family, and colleagues.

In the short-term, you might sacrifice a bit of instant gratification, but when your goals come to fruition, it will all be worth it.

11.   Give up the toxic people

“Stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution.”

— Albert Einstein

People you spend the most time with add up to who you become.

If you spend time with those who refuse to take responsibility for their life, always find excuses and blame others for the situation they are in, your average will go down, and with it your opportunity to succeed.

However, if you spend time with people who are trying to increase their standard of living, and grow personally and professionally, your average will go up, and you will become more successful. Take a look at around you, and see if you need to make any changes.

12.  Give up your need to be liked

“You can be the juiciest, ripest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be people who hate peaches.” — Dita Von Teese

Think of yourself as a market niche. There will be a lot of people who like that niche, and there will be individuals who don’t. And no matter what you do, you won’t be able to make the entire market like you.

This is completely natural, and there’s no need to justify yourself.

The only thing you can do is to remain authentic, improve and provide value every day, and know that the growing number of “haters” means that you are doing remarkable things.

13.  Give up wasting time

“The trouble is, you think you have time” — Jack Kornfield

You only have this one crazy and precious life. That’s why you owe it to yourself to see who you can become, and how far you can go. However, to do that, you need to ditch meaningless time wasters and stop allowing them to be an escape from your most important goals.

To do that, you should learn how to take control over your focus, attention and make the most out of your 24 hours within a day. Remember that you will die, so never stop creating your legacy and doing the things that will enrich your life.

Good Luck … the journey is a good one!

Published December 27, 2017                                  Michael McMahon, 

Director of MGM 1 PTY LTD


Seven Reasons To Hire A Consultant


From filling a short-term staffing gap to the implementation of a major programme of organisational structural change, consultants can provide valuable expertise and insights to help companies achieve their goals and execute a strategy.
But when is the right time to hire a consultant, how do you choose a good consultant, and what on-going steps should you take to ensure you get the best out of a client consultant relationship? An article by Jake Fox of Whitecap Consulting.

1. External validation: Consultants will have a broad overview, understanding, and external perspective. A second opinion can provide reassurance prior to making a key business decision.
2. More time and cost effective: A consultant can be tasked to focus on a specific project and see it through on deadline, without distractions and day-to-day pressures. This often makes bringing in a consultant much more time and cost effective than running a project in-house.
3. Specific knowledge, skills and experience: Consultants give business leaders the opportunity to bring in niche skills on a “pay as you go” basis, without the commitment of employing someone.
4. Ability to challenge: Their objective position means consultants can bring a fresh perspective. A good consultant should not be afraid to challenge, and their unique position means they can do so without the fear of reprisals that employees might have.
5. Impartial advice: Hiring consultants can offer business leaders a way to reach or justify a desired conclusion and avoid internal conflict. This can be particularly valuable in difficult situations such as job cuts and major operational or strategic changes.
6. Knowledge of best practice: Consultants are working with multiple clients in the same sector and often serving various clients facing similar problems across different sectors.
7. Access to information and resources: Consultants that specialise in niche areas or particular business functions are able to bring in data and systems that may not be financially viable for their client companies.

Overall, consultants bring a wealth of strengths to your business and can deliver a wide range of services. So, if you’re seeking a solution to a particular business problem, undergoing organisational change or can see new market opportunities but lack the resources to follow them up, a consultant may be the answer you need.

4 Simple Steps to a Great Elevator Pitch

Does your firm have a value proposition? Is it developed into a messaging hierarchy that every single person in the company can articulate? If you were in an elevator with your absolutely best prospective customer, could you succinctly state how you offer value to that person and their firm? Could everyone and anyone in your company deliver the value proposition in, say, an elevator?

Here’s a quick 4 step elevator pitch template by Bruce McDuffee to help get you started with a messaging hierarchy based on the value proposition. The first step is to prepare your pitch.

Step 1 – Answer the question ‘What does [insert company name] do?”

If you say, we manufacture widgets with feature, feature, feature and benefit, benefit, benefit then you might as well shut up and go home right then and there. If you haven’t realized it by now, features and benefits do not foster engagement unless there is a distinct and immediate need at the very moment you state your F’s & B’s.

