News & Events

On the 27th of February 2024, Carmichael hosted a webinar on how nonprofits can improve their annual reports and financial statements.

The panel consisted of:

  • Nina Arwitz: CEO of Volunteer Ireland
  • Aedín Morkan: Audit Partner at Mazars Ireland
  • Senan Turnbull: Consultant and trainer specialising in nonprofit annual reports

The panel was chaired by Róisín McGuigan: Services Manager at Carmichael and Coordinator of the Good Governance Awards.

The three panellists shared some of their pointers for improvement and the session finished with a Q&A.

This resource is taken from the session.

Board packs are one of the key gateways for board members into the organisation they govern. The clarity and accessibility of board packs is vital to ensuring an effective board and well-governed organisation. 

Follow the four stage plan to achieve this.

A product of a recent 30 minute panel discussion between our own CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Patrick Downes, Managing Partner at Lionheart and BoardEffect’s Director of Sales, Edward Rees generated great insights on how to increase board effectiveness in mission driven organisations. Along with the resource document, you can watch the recorded discussion here.

Governance Officer Roisin McGuigan shares a number of steps that a nonprofit can take to safeguard itself against mission drift.  Nonprofits can be in danger of mission drift, where the organisation loses sight of its core purpose, as they struggle to balance other goals such as securing funding, raising their profile or recruiting new volunteers and staff.

Carmichael podcasts are available from most podcast platforms – Acast, Apple, Spotify.

Just click on each title to listen to the podcast.

Episode 53: The Art of Chairing a Board

In this episode Diarmaid speaks with Bernie Gray, a very experienced board member and board chair who gives her insights on being an effective chair, managing key relationships, boardroom dynamics and dealing with an underperforming board member.

Click here to listen.

Episode 52: Pro Bono Legal Supports for Non-profits

Diarmaid speaks to Carolann Minnock Of Counsel at Arthur Cox who leads the pro bono practice there, about her career to date and pro bono legal supports for nonprofits.

Click here to listen.

Episode 51: How to successfully recruit Charity Trustees with Rea Walshe.

On our ever growing in size and popularity show – Diarmaid speaks with Rea Walshe, interim CEO of Boardmatch Ireland, about her career journey so far and how to successfully recruit charity trustees.

Click here to listen.

Episode 50: A Conversation with the Charity Regulator, Helen Martin.

On our 50th Podcast release we are delighted to welcome Helen Martin, the charities’ regulator, to discuss the ever changing landscape of the charity sector. She shares both her career journey and her vision for the charities landscape.

Click here to listen.

Episode 49: The evolving landscape in the charity sector with Aine Myler

Diarmaid invites Aine Myler, CEO of Charities Institute of Ireland , to chat about her career journey and the evolving landscape that is developing in the realm of Charities.

Click here to listen.

Episode 48: Sustainability in the charity and non-profit sector

An interesting discussion where Niall Fitzgerald of Charters Accountant Ireland joins our CEO Diarmaid to discuss sustainability reworking and its effects on the non-profit sector.

Click here to listen.

Episode 47: Finding and Onboarding the Right Board Members

It is very important to know what kind of person you need and want on your Board – their skillset and their attributes impact on the strength of your board. In our 47th podcast, Roisin McGuigan, Services Manager of Carmichael, joins Diarmaid, our CEO, to share her knowledge of recruiting the most suitable board members for your organisation.

Click here to listen.

Episode 46: Scaling Social Enterprise with Clodagh o Reilly

Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí invites Clodagh O Reilly to share her career development story and how she developed a career in social enterprise. She shares her views on scaling social enterprise.

Click here to listen.

Episode 45: The Power of Story Telling with Martina Quinn of Alice PR

Carmichael CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí sits with Martina Quinn from Alice PR to discuss the power of story telling and how you can empower your organisation by knowing how to share the organisation’s story.

Click here to listen.

Episode 44: The Role of Pobal in supporting Community and Voluntary Services in the last 30 years.

Anna Shakespeare (CEO of Pobal) meets our CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí to discuss how Pobal has supported the community and voluntary services over the last 30 years.

Click here to listen.

Episode 43: A vision for the sector and The Wheel from Ivan Cooper its new CEO. 

Ivan Cooper joins Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí to talk about the vision for the sector and The Wheel.

Click here to listen.

