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Characteristics of a director for Tourism Australia - Expert Assignment Help

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Question

Assessment Task 1

Case Material:
'MANTRA boss Bob East and tourism industry leader Andrea Staines have been appointed to the board of Tourism Australia.
The appointments, announced by Federal Minister for Trade and Investment Steven Ciobo, mark the first Gold Coasters to serve on the board since its inception.

Tourism Australia aims to support the Australian economy and the growth of the tourism industry by promoting Australia as both a leisure and business events destination.

“I am confident Bob East and Andrea Staines, with their substantial knowledge and experience in the tourism sector, will contribute to the success of Tourism Australia and ensure it continues to meet the challenges posed by an increasingly competitive environment,” says Ciobo.

East has more than 20 years’ experience in the tourism industry, currently serving as the CEO of the Mantra Group.
He has helped shape Mantra Group into the second-largest, Australian-based hotel company, making it a leading accommodation provider within Australasia.

His experience also includes serving on the boards of Gold Coast Tourism, Tourism and Transport Forum, Tourism Accommodation Australia and Gold Coast Football Club. East is also Chairman of Tourism Events Queensland and Chair of the Tourism and Transport Forum’s Accommodation Sector Panel.

Meanwhile, Staines is an accomplished non-executive director with experience on a range of listed, government, private and not-for-profit companies in the infrastructure, transport, logistics and retail service arenas.

Staines is a former CEO of Australian Airlines, a Qantas subsidiary flying between Asia and Australia, which she co-launched in 2002. This role saw Staines become Australia’s first female CEO of a scheduled passenger airline.

In addition to the appointments, existing member of the board Andrew Fairley will take up the position of deputy chair for 12 months from 1 July 2016.

The new appointments are for three years, from 1 July 2016.'

Required: Assume you are employed in a management consulting firm and have expertise as a corporate governance specialist. Your client, Tourism Australian has requested you to provide a one page brief (maximum 250 words) specifying the essential criteria for a director to be appointed to the board of Tourism Australia.

The client has said; 'Make it brief, I'm too busy to read a long document. You should follow the ideas of former UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill who stated:

'To do our work, we all have to read a mass of papers. Nearly all of them are far too long. This wastes time, while energy has to be spent in looking for the essential points. I ask my colleagues and their staff to see to it that their reports are shorter. The aim should be reports which set out the main points in a series of short, crisp paragraphs…'
Winston Churchill, Memo to UK War Cabinet, 9 August 1940, During the Battle of Britain

Assessment Task 2

Part 1: Case Study

'Directors warn the buck stops with chief executives in the latest salvo in the business culture wars between government, regulators and boards.

Australian Securities Commission chairman Greg Medcraft last week said that accusations he wants to change the law to hold directors criminally liable for wayward culture are a misunderstanding and he is not pushing for changes 'at this stage'.
Tensions between directors and ASIC have escalated following the regulator's cases against Westpac Banking Corp and ANZ Banking Group and Labor's call's for a royal commission into the banking sector which have given rise to accusations the regulator is seeking to become the culture police.

Directors including Qantas Airways' Jacqueline Hey, Australia Post chairman John Stanhope and founder and director of IBIS World Phil Ruthven told an Australian Institute of Company

Directors lunch on Wednesday that while boards can 'set the right tone', the buck stops with the CEO.
'CEOs set culture not boards,' Mr Ruthven said.

Patrick Durkin 'Directors of boards warn that buck stops with CEOs' The Australian Financial Review Thursday 14 April 2016, p.8

Required: Assume you have been engaged as a corporate governance consultant to a board of directors of a public company listed on the stock exchange. Your assignment is to prepare a report to be submitted to the Chairman of the board explaining and analysing how the company should define and delineate the separate roles, duties and responsibilities of the company's board of directors from those of the CEO. Your report should contain specific recommendations on the separate roles of directors and the CEO. The Chairman has specifically indicated that she intends to make your report available to shareholders of the company and that the document will be published on the company's web site.

Part-2: Case Study

'Since detailed data on corporate governance indicators first became widely available about 25 years ago, evidence has emerged that simple top-down strategies favoring well-run companies could yield outperformance. However, probably because this effect became known to many investors, that simple approach seems to be no longer effective. None the less, we do identify some ways in which investors can still adopt strategies that may be able to take advantage of corporate governance indicators'.

Required: Assume you have been employed as a corporate governance consultant by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD). The AICD is concerned that investors do not value good corporate governance in their investment decision-making models. Your assignment is to prepare a report to be submitted to the AICD evaluating the evidence that good corporate governance is positively associated with high investor returns. In your report the AICD has asked you to make recommendations so that companies with good corporate governance practices can align these practices to maximise their investor returns.

Solution

Tourism is a business requiring the utmost proficiency in management. According to Foo L.M. (1998), directors in these companies require a lot of skills like transparency, quick decision-making etc. to meet the unpredictable environment, particularly in tourist intensive countries like Australia. Without the proper characteristics and qualities of the director, it is almost impossible for an organization to be successful. 

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Required characteristics

There are a number of characteristics, which are necessary for good corporate governance. These characteristics include:

Decisiveness: According to VD Sharma (2004) decisiveness is the most important characteristic of a director. Decision-making is required in every stage. A director takes the decision on behalf of all the stakeholders. Thus he needs to be neither optimistic nor pessimistic. He needs to use a practical approach and analyze the situation well, before making any decision.

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