Corporate governance in the broadest sense of the word really means the policy, by which an institution is run. In its function it can be compared to the Magna Carta or the Declaration of Independence – it articulates principles and beliefs that govern the actions of an organisation. Based on a principle decision, corporate governance determines the direction and shape of the overall management of an organisation. It determines which interests are paramount when managing an organisation (be that the concept of shareholder value, stakeholder value or customer value) – however, only managing an organisation according to the concept of customer value really offers a sound basis for a sustainable and viable organisational development. Corporate governance also decides the make-up and interactions within the functions of top management (governance and executive functions).

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