Episode 42: 50 years of Coolmine with Pauline McKeown

A topic that may be close to the heart. Pauline McKeown joins Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí discussing how Coolmine has grown over 50 years, sharing experiences, and the types of supports offered by Coolmine.

Click here to listen.

Episode 41: Environment, Social and Governance with Rhea Albuquerque

Rhea Albuquerque from the Corporate Governance Institute,  speaks with Diarmaid about how Environmental, Social and Governance elements work alongside each other in organisations, for example more and more it comes up on the board agenda.

Click here to listen.

Episode 40: The Future of the Boardroom with Mark Wilson

Have you ever wondered about the future of your Boardroom? Let’s find out what to expect with BoardEffect’s Mark Wilson joining our CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí.

Click here to listen.

Episode 39: Cyber Security with Eoghan Daly

Our CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí talks with Eoghan Daly, a director in BDO, about the key questions that every board member and leader should ask around the subject of Cyber Security in their organisation.

Click here to listen.

Episode 38: The Leadership Academy with Sharon Hughes

Sharon Hughes, manager of the Leadership Academy, joins Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí to discuss what leadership is and how you can enhance your leadership skills using the right resources.

Click here to listen.

Episode 37: The Art of Networking with Kingsley Aikens

“It’s not about the what, it’s not about the how, it is about the who.”

Kingsley Aikens educates us on the Art of Networking through a very informative discussion with our CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí.

Click here to listen.

Read Top 50 Networking Tips from The Networking Institute here.

Episode 36: Succession Planning with David Duffy

David Duffy, co-founder and CEO of the Corporate Governance Institute, joins Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí to dissect the area of Succession Planning and its importance for Board Governance.

Click here to listen.

Episode 35: Diversity, Equality and Inclusion.

Liz Hughes speaks with our CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí on the subject of Diversity & Inclusion with the goal to get people thinking about it in their organisations and also, encouraging these organisations to start the conversation on this very subject.

Click here to listen.

Episode 34: Anti-Money Laundering with Marian Barnard

Marian Barnard joins our CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, in a discussion on all things Anti Money Laundering and how it can play its role in the non profit sector.

Click here to listen.

Episode 33: How to Get the Best from PowerPoint Presentations

In conversation with our CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Fiona Walsh shares how to make your PowerPoint slides more engaging, allowing you to get more from your presentation. Listen here.

Episode 32: What Makes a Good Board Meeting 

Whether it is a new board, or a board that is up and running, or where there are issues running through a board, Gerry Egan talks here with our CEO Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí about how you can get the most out of a board meeting.

Episode 31: 2022 Good Governance Awards – Part Two, Announcing the Winners

It was a great evening and well done to all the winners in their various categories. Have a listen here to the announcement of the winners.

Episode 30: 2022 Good Governance Awards – Part One, Opening Speeches

Have a listen to here to the opening speeches of our very successful 2022 Good Governance Awards Ceremony.

Episode 29: Boards behaving Badly and Domineering CEOs

Fortunately, most boards and CEOs in the charity sector have positive working relationships. However, when things go wrong, they can go badly wrong. In this podcast, we explore what to do when they do and how to prevent them from going wrong.

Click here to listen

Episode 28: Thrive in the future of work: A conversation with author, Kevin Empey

In this podcast we speak to organisational change specialist and author Kevin Empey about the key trends in the world of work, the key challenges for the individual and for the organisation and what should individuals and organisations be doing to be ready and to adapt to these challenges.

Click here to listen.

Episode 27: Evaluating the Effectiveness of your Board

In this podcast Andrew Madden (Learning & Development Manager at Carmichael) and Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí (CEO of Carmichael) look at Board evaluations, why they are important for good governance, board effectiveness and succession planning, the different types of evaluations and how to conduct them.

Episode 26: The Role of Company Secretary 

Colm Hanley explains the key roles and responsibilities of the company secretary and explores the growing importance of the company secretary in ensuring that organisation’s compliance with the governance code and regulatory requirements.

Click here to listen.

Episode 25: Governing with Purpose

In our latest podcast episode, Carmichael CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, interviews Brian Cavanagh, a business coach and governance specialist, who will have his book “Governing with Purpose” published in September.

Click here to listen.

Episode 24: Cyber Security with Liam Lynch 

Cyber security is a growing risk for all organisations which can have devastating consequences. In our latest Carmichael podcast, we talk to cyber security expert Liam Lynch about what board members and managers of nonprofits should be doing to manage this risk.

