Monday, December 3, 2012

VACANCY – Executive Director



The Bridge Leadership Foundation (TBLF) - a non-profit leadership and mentoring Foundation based in Calabar, Cross River State – seeks to hire an outstanding individual to serve as its first Executive Director.

The Foundation is a young foundation committed to building generations of young people educated to become compassionate, entrepreneurial and engaged citizens who are empowered to take responsibility for their own lives and make a difference in their communities. The Board of Trustees seeks a dynamic and creative leader with impeccable integrity to further strengthen the work the Foundation has done.

Candidates must be deeply committed to the Foundation’s purpose and values. They should bring demonstrated interests, and optimally, professional experience, in the foundation’s core areas, and have a record of accomplishment. They must be interested in working with and answering to an active board that has high standards and also values its participation in policymaking.

KEY RESPONSIBILITIES:

In executing these responsibilities, the Executive Director must be able to engage trustees effectively and provide them with concise and rigorous information to make sound decisions. The Executive Director will report to the Board of Trustees and work closely with the Board Chair. The Executive Director will:

1.      Assume leadership for the creation, vision and implementation of an operational plan, covering administration and program development, including the setting of both short and long-term goals and objectives;
2.      Develop requests for proposals, assess and evaluate programs and make recommendations to the board.
3.      Develop and lead the strategy of the Foundation within the broad context of the local and national landscape by using performance measurements to guide strategic and operational decision-making.
4.      Take a leadership role in driving a collaborative process with the Board of Trustees, staff and members that would result in the development of goals, objectives and operational plans for the organization.
5.      Oversees preparation of the annual budget and other necessary financial documents. Provide information and justifications for Board of Trustees in its budgetary review and approval process.
6.      Ensure the organization has diverse staff with skills appropriate to the needs of the position through people management activities including hiring, separation of employment, ongoing staff development, performance management, compensation and benefits.
7.      Manage all fund development activities, including grant writing, cultivation and stewardship of donors, event planning, and identifying new resources. Actively seek and maintain a diverse donor base of individual, businesses, foundations and government segments.
8.      Build long term relationships with key donor segments based on mission, cultivation and stewardship, program outcomes and sound fiscal management.
9.      Lead organization's financial growth in order to maintain healthy cash flow, provide full services to our constituents and maintain adequate reserves to support board-approved investments and risk-taking.
10.  Develop a strategic marketing plan that provides a clear and concise message telling the Foundation’s story. Oversee the execution of marketing and media relations. Represent TBLF in all media relations by participating in interviews, developing press releases and all other media type engagements.

QUALIFICATIONS:

1.                  Undergraduate degree is required; an advanced degree is preferred.
2.                  A minimum of 5 years nonprofit work experience in comparable fields. At least 3 years of demonstrated success in staff leadership, fundraising, partnership development and financial management.
3.                  Demonstrated success of effectively leading change and organizational growth through strategic planning.
4.                  Demonstrated knowledge of working on youth related development programs and projects.
5.                  Demonstrated success in acquiring agency support through successful grant applications and general fund raising.
6.                  Strong fund development, marketing and public relations experience to successfully engage stakeholders, including funders, business partners, policy makers, media and communities.
7.                  Strong and effective oral and written communication skills.
8.                  Personal qualities that include integrity, commitment to TBLF’s mission, respect for diversity and the ability to inspire and motivate.


SALARY AND BENEFITS

Competitive salary that is commensurate with experience. No relocation allowance or benefits will be given.


TO APPLY: Qualified candidates are invited to send a substantive cover letter describing interest in the position and qualifications, resume/cv, salary history, and one writing sample to:
vacancy@thebridgeleadership.org by January 12, 2013.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

WE THANK YOU!

ThistlePraxis Consulting Limited would like to say THANK YOU to our Host, the Cross River State Government, Strategic Partners (CAPPS Consult & Friends Africa), Partners, Speakers, Delegates and all participants for the successful completion of the 2012 edition of the Africa CEO Round-table & Conference on Corporate Sustainability & Responsibility (AR-CSR™).
 
