The Essential Directorship Masterclass

"Achieving Excellence at Board Level"


Attention new and aspiring directors -
and those who advise them

Richard Winfield

Creator of The Directors' Academy

Welcome to my signature programme.


It is based on my experience facilitating and training boards of directors internationally. It is continually tested and updated to reflect the latest regulations and developments.

The Essential Directorship Masterclass

Three years after developing a Directorship Excellence Masterclass for a client in Dubai, publishing three editions in book form - for New Directors, AIM Directors and NEDS


 . . . and further testing the material internationally,


I have now created my ‘signature’ video programme: “The Essential Directorship Masterclass”.


More than forty short videos, a comprehensively illustrated workbook, and valuable support materials.


This multi-media programme introduces you to the roles, responsibilities and risks you need to be aware of as a director, as well as providing you with the essential tools to help you in your career.


And it explains how to protect yourself in case things go wrong.


You can watch the whole programme – and then return to individual modules to revise and review.


It could be just what you need to bring yourself up to speed quickly.

This continually expanding set of 40+ videos is accompanied by a comprehensive A4 bound workbook that is also available for you to down load.


Study the programme in your own time and then refer to individual modules when you need to revise your knowledge or prepare for a particular event.

Modular programme includes:


1. Introduction

  • Why become a director?

2. Directors and boards

  • What is a company
  • Board structure
  • Types of director
  • Committees
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • The non-executive director
  • Building a better board

3. Corporate governance


  • History of corporate governance
  • Corporate governance for smaller companies
  • UK Corporate governance codes
  • Reporting regulations
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Board performance and director evaluation
  • Best practice

4. Performing as a director

  • Exposure to risk
  • Before you accept a directorship
  • Becoming a director
  • Practical challenges
  • Legal duties of a director


5. Effective meetings

  • Meetings
  • Chairmanship
  • Role of the company secretary


6. Company finance

  • Sources of finance
  • Financial control measures


7. Strategy

  • Strategy planning
  • Performance measures
  • Managing risk
  • Investment risk
  • Corruption


8. Relations with stakeholders

  • Communication with stakeholders
  • Statutory requirements

Becoming a director

To join a board of directors is a great honour. But, as you and I know, it involves responsibilities and exposes you to risks.


As you might already have discovered for yourself, there is a big difference between being a senior manager and a member of a board.


And many directors struggle with this.


It takes time to learn on the job.


Joining a board for the first time can be a big step. It requires a different mindset, new skills, a new identity and changed relationships.


Suddenly, you can be exposed to new language, new ideas and new assumptions; some things not taught even on MBA courses.


That’s why


I have committed myself to helping new directors and boards become more effective, more quickly with less risk – starting with workshops and books before launching my signature video programme.


The challenge of time


I recognise that, for a busy executive like you, keeping up to date can be a chore if it requires setting aside extensive special study times. And it can be counterproductive to try to absorb too much information all at once.


And yet, for directors, it is essential that you are able to continually keep up to date and develop your knowledge and skills.


Research shows that reading books is still the favoured means of gaining knowledge for directors – and as an established author in this field I shall be writing more books for directors.




as an avid reader myself, I know that it is a challenge to find the time to work through a book – however important I know it to be.

I also recognise that for many directors English might not be your first language.


That’s why I have created this video series.


Let me tell you my story


I have been a management consultant for a long, long time. And before that I was a transportation planner.


In fact, I’ve had many careers – basically one every decade.




There has been a consistent thread through them all.

  • I am a systems thinker – I love understanding and developing systems


  • I love helping people evolve and develop
  • That’s how I was chosen to develop the world’s first bus location system
  • How I received three awards as a public transport planner
  • Why I helped several organisations become the first in their field to achieve the Investors in People Award
  • Why I invented ‘Invisible Coaching® - the art of natural coaching’, and developed training programmes for professional coaches
  • Why I have been asked to facilitate and deliver corporate governance and strategy workshops for companies around the world.

And . . .


It is why I have been so enthusiastic for Corporate Governance.


Corporate Governance as defined by the OECD and in the many national corporate governance codes that I have studied is a system for best practice at board level.


Experience has shown that organisations that adopt corporate governance practice are more successful than those that don’t.

Increasingly, investors, customers and suppliers look for evidence of good corporate governance before dealing with companies.


And good governance is the basis for making your role more effective – with less risk and less stress.


Why do I work with directors and boards?

When Willie Sutton was asked why he robbed banks, he replied “I rob banks because that’s where the money is.”


Well I work with directors and boards because that’s where the leverage is.


If I can help improve board performance, then there will be benefits throughout the company – and to society.


The New Directors Handbook


One of my skills is to create training materials. I love developing ideas, I enjoy writing and I revel in the visual design process. I have produced the CorporateCoach newsletter for over a decade and written several books on coaching.


One of my desires was to write a book on corporate governance.


It was to be my magnum opus – but I seemed never to have time to get started.


Then I was commissioned to create a ‘Directorship Excellence Masterclass’ for a client in Dubai. I was delighted to do this, but it was not until several months later when I was talking to a colleague that I realised that here was the basis for my book and, later, for a video programme.


The first step was to develop the workbook into The New Directors Handbook and then expand it into The AIM Directors Handbook and The NED Directors Handbook.


These Directors Handbooks are both an introduction and a reference source for practising directors.


They introduce you to the role, responsibilities and risks you need to be aware of as a director, as well as providing you with the essential tools to help you in your career.


And they explain how to protect yourself
​in case things go wrong


They provide you with a comprehensive and essential foundation for your career as a director.


Since then . . .


I have been able to further test the content in more workshops and masterclasses across the world.