Click here to listen.

Episode 23: Financial Oversight Responsibility for Boards Members

In our latest podcast episode, Carmichael CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí discusses with charity finance expert, Andrea Shupinski the important responsibility for board member in providing financial oversight and what that entails.

Click here to listen.

Episode 22: Ready and Able Post-Covid

In the latest Carmichael podcast we speak with Liam Scollan about community and voluntary organisations being “Ready and Able” for the emerging post Covid pandemic environment responding to the challenges, opportunities and innovations they are encountering.

Click here to listen.

Episode 21: When a Charity Inspector Calls

In this podcast, Carmichael’s Training Manager, Derek O’Reilly, interviews Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, CEO, about the findings and the wider sector implications of the Charity Inspector’s Report into Child Fund Ireland.

Click here to listen.

Episode 20: Chris Gordon Talks On the Evolving Landscape for Social Enterprises

Carmichael CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, talks with Chris Gordon, CEO of the Irish Social Enterprise Network, on the evolving landscape for social enterprises, opportunities and challenges.

Click here to listen.

Episode 19: Board recruitment is an ongoing requirement even during a pandemic

We talk to Eva Gurn, CEO of Boardmatch Ireland, and the valuable role they play in matching those volunteering for board roles and non-profits looking to recruit board members.

Have a listen here.

Episode 18: Three more charities rising to the Covid-19 challenge to continue delivering their supports and services

Diarmaid in conversation with three more charities based at the Carmichael Centre, about their challenges during the Covid-19 crisis. Firstly we hear from Heart Children Ireland, then The Prader Willi Syndrome Association and finally Dyspraxia DCD Ireland.

Have a listen here.

Episode 17: Creativity, Culture, Collaboration and Courage by CRC staff in response to Covid-19

Diarmaid talks with Stephanie Manahan, CEO of The Central Remedial Clinic, CRC.

Have a listen here.

Episode 16: Coping with Covid-19 – The challenge for small charities as they provide much needed services

In episode 16, we speak with 3 small charities, Look Good Feel Better, FirstLight and Huntington’s Disease Association of Ireland about their Covid-19 challenges and how they are responding to maintain services to their clients.

Listen here.

Episode 15: Michael Wickham Moriarty gives insights to Trócaire’s award winning governance culture

In conversation with Michael Wickham Moriarty, the head of Corporate Services at Trócaire. Michael gives us an insight into Trócaire’s award winning governance culture and talks about how Trócaire is coping with Covid-19. Have a listen here.

Episode 14: Leveraging Technology for Social Good

Diarmaid’s guest is Eamon Stack, the outgoing CEO of Enclude. They discuss how best to use technology for social good. Have a listen here.

Episode 13: Creating an Ethical Culture in Organisations

In episode 13, Niall Fitzgerald, Head of Ethics and Governance at Chartered Accountants Ireland joins Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, CEO of Carmichael Ireland to discuss how to create an ethical culture in organisations. Have a listen here.

Episode 12: What Makes a Good Annual Report Great

Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Carmichael CEO in conversation with Aedín Morkan, partner with Mazars’ Audit Assurance Group about making a good Annual Report even better. Listen here.

Episode 11: Developments, Opportunities and Challenges for charities

Talk with Liz Hughes CEO of Cii on ‘Developments, opportunities and challenges for charities’. Have a listen here.

Episode 10: “G.D.P.R., it hasn’t gone away”

In episode 10, we talked with Gerry Egan on “G.D.P.R., it hasn’t gone away you know”. Have a listen here.

Episode 9: “What’s Happening with Volunteering in Ireland?”

Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Carmichael CEO talks with Nina Arwitz CEO of Volunteer Ireland on “What’s happening with volunteering in Ireland?”. Episode 9 is available here.

Episode 8: Talk with Deirdre Garvey, CEO of The Wheel about her work and the challenges which face the Charity and Voluntary Sector

Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Carmichael CEO talks with Deirdre Garvey, CEO of The Wheel about her work and the challenges which face the Charity and Voluntary Sector as Election 2020 draws nearer. Episode 8 is available here.

Episode 7: 2019 Good Governance Awards The Winners

Recording of the Winners of the 2019 Good Governance Awards here.