Studies have shown that only 3% of your prospective customers are ready to make a buying decision at any given time such as being in an elevator with you. If you spent all day riding the elevator at your next conference and were lucky enough to ride with 100 prospective customers, only 3 would be ready to hear your product pitch.

Instead of a product pitch, try starting with your (or your company’s) unique and interesting value. You might say, “We [state your value proposition]”, then you have a good shot at gaining your elevator companion’s interest. For example, you might say “We’re in the business of reducing risk of FDA violations for food manufacturing companies”. Hmmm, thinks the VP Quality of Kraft. Since your prospect is the VP Quality for a major global food manufacturing company, maybe he’s interested in a bit more information.

One big mistake a lot of manufacturing companies make is that they craft a value proposition as a description of the company or the offering. This is not a value proposition. A value proposition must answer the question, “Why should I choose your company instead of your competitor?”

Step 2 – Answer the question “Just how do you do that?”

Here is where you can introduce your offering and how the features and benefits support the value proposition. For example, after the prospect asks you how you can reduce risk of FDA violations in food production facilities, you could say, “By providing environmental monitoring systems with feature and benefit that is unique to the market. Our customers see a 95% reduction in FDA violations.”

Step 3 – Prove it.

Here is where you could tell a success story or talk about a major customer and how they use your company’s offering to achieve the value proposition you opened with.

Tell your elevator companion how you are unique or different. “We’ve just launched a patented product that does this and that” or “We’re the only company with this technology that ……” State that you are providing this service for a major competitor (must be authentic here).

Step 4 – Leave the elevator.

If you did well and your elevator mate is indeed one of your ideal prospects, she will not let you go without getting your business card.

Naturally, good and proper message development takes a lot of work and should align with corporate strategy. If you can’t make a 30-second elevator speech like this one, you should take a hard look at your value proposition.

Here’s a test, dear reader. Quickly, state your firm’s value proposition in 50 words or less. If it doesn’t flow off your silver tongue with little effort, get to work on your messaging.

Elevator pitch for Consult 2050

We provide the opportunity to add significant value to your business through professional support and advice. We do this through our extensive network of world class consultants and industry experts. We pay particular attention to selecting the right consultant to ensure successful job completion and maximum value add.

Terms of Reference

1. Background and purpose

1.1. The HIA! Digital Network Members Advisory Board (hereinafter referred to as the “Board”) is hereby established and will operate from 1 July, 2017;
1.2. The relationship between the Members (those individuals or entities that are registered as members of the HIA! Digital Network) and the HIA! Digital Network (hereinafter referred to as the “Network”) and between the Members of the Network themselves will be overseen by the Board in accordance with this Terms of Reference and any amendments thereto;
1.3. The relationship between the Network and the HIA! Digital Network (Pty) Ltd (hereinafter referred to as the “Company”), a company registered in South Africa, and responsible for the formation, management, operations and activities of the Network, will be overseen by the Board; and
1.4. The purpose of this Terms of Reference is to formalize the duties of the Board.

2. Responsibilities

2.1. The activities performed by the Board include, but are not limited to:

2.1.1. Supporting the overall purpose and values of the Network as determined by the Company;
2.1.2. Providing a voice to the Members of the Network;
2.1.3. Recommending changes and/or guidance notes, where appropriate, to enhance clarity on the Code of Conduct developed by the Company, to ensure that it is appropriate for the achievement of the overall purpose and values of the Network;
2.1.4. Reviewing administrative and legal documentation relating to Members for the registration and continuation of Members into/in the Network;
2.1.5. Providing suggestions and advice to the Company for the effective and efficient application of these registration and continuation processes;
2.1.6. Supporting the Network in promoting the growth, value, reputation and brand of the Network, the Company and the Members themselves; and
2.1.7. Reviewing any complaints by and against Members and carrying out disciplinary reviews relating to any complaints against Members to determine an appropriate course of action;

2.2. Communicating the progress of the Network to the Members and other stakeholders to ensure transparency; and
2.3. Dealing with any other Membership related issues that might arise from time to time.

