Ms Valeur said she sees her new role as an exciting opportunity to contribute to the IoD as it embraces the needs of the modern business leader: ‘I would like to see the IoD further strengthen the good work they are already doing in training, governance and policy. I also want to see membership numbers increase.’
The IoD has had a troubled few months after the suspension of former chairwoman Lady Barbara Judge over allegations of racism, sexism and bullying. Lady Judge had been the first woman to chair the IoD and the disappointing end to her appointment was a setback for the female business community.
Ms Valeur’s appointment is a clear
signal that the IoD wants to show it is serious about diversity and corporate governance.
A keen advocate for boardroom diversity and a specialist in corporate governance, Ms Valeur founded Board Apprentice, a not-for-profit organisation that provides hands-on experience at the top of businesses. It’s telling that the director general of the IoD, Stephen Martin, alluded to this in his welcoming comments.
He said: ‘Charlotte doesn’t just talk the talk when it comes to diversity. With Board Apprentice she has already made a genuine difference, and I’m sure she will continue in this vein as chair of the
Ms Valeur says her style of leadership will be collaborative, with ‘honesty, transparency and trust [being] paramount’.
She added: ‘Equality and diversity are very important issues to me, and I bring these messages to any role I hold. We are all equal human beings and for me someone’s background, ethnicity, gender or any other difference doesn’t change how I treat them. I believe we should all have equal access to opportunities if we are prepared to put in the hard work. I also believe today’s leaders should lead by example and take their responsibilities as role models seriously.’
With her new role at the IoD, Ms Valeur says she will have to take a more back-seat role at Board Apprentice as she spreads the message about boardroom diversity further afield.
‘I will continue with Board Apprentice and hope to grow it further. However, my day-to-day involvement will reduce as we sign up more franchise holders,’ she said.
‘I am so grateful for all the amazing volunteers who are continuing to be part of the Board Apprentice journey, enabling more companies and boards to collaborate to help diversity at the top happen.’
Ms Valeur’s success has been welcomed by the local branch of the IoD and Island business leaders. She was chosen as the IoD’s Director of the Year for a Small Organisation last year for her role at Board Apprentice.