Episode 6: 2019 Good Governance Awards Keynote Speech

Louise Thomson’s 2019 Good Governance Awards keynote speech is available here.

Episode 5: Board ethics and behaviour

In episode 5, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, Carmichael CEO, interviews Louise Thomson, Head of Policy for ICSA: The Governance Institute about Board ethics and behaviour. Listen to the full podcast here.

Episode 4: When Things Go Wrong in Charities

We really enjoyed talking to Jillian van Turnhout in our latest Carmichael podcast on the topic of ‘When Things go wrong in Charities’. This episode follows on from previous topics which looked at the Annual Report, the Charities Governance Code and Risk Management. Here’s link to this episode.

Episode 3: Risk and Risk Management

CEO, Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí and Training Officer, Andrew Madden discuss risk and risk management for non-profit organisations. Listen here.

Episode 2: The Charities Governance Code

Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, CEO, and Derek O’Reilly Training Manager, Carmichael, in conversation about the Charities Governance Code. This conversation provides practical insights into the Code and how to go about the compliance process. It touches on the challenges and pitfalls, as well as resources, supports and key dates to ensure full compliance by 2021. See full details of the Code by listening here.

Episode 1: Why is using your annual report to tell your story important for nonprofits?

Derek O’Reilly, Training Manager and Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, CEO of Carmichael, in conversation about annual reports for nonprofits. This conversation provides practical insights in what to consider when writing an annual report, including: your organisation’s purpose; strategy; risk management; financial management and outcomes. It also touches on the Good Governance Awards, and the opportunity they provide to access resources and high quality feedback on your annual reports. See full details on Click here to listen.








Cutting Edge Board Meetings

Carmichael and The Wheel held a joint event during Charity Trustees Week 2022 on the topic of Cutting Edge Board meetings and have now produced a resource Cutting Edge Boards based on the panel discussion. The conversation ranged widely among the expert panellists and much discussion centred on the fundamentals of an effective board meeting.

Read it here Cutting Edge Boards.

Click here to book one of Carmichael’s meeting rooms for an in-person or hybrid Board meeting.

Event & Webinar Recording

This resource is based on the content of a webinar held by Carmichael, in association with the Good Governance Awards, on February 9th 2023. The full recording of the event is available here.

The webinar aimed to provide tips and advice to nonprofits of all sizes on how to improve the content and narrative of their Annual Report.

The panel-led session drew on the experience and knowledge of judges and assessors from the Good Governance Awards. They outlined what is required to ensure that an Annual Report is relevant, impactful, and engaging.

The panel consisted of:

  • Aedín Morkan: Partner, Audit & Assurance, Mazars
  • Níall Fitzgerald: Head of Ethics & Governance, Chartered Accountants Ireland
  • Geraldine O’Sullivan: Manager, Kerry Volunteer Centre
  • Andrew Madden: Head of Training, Consultancy and Communications, Carmichael

The panel was chaired by Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí, CEO of Carmichael and Founder of the Good Governance Awards.

Improving Annual Report

The annual report represents a real opportunity for organisations in the charity and non-profit sector to showcase their transparency and trust by disclosing their strategic performance, governance practices, culture and financial results. A good annual report does more than meet minimum reporting requirements. It can provide a comprehensive picture of an organisation, including its achievements and future plans. It serves to reinforce relationships with stakeholders and build further relationships with the public, potential donors, volunteers and supporters.

Each of the annual reports entered into the awards undergoes a rigorous assessment process, including a technical compliance review, an assessment of governance practice disclosures and, for those short-listed, a three-stage independent judge review.

In the spirit of improving standards, we have compiled a summary of the Judges’ top recommendations arising from their review of this year’s shortlisted annual reports.

Read our Governance and Corporate Services Officer Roisin McGuigan’s article here:

Top 10 Recommendations GGA 2022

Fortunately, most boards and CEOs in the charity sector have positive working relationships. However, when things go wrong, they can go badly wrong. During the Covid pandemic, with all its stresses and strains, some relationships were tested. This was a timely reminder that good working relationships should not be taken for granted. This resource document was drawn up in response to two events organised by Carmichael and the Wheel: an online webinar in November 2021 and a facilitated panel discussion at the Wheel Summit in June 2022. Attendees at both events had many questions and observations; and expressed a need for more support and resources on this important topic. 

Here you can find a short (and by no means exhaustive) list of various organisations which may be able to help your nonprofit.