3. Timing and structure

3.1. The Board shall meet at least twice a year;
3.2. The Members are represented by the Board;
3.3. The first Chairperson of the Board, together the first Members of the Board, will be appointed by the founder of Network. Thereafter, the Members will nominate representatives from amongst themselves. The Chairperson will be appointed from amongst the elected Members of the Board and shall serve for a period of at least 1 year to ensure continuity but no longer than 3 years;
3.4. The Board shall consist of at least 6 Members of the Network;
3.5. The founder of the Network or his alternate will be a member of the Board;
3.6. At least one third of the members (excluding the founder) shall rotate off the Board on an annual basis; and
3.7. At least 60% of the appointed Members shall all be present to ensure the meeting is quorate.

4. Reporting and amendments

4.1. The Board shall determine how it will report its activities to the Members to ensure transparency;
4.2. The Board shall report to the Members at the Annual General Meeting.

5. Amendments

5.1. Any amendments to this Terms of Reference should be submitted to the Company for consideration.


Thought for the day

I extracted this paragraph from an excellent article written by Mark Morgan entitled:

Six Strategy Crushing Mistakes organizations make and how you can rise above the rubble

“People will do for a cause what they will never do for money. That has always been true but in the industrial age, we could get away with treating the organization like a machine. Not now. We have entered the age of the purpose driven organization. Part of the problem with strategic execution is that people in organizations lack a clear line of sight between what they do and what is important about what they do. Every organization serves a purpose or it goes out of business. Businesses that are founded to accomplish great things are far more likely to execute their strategies because their people know how important it is that they do what they do. Strategies die of apathy and a lack of emotional commitment.”

Founding Statement


To build better organizations through the collective experience of our diverse HIA! Digital Network.

In a world of unprecedented complexity and opportunity, organizations are seeking new innovations and connections to strengthen their competitiveness. We collaborate with our Clients and Network members to help grow and improve organizational performance in a sustainable way.


  • We uphold the highest standards of integrity;
  • We only work with ethical people and clients;
  • We deliver high quality work that is valued by our clients;
  • We collaborate and build trust with our clients and network members


To offer professionals, consultants, investors, mentors and coaches a platform to network and access a wider market place.

To offer clients access to a broad range of reliable skills, capabilities, knowledge and experience to resolve business issues in an agile and sustainable manner.

(Refer to separate document)


We offer a digital platform for independent professionals to collaborate; improve both the quantity and quality of lead generation; provide more competitive pricing through scale and the ability to enter innovative risk and reward related contracts; enhance the quality of the solution and work products; and access funding and investment opportunities.

Clients engaging with the platform benefit from knowing that their service providers meet high professional and ethical standards, subscribe to a strict code of conduct and set of values and are regularly and transparently “rated” for each project completed.


Our primary offering is a versatile platform to:

  • Connect likeminded professionals;
  • Share ideas and solutions;
  • Develop relationships, create strategic partnerships/alliances and transactional/project partnerships, alliances and/or sub-contracting agreements;
  • Strengthen proposals, enhance the quality of solutions and service offerings and improve the overall value of the service provided to clients;
  • Generate leads through referrals to help and support the members of the HIA! Digital Network; consolidating and managing shared opportunities, combining talent and tracking/monitoring progress; accessing a variety of projects to participate in and contribute towards;
  • Provide a peer review system which offers an opportunity to coach, develop and encourage development and improvement;
  • Share resources, including offering tools and templates to improve standardization, support proposals and enhance the quality of work products;
  • Establish a methods and practices platform to support various components of a consulting engagement, such as, basic policies and procedures, pipeline management, contracting, engagement terms, client acceptance and quality reviews;
  • Share knowledge, experience and continuous learning; and
  • Access skilled resources with specific specialized capabilities and/or sector knowledge.

