Before being nominated for a position on the FIA Council it is important to realise that, following a successful election at an AGM, each Council member not only has to provide new ideas but also has to:
- deliver on those ideas;
- attend Council meetings to discuss and help implement the ideas of others.
Similarly it is important for the employer of the electee to be fully supportive if the election is successful. Over the recent years the latter situation has been further complicated by Council members leaving one member company and joining another. It is not always clear that their new employers fully understand the responsibilities which are tied in with employing an FIA Council member.
This page is provided as a reminder of those responsibilities. The factors highlighted should be taken into account when nominations for FIA Council are made.
Item 18.7 of the Articles of Association of the Fibreoptic Industry Association Limited states that “nominees for Council membership shall be proposed and seconded by other members”. This should not be confused with the fact that the FIA member employer has to support the nomination in terms of resource. Therefore, it may be worthwhile recalling what the minimum commitments actually are.
An FIA Council Member has a duty to attend Council meetings (typically these are held bi-monthly). The employer needs to allow the employee appropriate time to attend the meetings. In response the FIA are happy to pay appropriate expenses to the member – removing that financial load from the employer – although we are grateful that so many employers do not take advantage of this option since it keeps funds in the FIA.
The general rule, contained in Item 12 in the Articles of Association of the Fibreoptic Industry Association Limited, is that if a member fails to attend 3 consecutive meetings in 9 months he/she can be disqualified in order to allow another more committed person to take up the role.
It is also normal for an FIA Council member to be allocated a specific sector responsibility which may incur additional time. Employers should be made aware of such additional tasks as may be required and shall commit on the employees behalf to support the additional resource required. If this does not occur then FIA plans can be severely impacted, which in the long term affects the viability of the FIA.