Please visit our Resources page at http://www.ar-csr.com/ for the following:  
  • Press Releases
  • Photo Gallery
  • Resolutions
  • Session Highlights
The Official Conference Report and Final Draft of Resolutions will be published soon. Please visit again to download a copy.

As we countdown to the 2013 edition tentatively scheduled to hold on June 20-21, 2013 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; we invite interested Sponsors, Partners and Delegates. Send us an email to request more information: info@ar-csr.com.

The AR-CSR™... towards a Sustainable Future for Africa.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Politics of Corporate Social Responsibility - by Kenneth Amaeshi

THE recent national debate over an alleged “gift” of a church building from an Italian company – Gitto Construzioni Generalli Nigeria Limited (CGC) – to President Jonathan’s hometown (Otuoke, Bayelsa State), together with the Central Bank’s financial donations to some State Governments, raises a fundamental question about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Nigeria: Is CSR mainly about corporate philanthropy or could there be more to it?

In a study I conducted about 6 years ago with some colleagues (Amaeshi, Adi, Ogbechie and Amao, 2006 - Corporate Social Responsibility in Nigeria: Indigenous practices or Western influences?, Journal of Corporate Citizenship, 24: 83-99), we found that corporate philanthropy – also known as corporate community investment or corporate giving – was the dominant understanding of CSR in Nigeria. That understanding is still very much the case today. This has included donations to schools, hospitals, local communities, prisons and orphanages; construction of roads and decoration of public spaces; economic empowerment and poverty alleviation.

It must be pointed out that whilst these are laudable corporate activities, they tend to distort the true and broader meaning of CSR. The emphasis on corporate philanthropy gives the broad CSR agenda poor characterisation and invariably an underserved negative reputation; and I will give valid reasons why.
A view that is rarely mentioned in CSR discourse in Nigeria is the idea that CSR is a business philosophy, one which aims to enhance the positive, as well as reduce the negative, impacts of corporate activities on society and its ecosystem. These impacts could be at the production, sale or consumption point.  A good example of a negative impact is the pollution from a production plant, which may cause some health hazards to residents not involved in the business’ operations. Another example could be the impacts of binge drinking on society, which is not factored into the production and sales of alcohol. In such instances, the social costs, including health costs arising from the use of alcoholic products, are borne by society.

These negative impacts on society are hardly accounted for in the profit and loss statements of most companies, nor is there any mention of such influences in their balance sheets. In other words, the firms externalise some of their costs by free-riding on available public or common resources. Other possible negative corporate impacts on society as a whole include: child labour, bribery and corruption, corporate connivance with oppressive government regimes to sell products and services (companies involved in arms and ammunitions are often accused of such deals), human rights abuses, et cetera.

Agreeably, businesses do not only generate negative impacts. They also create many positive impacts, which include jobs, tax contributions, contributions to economic development, and investments in human capital development, production of quality goods and services, profits et cetera. In some cases, firms voluntarily incur extra costs which go beyond the minimum expected by regulation, by providing education and other social infrastructure through philanthropic or other citizenship activities.
Traditionally, the burden of governing corporate impacts has always been borne by the State. In order to curtail negative impacts, the State uses regulatory mechanisms as taxes, subsidies and quotas. These regulatory mechanisms are not foolproof, however, not least due to information asymmetries between businesses, as generators of impacts, and the regulators, as governors of impacts. If these information asymmetries are not properly addressed, society at large suffers. And this is where true CSR, as a form of self regulation, serves as a very potent mechanism for addressing information asymmetries between businesses and the regulators.

It is a form of self-regulation that should be completely voluntary and driven by the values and philosophy of a business. From a best practice perspective, therefore, true CSR is a business orientation and culture that recognises the firm as an entity embedded in a network of relationships with different stakeholder groups; one that recognises that its success and sustainability is dependent on its genuine commitment and responsiveness to these stakeholder groups. This should afford any firm that is truly committed to it a richer and more advanced paradigm to continuously challenge its business purpose and align itself with its core values, aspirations and mission. It is a way of maintaining the legitimacy of a firm’s actions in the larger society by bringing its stakeholder concerns to the foreground and minimizing information asymmetries between actors.
CSR should not undermine the role of the government or other public governance modes in regulating corporate impacts. It should rather complement them. The ultimate goal of true CSR is to contribute to a better society.