Our secondary offering includes a platform to: 

  • Benefit members from centralized negotiations for products, services and licences, where appropriate; 
  • Support “crowd funding” investment opportunities; 
  • Co-ordinate risk and reward negotiations relating to potential project funding and support


Our primary offering includes the following:

  • Access to a wide range of reliable professionals, consultants, mentors and coaches – the HIA! Digital Network provides access to a range of subject matter and industry specialists; 
  • Access to a full range of specialists across the consulting value chain from strategy to execution; 
  • Lower risk due to the regular screening, rating and accreditation of members – members are regularly reviewed by their peers and can only be registered if they are in good standing. Members are required to renew their membership on an annual basis; 
  • Pricing flexibility – the HIA! Digital Network can offer a certain level of flexibility in pricing from a risk & reward point of view which strengthens the overall value proposition as affordability is taken into account; 
  • Flexibility in structuring the offering/service/solution to suit the timing and budgetary constraints of clients; 
  • Higher quality due to the regular review of work products and compliance with standard policies and procedures; 
  • Access to tools, templates and methods; 
  • Invitations to events, meetings and conferences at lower costs; 
  • Access to an allocated client advisor for advice or simply as a sounding board;
  • Access to an experienced board of advisors to discuss, brainstorm and advise on client related challenges; and
  • Local experience supported by global knowledge, where required.

Code of Conduct


  1. Code of Conduct – (hereinafter referred as the “Code”) – This guideline which sets out the minimum standards of behaviour expected by any Member of HIA! Digital Network;
  2. Network – a collaborative Network of experienced business people, professionals, consultants and investors who are registered members of HIA! Digital Network;
  3. Members – Individuals and organizations who have signed a Membership Agreement to join the Network, is a Member in good standing and whose Membership has not lapsed for any reason whatsoever;
  4. Values – The values of HIA! Digital Network;
  5. Client – an organization to whom the Network or the Member of the Network is providing services, or is planning to provide services, or is in the contracting phase of providing services.


This Code of Conduct has been prepared for the guidance of HIA! Digital Network (hereinafter referred to as the “Network”) Members. All Members are expected to comply with this Code of Conduct to protect and enhance the brand, reputation and integrity of the Network and the other Members. Guidance notes may be prepared from time to time to address specific interpretations and areas of ambiguity, but Members are expected to comply with both the spirit and form of the Code. Where Members are unsure of a course of action or behaviour, it is important to consult with the Network to ensure that the Code is not breached.

This document includes:

  1. A statement of what is meant by ethical behaviour and how it applies to the Member; and
  2. The Code of Conduct.



Members of the Network are expected to behave ethically. That is, Members are expected to “do the right thing”. At its most basic level, this means that Members should act with integrity in all dealings with Clients, colleagues, other professionals, Members of the Network and anyone else the Member meets in the ordinary course of their duties. Members should do nothing that could diminish the brand or reputation of the Network and of the Members. On the contrary, Members are expected to work diligently towards enhancing the brand and reputation of the Network. This includes any aspect of a Member’s personal conduct which could have a negative impact on the Network and other Members.

Members are expected to live the Values of the Network.


All Members of the Network are required, as a condition of membership, to adhere to the following Code of Conduct:

  1. Confidentiality. A Member will treat Client information and Network information as confidential (unless available to the public) and will neither take personal advantage of privileged information gathered during an assignment, nor enable others to do so;
  2. Unrealistic Expectations. A Member will refrain from encouraging unrealistic expectations or promising Clients that benefits are certain from specific consulting and advisory services. A Member will ensure that before accepting any engagement, a mutual understanding of the objectives, scope, workplan, and fee arrangements has been established with the Client.  A Member will advise the Client of any significant reservations the Member may have about the Client’s expectation of benefits from an engagement;
  3. Commissions / Financial Interests. A Member will neither accept commissions, remuneration nor other benefits from a third party in connection with recommendations to a Client without the Client’s knowledge and written consent, nor fail to disclose any financial interest in goods or services which form part of such recommendations;
  4. Assignments. A Member will only accept work that the Member is qualified to perform and in which the Client can be served effectively; a Member will not make any misleading claims and will provide references from other Clients, if requested;
  5. Disclosure and Conflicts of Interest. A Member will disclose at the earliest opportunity any special relationships, circumstances or business interests which might influence or impair, or could be seen by the Client or others to influence or impair the Member’s judgement or objectivity on an assignment. This requires the prior disclosure of all relevant personal, financial or other business interests that could not be inferred from the description of the services offered.

