Activist proposals have long been viewed as something to resist, even fear, but a new strain of thinking has become part of the debate. Boards are now looking at activist themes to inspire their own actions – as both an offense and defense strategy.
Based on a survey of a 140 UK based respondents across Audit Committee Chairs, Board Chairs, CFOs and Audit Partners in the UK. The survey was supplemented with 21 interviews with UK Board Chairs, Audit Committee Chairs, CFOs and Audit Partners aimed at determining what characteristics are needed to lead this key Committee, what the job entails now, and crucially how an Audit Committee Chair can succeed.
Based on Egon Zehnder's published analysis, there is measured progress in diversity gains among women on Boards.
More than ever, organization leaders need committed counselors – individuals who will push them to greater heights and encourage them to pursue transformation. They need objective individuals who can advise, envision and strategize for long-term success.
Over the past year, several sizable pension funds and proxy advisory firms have taken a more aggressive stance on gender diversity in the boardroom, threatening to withhold votes or even mount an opposition slate at companies thought to be making insufficient progress on this issue.
In April 2017 Egon Zehnder brought together a notable group of General Counsels and Legal/ Compliance Heads in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing GCs in Greater China. Several themes emerged during the roundtable events—themes that are relevant to any GCs in the region.
Egon Zehnder’s Istanbul office recently convened a group of Turkey-based HR leaders from various sectors for a series of breakfast discussions focused on the importance of team building. Accompanied by the Office Leader Murat Yesildere’s presentation on “Building Highly Effective Leadership Teams”, the participants were very forthcoming creating an open dialogue where they shared their experiences and perspectives on team effectiveness.
The days when the main function of Audit Committees was to put a “stamp of approval” on companies’ financials are long gone. Heightened risk awareness and increased regulation means that Audit Committees must now take on a much more proactive role in detecting, understanding and acting on risk – be it financial, macroeconomic, regulatory, legal or cybersecurity-related.
In today’s environment, boards are expected to fulfillll their traditional oversight and compliance role and also add value through strategic insight and guidance.
Board members today must grapple with increasingly complex matters of strategy and risk. In response, many companies are rethinking board meetings to enhance alignment, energize the board and elevate its performance.