iNED Briefing: Culture and D&I - The role of the iNED


At a time of great change for all firms, and when the regulator is also undergoing its own Transformation Programme, now is a good time to consider the importance of a healthy and inclusive culture.

When the FCA extended the SM&CR to solo regulated firms it did not apply the prescribed responsibility for culture to any one individual as it had done with Banks as culture was the responsibility of everyone- everyone was accountable. The FCA has been on a journey with the application of SM&CR. As Mark Steward said in his speech in April this year, the message has shifted from ‘tone from the top’ (necessary for setting the parameters, the expectations and the examples - the Senior Manager Regime), to ‘tone from above’ (the example set by one’s immediate line manager - the Certification Regime and process), to ‘tone from within’ (relating to every person in the organisation encouraging personal accountability - the application of the Conduct Rules). While tone from the top remains an important element, an individual’s internal compass is also key.

Healthy and inclusive cultures don’t just happen. We will consider the important role iNEDs play within a firm’s culture and at the board, as well as the expectations of the role, including within the context of the Senior Management and Certification Regime (SM&CR). We will also look to capture the importance of diversity and inclusion (D&I), a topic we are aware is important to the regulator, as seen through the recent publication of DP21/2.

As well as a Keynote from the FCA, we will facilitate a panel session to consider the regulators expectations of the role of the iNED, practical ways of achieving greater D&I on boards, helping to reduce the risk of groupthink, and any lessons that can be learnt from other sectors.

There is no one size fits all approach that works for all firms but the webinar will provide an opportunity to learn from others and generate debate. The aim of the event is to provide an overview of the obligations and expectations of iNEDs generally and specially for iNEDs on AFM boards when it comes to culture within the firm and at the board.

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