Governance & Employee Participation

Good governance, three-tier system

Good governance is a hot topic. Ideally, there should be close alignment and interaction in the management of a company, whereby all the interests and risks are carefully and transparently weighed against each other. Especially in relation to the interests and risks of, and for, shareholders and stakeholders: customers, employees, and the local community.

At the heart of this issue is the division of labour and the collaboration between executive directors and supervisory directors, between the executive board and the supervisory board.
In the Netherlands, there is a third tier of representation that can be used to establish a stable organisation of countervailing powers: the works council. Interaction, sharing knowledge and information, and intensive collaboration between executive board, supervisory board, and works council is still ‘uncharted territory’, but offers interesting possibilities for the future. We are always glad to share our experience with the formulation of company management structures and employee participation, and to draw up a roadmap to help guide you through this new area.

Interactive codetermination, networking codetermination

The Dutch Works Councils Act has created a unique framework for consultation between management and employees. This framework can either be used or abused, all depending on the attitude and intentions of the discussion partners.
The WissemaGroup was commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs to carry out a study into the practice of codetermination in a large number of organisations. Most of the recommendations for improvement did not concern the framework itself (the legislation), but how the framework was put into practice. We decided to call this new approach ‘Interactive Codetermination’, a strategy which we have already helped to introduce in dozens of organisations.

Social networks and other new ICT resources have radically changed the nature of collaboration and organisation. The boundaries between different organisations are becoming blurred. Clients want to co-create. It is the dawn of a new era for codetermination: networking codetermination.
This new stage of evolution promises innovative, rapid forms of involvement, the mining of knowledge both inside and outside an organisation, and a smooth interchange between strategy and tactics.