CSR is beyond corporate philanthropy. It is a holistic business culture. It is a way of life – the ‘how’ of “how we do business”. The idea of CSR as corporate philanthropy is the most basic and lowest expression of CSR. By implication, the dominant view of CSR as corporate philanthropy amongst most Nigerian businesses needs to be seriously challenged. Nigerian businesses need to progress from this narrow understanding of CSR as corporate philanthropy to the understanding of CSR as a business philosophy. It is the government’s responsibility, above all, to provide an enabling environment for this type of CSR.

In that regard, Gitto’s operations in Nigeria should be thoroughly subjected to this broader test of CSR, and not the narrow view of corporate philanthropy, which can sometimes share a thin border with corruption and primordial politics.

Dr. Amaeshi is the Director of the Sustainable Business Initiative, at the University of Edinburgh, UK, and a Visiting Faculty at the Lagos Business School, Pan-African University, Nigeria. He is also a member of Thought Leadership Forum, Nigeria (Email: kenneth.amaeshi@ed.ac.uk ).

Sustainable Conversations - Saturday April 21, 2012

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Weekly Page on CSR Debuts..............



By popular demand, ThistlePraxis Consulting announces the commencement of a weekly page on CSR, CSR Files™ Weekly. In association with The Guardian Newspapers; the assessments and strategy firm will publish news, activities and other relevant content to enhance the practice of professionals on Sustainability and Social Responsibility issues in Nigeria and beyond.

In a statement by the Lead Consultant/CEO, Ini Onuk, ‘The launch of a weekly page brings to three – the variants of our contribution to the development of the industry through Research and Information. We hope to better engage business leaders, many of whom are not social media savvy and have been missing out on our virtual offerings’.

A sneak preview of the page reveals that there are indeed interesting and relevant content for every business leader. Sub-columns such as PRACTICE UPDATE, which highlights emerging developments in the industry; QUOTED, quotable quotes from leaders of thought; 10THINGS, the frontline section for analysis on Sustainable Development and REMINDER, a follow up section on very topical and somewhat controversial issues. 

The launch of the weekly page brings to three, the versions of CSR Files™ - the news and information product of the firm. Already in existence are the Quarterly Journal (distributed to leading organisations, hotels and business leaders across the continent as well as on select airlines) and a weekly eNewsletter (sent to an impressive database of practitioners, c-suite professionals and other interested individuals).

ThistlePraxis Consulting affirms her commitment to maintain the page and keep it editorially independent and professionally crisp with up-to-date information, in order to give readers a firm grasp of the industry, within the country, continent and beyond.

ABOUT THISTLEPRAXIS CONSULTING

ThistlePraxis Consulting Limited is an Assessments and Strategy Management consultancy practice based in Lagos, Nigeria with core interests in Corporate Sustainability and Social Responsibility.

ThistlePraxis was set up to facilitate the development of a more responsible business environment in Nigeria and Africa and has promoted an increased awareness of CSR as an element of business strategy as well as encouraged the discussions of CSR and Sustainability across the African continent.

Url: http:/www.thistlepraxisconsulting.com
Email: info@thistlepraxisconsulting.com, csrfiles@thistlepraxisconsulting.com
Twitter: @Files_CSR
Tel: +23412131776, +2348136611906

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Nigerian Fuel Subsidy Policy:Implications for Sustainable Development

The government of Nigeria’s removal of fuel subsidy on petroleum products (Premium Motor Spirit) – through her regulatory agency, Petroleum Product and Regulatory Agency (PPRA) on January 1, 2012 – increased the unit cost from 65.00 NGN (0.40 USD) to 143.00 NGN (0.90 USD). This development came on the heels of a declaration of State of Emergency in some parts of the Northern Region on December 31 after weeks of terrorism and sporadic bomb blasts mainly in churches and other public spaces.