UPF launches a new postgraduate course to professionalize those who hold board of director positions

The board of directors is the key element within a company’s governance system. Nowadays, it is not only IBEX 35 companies, banks and public and private organisations that require this body, but family businesses and SMEs also opt to have a board of directors made up of managers—both from within the family and outside—and professional independent directors who deal with the proper functioning of the company in the short and long term. “The directors, in both large and small companies, should be aware of the importance of assuming responsibility for this role that is entrusted to them,” explains Xavier Puig, academic co-director of the program.

New legal demands from the boards of directors reveal the need for greater professionalism in board positions. “The era where being part of a board was a glamourous job, exempt from liability and well paid, has definitely ended.” Today, the director should know how to interpret a company’s financial statements, supervise the role of executive officers from any corporation and guarantee coherent and flawlessly-ethical decision-making, as well as identify the business and social impact of these decisions,” insists Puig.

It is precisely with this objective that UPF Barcelona School of Management has launched a new postgraduate program to enable those from different backgrounds to take on responsibilities as directors in any type of institution. The Postgraduate Course in Governance of Boards of Directors is mainly taught to graduates from any discipline who are members of, or want to work as members of or consultants for, a board of directors. This face-to-face course lasts two months, half of which is taught by professional experts such as Xavier Puig, partner and director for Gesiuris, or Marcos Eguiguren, academic co-director of the program, Executive Director of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values, who has been a member of the administrative boards of various companies, among them Triodos Bank N.V., and who is currently a director of companies such as Catalunya en Miniatura. The objective of the program is to professionally train future directors so that they have a holistic view of the director’s role: from the nomination of directors, fair remuneration, shareholder interests, human elements within the dynamics of a board of directors, business management, business models, the whole economic and legal life cycles of organisations, the application of financial ratios, analytical protocols and even the preparation of a shareholder meeting. “It’s about having a global view of everything that affects a business and receiving clear training to enable you to responsibly carry out the role of director and add value to its advisory function.” The course will take place from April to June in the UPF Balmes building and enrolment is already open.