This relates to:

  • any directorship or controlling interest in any business in competition with the Client;
  • any financial interest in goods or services recommended or supplied to the Client;
  • any personal relationship with any individual in the Client’s employ;
  • any personal investment in the Client organization or in its parent or any subsidiary companies;
  • any recent or current engagements in sensitive areas of work with directly competitive Clients; and
  • any work for a third party on the opposite side of a transaction, e.g. bid defense, acquisitions, work for the regulator and the regulated, assessing the products of an existing Client.

A Member will not serve a Client under circumstances which are inconsistent with the Member’s professional obligations or which in any way might be seen to impair the Member’s integrity. Wherever a conflict or potential conflict of interest arises, the Member will, as the circumstances require, either withdraw from the assignment, remove the source of conflict or disclose and obtain the agreement of the parties concerned, in writing, to the performance or continuance of the engagement;

  1. Recruiting. A Member will not make offers of employment to or engage any member of the Client’s staff nor use the services of any such person either independently or via a third party unless they have first obtained the Client’s written consent;
  2. Standards of Service. A Member will carry out the duties, which he or she has undertaken for his/her Client diligently, conscientiously and with due regard to his/her Client’s interest.  Members will conduct their professional duties with integrity, due care and competence. A Member will maintain a fully professional approach in all dealings with Clients, the public and fellow Members;
  3. Personal Conduct. A Member shall be a fit and proper person to carry on the profession of consultancy and advisory services and shall always be of good reputation and character. Matters for concern might include:
  • conviction of a criminal offence or committal under bankruptcy proceedings;
  • censure or disciplining by a court or regulatory authority; and/or
  • unethical or improper behaviour towards employees or the public;
  1. Other Consultants. A Member will ensure that other consultants and advisers carrying out work on behalf of the Member are conversant with and abide by this Code of Conduct. A Member will sub-contract work only with the prior agreement of the Client and, except where otherwise agreed, will remain responsible for the performance of the work;
  2. Relationships and behaviour towards other Members of the Network. It is recognized that Members will compete from time to time for the same Client work and/or relationship. Nonetheless, a Member will act with integrity towards other Members of the Network to enhance the reputation and brand of the Network and will not do anything to bring the Network and/or another Member of the Network into disrepute. Where possible, Members are expected to collaborate. Members are encouraged to discuss any potential conflict with other Members. The ultimate deliberation should be measured against the Values of the Network; and 
  3. Compliance. Members shall comply with the laws of any jurisdiction within the Member operates.

Privacy Policy

1. Introduction and General Rules of Use

1.1 This website is owned and operated by HIA Digital Network (Proprietary) Limited (hereinafter referred to as “HDN”, “we”, “us” or “our”), a private company registered in the Republic of South Africa under company registration number 2017/202646/07.

1.2 Please read the terms and conditions contained herein carefully. Any user should refrain from using, or continuing to use this website unless he/she fully understands these terms and conditions and considers themselves bound to the provisions contained herein.

1.3 Your use of and access to this website are subject to all the terms and conditions as set out hereunder.

1.4 These terms and conditions are enforceable and binding upon the user, as read under the applicable provisions of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act No. 25 of 2002.

1.5 These terms and conditions of use may be altered from time to time without any prior notice to the user. All users have the responsibility of checking them from time to time, as the users use of this website are subject to the terms and conditions applicable on the date of use. The current terms and conditions are applicable as at July 2017.

2. Intellectual Property Rights

2.1 The entire content of this website (including all information, logos and other graphics) is protected by the Copyright Act No. 98 of 1978, the Trade Marks Act No. 194 of 1993, as well as all applicable national and international copyright and trademark legislation. HDN is the lawful owner of the copyright in and to the content of the website and of the trademarks contained herein.

2.2 You are only permitted to view, print or store electronically a copy of any information on our website solely for your personal, lawful, non-commercial use.

2.3 Any unauthorised use, reproduction, modification and/or distribution of any of the material contained in this website are strictly prohibited and constitute an unlawful infringement of HDN’s rights, including but not limited to its intellectual property rights.

2.4 You may not otherwise reproduce, modify, copy or distribute or use for commercial purposes any of the materials or content on this website without the explicit written consent from HDN.

2.5 All rights not expressly specified in these terms and conditions are strictly reserved.

3. Accuracy, Completeness and Timeliness of Information

3.1 All reasonable steps are taken to ensure that all published information on our website is accurate and up-to-date. We do not, however, warrant that the content or information displayed is always accurate, correct, complete and/or current.

