Why be a non-exec when you’re already captured the executive role in government?

Posted on

In the light of Ivan Horrocks article this morning this report from the FT is interesting:

The attempt by Francis Maude, cabinet secretary, to inject commercial acumen into Whitehall by putting leading business figures on departmental boards is failing to live up to its billing, with some departments rarely consulting their external non-executive directors.

The Treasury department’s supervisory board met only once in the year to April 2012, according to a report by Insight Public Affairs, a consultancy. The energy department’s board met twice, compared to 15 meetings in the transport department, reflecting the inconsistent involvement of non-executive directors.

Let's be candid though, the Treasury board doesn't need to meet. Big business already runs HMRC and seconds most Treasury policy staff. And what can energy do without imploring big business? When capture has happened whether you turn up or not to a non-exec meeting makes little difference; you've already got the executive on side.