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Thursday, December 08, 2005

Do You Support Canada's Current Board of Directors?

I’ve heard the comment that you can’t run a Country or a Province like a business. People’s lives and futures are at stake, there are social issues that need to be addressed and there are wants and needs that can’t be denied. These are indeed facts, but never the less, a government is, in essence, intended to manage and ensure that the best results are delivered for the Country. In this way running a Country can be equated to running a business.

As the people supplying the funds to run this country, through our taxes, we are in essence the company’s shareholders. We have an elected government that can be considered our board of directors. Each department in this government is much like the divisions or departments within a company. We have the Departments of Health, Defense, Finance, Industry, Natural Resources, etc and since we all ultimately work to build and grow this Country, we are not only its stock holders, but its employees as well.

If we consider Canada to be our business and every man, woman and child in Canada as both employees of this company and as the company’s stock holders, it may provide us with the ability to view our current situation with a little less passion and a lot more clarity.

As things stand, our company will be holding its AGM on January 23 rd. At that time we as stock holders will all be asked to review the performance of the current board of directors and decide whether or not they should be replaced.

You will need to ask yourself some very honest questions if you seriously want your company to grow and prosper.

Do you believe the current board has and continues to take your company in a direction you want it to go?

Are you receiving the sort of dividends that you believe you should from your investment in this company?

Do you have trust in your board of directors after it has been shown to have misappropriated millions of your investment dollars and perhaps even been involved in illegal financial activities?

Do you believe that your current Chief Executive Officer, who was the company’s Chief Financial Officer while many of the misdeeds took place, knew nothing about them?

If you don’t believe it, can you now trust him enough to allow him to remain in control of your company?

If you do believe it, then you need to ask yourself if he is fit to run your company when he couldn’t control its finances in the past?

Do you believe the kind of pre-vote spending undertaken by the current board just prior to this AGM was in the best interest of your company or merely a self serving attempt to curry favor with you as a stock holder?

From an employee perspective, do you believe the company’s current health and retirement plans are solvent, efficient and generous enough under current management to meet your family’s needs? In other words, do you think enough has been done by this board to maintain and improve your employee benefits?

Do you feel that your company is responsive to your family’s needs regarding child care, elder care or a myriad of other benefits issues?

After asking yourself these and other questions you may decide that the status quo is just fine, or you may not. Either way, the exercise of separating emotion from your decision and instead taking a long hard look at your Country from a purely business led perspective may help you see the direction you want to take.

We all have a major investment in this Country/company of Canada. Our income tax, sales tax, EI payments and CPP/QPP payments have all been invested in this company for many years. In fact, it is undoubtedly the single biggest investment many of us will ever make in our lifetimes. The AGM is only a few weeks away. This might be a good time, as company owners, to start thinking about how we plan to vote and who we want to run our business.

3 comments:

Patriot said...

Update:

On Monday I sent all three major federal parties a request for the email addresses of their candidates so I could pose some questions to them as a concerned voter. The only party that has even bothered to respond to my request so far are the NDP and unfortunately at the time of the response they only had one candidate running in the province.

Take that for what it is worth in speaking to how concerned the parties are about our issues.

Patriot said...

In light of the Portnoy situation I could also ask if we are happy with the way employees of our company are fired without a reasonable reason.

crazy american said...

Steve here.

I noticed from one of the other sites that there are a number of ridings with a single candidate is actually running. Sounds kind of like here in the US. A great degree of news coverage about how things are going to change but in reality only about 15 to 20% of the Congressional seats are really up to voters to decide. Even where there are multiple candidates, in a lot of cases there is only a token opposition.

But, in most cases, the "active" grass roots folks are really relatively few, and with just a little effort, you can get someone running as a "token" at least. And once they are listed, the opportunity to present and defend alternative positions actually begins.

If you are really unhappy with the current board of directors, you have to provide an alternative and you have to get a message out.

Just something to think about. BTW.. I did this once.. spent total of $300 dollars on campaign, ended up getting elected to school board for city larger than Saint John's.. just something to chew on.