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Excellence in the Boardroom: Best Practices in Corporate Directorship Hardcover – April 1, 2002

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (April 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047083160X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470831601
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,339,810 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"After over thirty-five years on more than fifty boards, Bill Dimma has informed opinions on most issues that any director will ever face??? and he states them straightforwardly. Anyone who is, or hopes to be, a director can benefit immensely from reading this delightful, well-written book."
??? James Gillies, Professor Emeritus, Schulich School of Business, York University, and Author of Boardroom Renaissance: Power, Morality and Performance in the Modern Corporation

"This is the kind of book that every CEO and Chairman of a Board should read. It's refreshing material from someone with a great deal of experience. Bill Dimma writes in a very clear manner and presents invaluable advice and insights from many perspectives."
??? Larry Tapp, Dean, Richard Ivey School of Business, The University of Western Ontario

"Bill Dimma's insight into what modern board governance is all about sparkles with intelligence, wisdom, and a healthy dose of common sense. This practical book should be required reading for all directors."
??? Elaine Minacs, President & CEO, Minacs Worldwide Inc.

"This is an easy-to-read, well-written book. It will be invaluable to those who want to learn about, or increase their knowledge of, corporate governance. Teachers of the subject will find the book most helpful."
??? Purdy Crawford, Chairman, AT&T Canada, and Counsel, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt

"Bill Dimma dares to open the boardroom door to show us governance in action, commenting with clarity and humour! He engages the veteran director while informing a broader audience about the challenges of the boardroom."
??? Gail Cook-Bennett, Chairperson, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

"Bill Dimma, with his forty years experience of directorship, has explored the most pressing governance issues in today's complex business environment in an invaluable resource book. This is a must-read for current and future directors."??

???Jack L. Cockwell, Co-Chairman, Brascan Corporation

"Written by an experienced practitioner and long-term advocate of good corporate governance, Bill Dimma's Excellence in the Boardroom is a proctical, sensible, pragmatic collection of observations and comments on the many facets of this important topic."

???Lynton Wilson, Chairman of the Board, Nortel Networks Corporation

"Excellence in the Boardroom presents the insider's view on successful corporate directorship. In combining extensive coverage on key issues in board governance with insightful, first-hand reflections, Bill Dimma gives us powerful knowledge with practical sense."

???C. Douglas Caldwell, Chairman, The Coldwell Parners

"As a fellow director, I have observed Bill Dimma's knowledge of, and didication to, the art of corporate governance.??He has created a wonderful, comprehensive reference book base on a lifetime of experience."

???Richard F. Haskayne, Chairman,

TransCanada Pipelines and Fording Inc.

"Guided by his extensive experience. Bill Dimma provides excellent insight into how corporate boards and directors should function."

???Richard M. Thomson, Retired Chairman and CEO,

Toronto-Dominion Bank

"Excelllence in the Boardroom is a common sense treatise on governance founded on Bill Dimma's exceptional breadth and depth of personal experience on corporate boards."

???Dr. John Evancs, Board Chairman, Torstart Corporation

"Bill Dimma has an extraordinary ability to distill general teachings from his wide practical experience. And he is couteous to his reader???his writing is engaging and well organized. There is much current literature on corporate governance, but this book adds a different and valuable perspective."

???James C. Baillie, Counsel, Torys LLP

"This is an interesting, and at times provocative, analysis of corporate governance practices from a seasoned and thoughtful board leader. Bill Dimma's experience has led him to form strong views on how boardrooms should operate to support the creation of value for shareholders. He tacleds all the tough issues."

???JalynH. Bennett, C.M., President,

Jalynn H. Bennett & Associates Ltd

"Recent events have shown that Bill Dimma is right when he argues that good corporate governance matters and is crucial for good

From the Inside Flap


What goes on behind the closed doors of corporate boardrooms is a mystery to most of us. In a complex and volatile business environment where news of corporate disasters is all too commonplace, shareholders, the media, and the general public are increasingly asking, "Where were the directors?"

Directorship may be more of an art than a science, but good boards really matter and do make a difference to corporate performance. Better boards make stronger companies. But what role do directors really play, what should they be doing, and what constitutes good corporate governance?

Bill Dimma draws on his vast experience as a director to shed light into the insufficiently lit boardroom of the business world. Excellence in the Boardroom assembles the collected wisdom and best practices of his distinguished forty-year career, serving on more than fifty corporate boards and another forty not-for-profit boards.

Excellence in the Boardroom offers a uniquely first-hand perspective on how boards actually operate and how they should function. It explores the causes and components of good governance, and examines the key issues and controversies that boards generally have to face:

  • Corporate responsibility and accountability
  • Relationships of board and management, and of the Chairman and CEO
  • Executive and director compensation
  • Succession planning
  • Assessing performance of individual directors
  • Working with pension fund management and with institutional investors
  • The role of advisory boards
Refreshing, engaging, and practical, Excellence in the Boardroom offers views and opinions from a veteran director on what works and what doesn't in real board situations. These lively and prescriptive tales from the corporate boardroom offer a wealth of knowledge and advice to current and future directors everywhere. 

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By BusinessBookMindMap_com on February 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I work for a book summary company. One of the books selected for summary is this book.

Coming close on the heels of the Enron disaster, this book indeed highlights the need for correction in the board room practices. The book makes a strong case for enacting sound policies of ethical corporate governance and ensuring shareholders' interest. With a vast experience accumulated over the years behind him, Dimma uses his actual experience and observations to reveal how the boards function, and the crucial issues and controversies that boards face. Putting his weight behind the need for separating the posts of CEO and Chairman, Dimma goes on to tackle other vital aspects that fall within the purview of the board. Thus you will find the book covers in detail on the effective ways of board governance, executive director compensation, CEO succession planning, proper evaluation of the board and directors, pension fund management, advisory boards and the encroaching role of institutional investors. For people who are not privy to the happening behind the board, this book throws open the door to offers his perspectives on how and why the board of directors have failed in their responsibilities to evolve proper corporate governance, the need for striking the right relationship between management and the board of directors and the useful processes that can be adopted to make the board function morally and effectively. Indeed the many issues that he discusses are of immense value that companies must address. In the aftermath of the disgraceful exit of Enron, Worldcom, Tyco and many others, whose unethical corporate culture saw the complete erosion of shareholders' interest, this book is indeed valuable for the many invaluable advice and issues it takes up.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli HALL OF FAME on November 5, 2002
Format: Hardcover
That creaking sound you hear is Bill Dimma closing the barn door after Enron already got out. Dimma sounds a late, but nevertheless critical, wakeup call for U.S. corporations: They must institute policies of sound corporate governance at the board of directors level if they are to succeed and survive. About 80% of Fortune 500 companies combine the roles of chairman of the board and CEO, violating Dimma's rule number one - separate powers. We from getAbstract recommend that the management and directors of every one of these companies read Dimma's book and implement the measures that he prescribes.
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Format: Hardcover
With the recent and ongoing exposure of companies intent on deceiving their shareholders, the focus again turns on the practices of the Corporate Directorship. While in the current limelight, the role of Boards, their attentiveness and effectiveness in representing shareholder interests has been debated over many years. 'Excellence in the Boardroom' is a well-written book providing the practical and well founded opinions of William Dimma who draws on his actual experience serving on the Boards of over 50 companies. His experience provides such interesting insights which are way and above beyond the reach of the profusion of Academic articles suddenly appearing. The book is a valuable size-up of the criteria which make for active and involved Boards of Directors who truly represent the interests of the shareholders. Mr Dimma augments his board experiences with his practical knowledge of actually leading a number of businesses as the CEO.
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