3.2 It shall be the user’s sole responsibility to determine the accuracy of any of the content contained herein.

4. Links to other Websites

4.1 Any links on the HDN website may take you outside the HDN network and HDN accepts no responsibility for the content, accuracy or completeness of any third-party websites.

4.2 Any links will be provided for bona fide purposes and HDN cannot be held responsible for any subsequent change in other websites to which we provide a link. The inclusion of any link to other websites does not imply that HDN accepts or endorses any of the content displayed in such websites.

4.3 HDN makes no representations, or warranties, in respect of any endeavour by it to review the content of websites to which it provides links or anywhere else in the service, or any of the materials. As such, HDN accepts no responsibility whatsoever for the accuracy, copyright compliance, legality or appropriateness of any information, material or other content contained in the website, nor warrants nor endorses any advertising of third parties carried on the website nor though the provision of links to that carried on other websites.

5. Advertising and Sponsorship

5.1 Advertising and other promotional material of third parties may appear on our website from time to time. We do not necessarily endorse such third party/ies or any of such third party/ies products and/or the services which are offered.

5.2 Any advertisers and sponsors are solely responsible for ensuring that material submitted for inclusion on our website complies with all relevant laws and applicable regulations.

5.3 We will not be responsible for any error or inaccuracy in advertising and sponsorship material. Your reliance on any information contained in such material is entirely at your own risk.

5.4 We undertake to comply with the direct marketing provisions of the Consumer Protection Act No 68 of 2008 (“CPA”) and the CPA regulations, including the provisions relating to the direct marketing, as provided for under the provisions of the CPA.

6. Warranties and Disclaimers

6.1 HDN does not warrant that any technical aspects of the website or any HDN material will be free from error or that this website, HDN material or the server that makes it available are free of viruses or other harmful components.

6.2 Your use of this website is therefore exclusively at your sole risk.

6.3 Accordingly, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, whether express or implied.

7. Liability and Indemnity

7.1 We accept no liability, to the extent permitted by law, for any direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential loss or damage of any kind whatsoever or howsoever caused arising from the access or use of this website, or any HDN website.

7.2 You hereby indemnify HDN and its partners, affiliates, employees, agents, representatives and third party service providers, and hereby defend and hold each of them harmless from all claims and liabilities (including legal costs on an attorney-client scale) which may arise from your submissions, from your unauthorised use of material obtained through the website, or from your breach of this Agreement, or from any such acts through your use of the website.

8. Prohibited Activity
8.1 You are prohibited from doing any act that HDN in its sole and reasonable discretion may deem to be inappropriate and/or would be deemed to be an unlawful act or is prohibited by any laws applicable to this website, including but not limited to:

8.1.1 Any act that would constitute a breach of these terms and conditions or any applicable law or regulation in force at the time in question;

8.1.2 Using this website to defame HDN, its employees or other individuals or acting in such a way that brings into disrepute the good reputation of HDN;

8.1.3 Uploading any material that may contain viruses that may cause damage to the property of HDN, or the property of other third party.

9. Privacy Policy

9.1 The terms referred to in this privacy policy shall have similar meanings as contained in the Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000.

9.2 Any personal information or material sent to HDN website shall be subject to this privacy policy.

9.3 Personal Information which is submitted electronically by the user may be stored and used by HDN for legitimate, lawful purposes. If you are not in agreement that your Personal Information may be collected and/or stored and/or used, then do not access and/or make use of this website.

9.4 Personal Information may be collected upon registration on this website (if applicable) and upon the entering of any competitions, whether entered online or otherwise. All competitions will contain separate terms and conditions, which will be published on this website from time to time. It shall be the responsibility of the user to ensure that they read and fully understand the separate terms and conditions of any competition.

9.5 Personal Information enables us to constantly improve our services to the public, and assists us in preventing any unlawful or fraudulent activity which may be detected.

9.6 Personal Information may be shared between companies within the HDN, including but not limited to partners, affiliates, subsidiaries, associates, franchisees, agents, suppliers, whether international or domestic.

9.7 It is your responsibility to update the Personal Information provided by you to HDN, if same has changed or needs to be updated. HDN cannot be held responsible for any out dated Personal Information which you have provided.

