At our Monday evening meeting club members were entertained by Brian Dyke.
Leaving school relatively early, Brian began work at NZ Post whereas luck would have it he was mentored and supported and soon found himself at university. By 1972, after a brief stint as Private Secretary to Roger Douglas it was into the new and growing area of merchant banking where he worked with the Chase Manhattan Bank, Broadbank and Marac Finance.  
“Masters of the universe” in a finance industry and stock market, subsequently described as the wild west, leading of course to the stock market crash which as Brian explained, New Zealand suffered more than other countries. 
From finance to “head hunting”, more politely described as executive personnel recruitment, was the next career move. Brian focused on three main aspects of that industry. The first was the very high fees that consulting companies could charge and how that was often reflected in premises and the trappings that go with that.  
Secondly those fees aligned to the notion that “no one ever got fired for buying IBM” meant that candidate searches were expensive and often led to the appointment of overseas candidates, an approach experience has subsequently shown not always to be a wise strategy.  
Thirdly Brian explained that while giving the client companies a strong shortlist, often with one candidate who was outside the brief that the company had originally proposed, it was so very important to treat all candidates with respect.
Finally, when talking about the selection of board members, Brian outlined the trend in New Zealand for people to be on many more boards than is the international benchmark. That was explained by relatively low directors’ fees and something of an old boys’ club. He gave the example of a recent board of a very large and high-profile company which had a board comprising 5 lawyers and 3 accountants and not one member with any background in the industry or associated industries the company was serving.