Company Secretaries (CSs) have to make sure their companies walk the straight and the narrow when it comes to compliance with legal and regulatory matters.
What do they do?
Company Secretaries guide the boards of companies on governance issues, including shareholders’ and directors’ meetings.
They establish a link between the board and various stakeholders, dentify gaps in the company’s global governance practices and advise the board on how to upgrade. CSs also deal with mergers and acquisitions, cross-border takeovers, intellectual property rights and a company’s legal cases and arbitration.
- Good communication skills (both written and spoken English)
- Analytical and decision-making ability
- Good with numbers
- Good problem-solving skills
- Strong reasoning ability
- Should be comfortable with presentations
- Ability to work on and grasp company annual reports
- Must have a sound understanding of the global stock exchange market
- Good comprehension skills help
How do I get there?
The Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) conducts the CS programme in India. After students complete Class 12 in science or commerce or arts, excluding fine arts, they can enrol for the CS programme conducted through distance mode in three stages: Foundation (eight-month), executive and professional. Graduates in any discipline except fine arts need to do only the last two levels. After clearing the executive or professional course, one needs to complete 16 months of training in a company or under a practising CS. Those with the specified work experience can take partial or full waiver from the training. One has to then complete training in a specialised agency and a Secretarial Modular Training Programme. After the professional course and training, you can practice and also become an associate member of ICSI.
Typical day in the life of a Company Secretaries
Pros & Cons about this career
. You get a chance to rub shoulders with the company’s top management . You get exposure to various external agencies and regulators . You get a broader view of taxation, finance and general management . Salaries can be fantastic – provided you do a good job for your company
. Not many people are aware of what exactly it is that a CS does and could mistake you for a chartered accountant . This can be a very demanding job, with gruelling hours