And now, I have been able to bring the content and presentations together into the 40+ video programme that I am offering to you today.


The Coffee Time Test


Early in my career when I was a transportation planner I used to receive a continual supply of technical magazines. When one arrived, I would look through it at coffee time and read the most important article, then put it into my in-tray – never to be touched again.


I learned a valuable lesson.


There is always time for study if there is an external stimulus and it can be done over a coffee or when travelling to or from work.

But if not, it might never happen.


Hence . . .


The Directors’ Academy


The Directors’ Academy is a dedicated portal for directors that provides you with courses, resources and events so you can be more confident, more effective – with less risk.


It passes the coffee time test.


I have designed its multi-media products in chunks of no more than 20 minutes – so they can be consumed while you take a coffee break, or listened to in the car or on the train. And with audio, visual and print components, they appeal to all learning styles.


It features:

  • Small chunks: Designed in small chunks so that you can learn over a cup of coffee or when travelling to or from work.
  • Multi-media: Available as multi-media, in print, audio and video formats so that they appeal to any learning style.
  • Timed delivery: Delivered on a regular basis, so that you are repeatedly reminded to keep learning.


The Essential Directorship Masterclass video programme is my signature product. It is priced at £995 – or you can make three monthly payments of £395.


Internationally tested

As you may now be aware, I’ve been working with directors for many years, so I’ve been able to test and develop the content included in this programme in masterclasses for new and existing boards around the world.


That’s right, it’s been tested internationally!


So, you can be sure it addresses your essential needs and the practical challenges of real directors like you.


It provides you with a comprehensive foundation for a career as a director.


What you get

The Essential Directorship Masterclass is a 40+ module multi-media programme covering the skills and knowledge required to provide you with the comprehensive foundation needed to become a successful and effective director.



The continually expanding set of more than 40 videos is accompanied by a comprehensive A4 bound workbook delivered to you by post – although you will also be able to obtain a PDF copy immediately on purchase.


You get access to the videos. You can watch them individually or you can do a ‘Netflix’ and work through them in bulk.


And, of course, you can access them again later to revise individual subjects when needed.


You get the workbook sent to you by post.


1. Video content


The 40+ videos are as follows:

  • Introduction to the programme – 4 videos
  • Directors and boards – 7 videos
  • Corporate governance – 12 videos
  • Performing as a director – 6 videos
  • Effective meetings – 3 videos
  • Company finance – 2 videos
  • Strategy – 5 videos
  • Relationship with stakeholders – 2 videos

You are probably aware that significant changes to the UK Corporate Governance regime were introduced in January 2019.


These affect both large and small companies in the UK.


Changes and developments like these are added to the programme as they arise.


In addition, you will be invited to my webinars to update you on the latest developments.


2. Private Linkedin Group

As a purchaser of the Essential Directorship Masterclass you’ll get privilege membership of the private LinkedIn group where you can discuss your progress and any other business issues with other members.


3. Swipe Files

You also get access to my swipe files - built up over 30 years - for directors, boards and governance.


So, what’s the deal?


You could, of course sign up for the Institute of Directors’ Chartered Director Certificate in Company Direction, which I recommend.


But it will set you back more than £10,000.


You could attend some of the excellent NEDonBoard one day specialist workshops, which I also recommend.


But they will cost you more than £800 – each.


You could attend a one-day workshop on a chosen subject by a general-purpose training company. But even these will cost you more than £300 each.


Or, of course . . .


You can subscribe to a 90-day multi-media programme personally curated by me – with full personal support and guidance.


And you never need to leave your home or office:

  • study in your own time
  • no travel
  • no accommodation costs


  • you can revisit the programme at any time

Here it is


The Essential Directorship Masterclass is priced at £995 - or you can make three monthly payments of £395.



Money Back Guarantee

When you purchase any product or programme from us you will be expected to pay in advance, but if within the first 60 days you decide it is not for you, let us know, return the materials and we'll arrange a full refund.

These products are the result of many years helping directors and boards become more effective.


They incorporate best practice and regulation from around the world.

  • How to be an effective director
  • How to perform at board level and
  • How to apply good corporate governance.

No sweat . . .


But lots of my time, energy and passion have gone into their development.


I hope you will get great value from it.


And help me in my mission to improve board performance.

Becoming a director

Appointment as a director can be a natural stage in your career development and an exceedingly rewarding activity.


To become a director is a great honour; the owners of a company have charged you with stewardship for its future; for its financial success, of course, but also for effective, ethical and strategic leadership, for sustainable economic, social and environmental performance and for engagement with a wide range of stakeholders.


Joining a board of directors enables you to make an enhanced contribution to the success of the organisation.


But it also involves responsibilities and risks.


Being a director requires a different mindset, new skills, a new identity and changed relationships.


Whether you are already a director or aspire to become one, my intention in inviting you to join me on this journey is to enable you to become more confident, more effective, more quickly, with the knowledge and tools to become an excellent director, making a difference to the companies whose boards you join.




Would you like to get early access to the comprehensive multi-media course “Essential Directorship Masterclass” – and and become more confident, more effective, more quickly?

Are you ready to make a decision now?


I look forward to welcoming you to a small elite group of thought leaders and early adopters.


My vision is of directors providing strategic, moral and ethical leadership to transform the world’s economy.


Will you join me?


Best wishes

Richard Winfield
The Independent Authority on Director Development


"I help new directors and boards become more confident, 
more effective, with less stress."


PS: No Risk!

If within the first 60 days you decide it is not for you, let me know, return the materials and we'll arrange a full refund.


PPS: Bulk Discount


Ask us about discounts if you purchase this programme for all members of your board.

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