9.8 Your privacy and the security of information you provide shall be of the utmost importance to us. Unless obliged to do so in terms of the law, we will not release, rent or sell personal information to any third parties, without your consent.

9.9 We treat all your information provided to us as strictly confidential and keep your registration details and any personal information you upload to us on secure servers. We will comply fully with all applicable South African Data Protection and consumer legislation in place, including those provisions contained in the CPA.

10. Applicable Law and Jurisdiction

This agreement is governed by the laws of the Republic of South Africa. Any dispute arising in relation to our agreement with you may, to the extent permitted by law and in the sole discretion of HDN, referred to arbitration at any venue or town in South Africa, and to be determined by applying the rules of the Arbitration Foundation of South Africa.


Thought for the day

Todays thought for the day was taken from an interesting article by Eric Chin.

“As the sharing economy continues its growth, crowd sourced consulting business models will connect clients directly to highly qualified, experienced consultants without the expensive price tags of the traditional brands. Turning the traditional consulting business model on its head, these expert networks are borderless teams that may well become viable substitutes (in Michael Porter’s language) to incumbent consulting giants.”

Eric Chin – Consultant to professional services firms on strategy, M&A and Asia

Consulting Firms


Moving governance from a Code to a conversation

So often the focus of corporate governance – and the reporting thereon – lies in the processes and committees that have been put in place by companies to ensure good governance. But what of the expectations governance creates and the outcomes it achieves and how are these shared with society?
What I like about the King IV™ Code of Corporate Governance, apart from the fact that it links ethical leadership to effective leadership, is its ultimate objective – sustainable development. King IV™ defines this as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs”.
In my view, this statement creates a very clear expectation of organisations applying the Code – that they too will have the same objective at heart, and that they subscribe to a certain will ‘to do good’. As outlined in the Code, the core philosophies on which sustainable development depend echo this sentiment. In fact, they spell out exactly what is required to achieve sustainable development:

  • Integrated thinking = Takes account of the connectivity and interdependencies between a range of factors that can affect an organisation’s ability to create value over time.
  • The organisation as an integral part of society = Organisations operate in a societal context, which they affect and by which they are affected.
  • Stakeholder inclusivity = There is an interdependent relationship between the organisation and its stakeholders, and the organisation’s ability to create value for itself depends on its ability to create value for others. An organisation becomes attuned to the opportunities and challenges posed by the triple context in which it operates by having regard to the needs, interests and expectations of material stakeholders.
  • Corporate citizenship = As the organisation is an integral part of society, it has corporate citizenship status. This status confers rights, obligations and responsibilities on the organisation towards society and the natural environment on which society depends.

Many will say that listed entities in South Africa already apply these philosophies, and that this has been practice for many years, given the principles introduced by the first King Code way back in ’94. And, of course, this will be evident if you attend AGMs, read company websites, annual reports, sustainability reports, or integrated reports. Or if you’re a shareholder receiving dividends. Or if you’re an employee, receiving training and other benefits. Or if you’re a charity that has benefitted from donations or corporate sponsorship in some way. I’m not denying this is all good stuff. After all, South Africa has been acknowledged as a global leader in corporate governance for some time now.

However, if listed companies are sincere about their governance efforts, and support the Code’s aspirations to achieve a move away from a ‘box-ticking’ exercise to a mindful application of corporate governance principles, and from a mindset of grudge compliance to an appreciation of the true value-add that they stand to benefit from when applying corporate governance as outlined in the Code, then they really should be considering corporate governance as an ongoing conversation between themselves and their many and varied stakeholders.
After all, in creating an expectation, i.e. “a belief that something will happen or is likely to happen; a feeling or belief about how successful, good, etc., someone or something will be”, is it still good enough to report back to society once or twice a year in a report or via a website on how governance is working?
In my view, in an age of 24/7 instant commentary via social media, and a culture of diminishing trust, organisations ought to be thinking about innovative ways to meaningfully connect to the world in which they operate, and share information on their corporate governance outcomes honestly and openly. After all, aren’t we all stakeholders by the very definition of the Code?

Owner, All About The Client Communications Pty Ltd