Follow the Leader: The 2020 Chairman/Lead Director

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Leadership is crucial amid today’s rapidly changing governance landscape. This panel discussed what it takes to head a high-performance board. With boards currently facing unprecedented challenges, having the right lead director in place is critical. The right leader can guide boards as they confront new challenges and deal with their normal oversight responsibilities. It’s important for boards to focus on strategy and innovation while minding regulatory and compliance matters. It’s also important to align strategy with the right performance metrics and ensure that independent directors are fully up to speed on the company, the industry, and key competitors. As we think about where all boards should be in 2020, they should strive to achieve high-performance.

1. Boards should have an independent, strong, effective leader with the right skills. The process to select the board chair should be as rigorous as the process for selecting the CEO.

2. The chair should set the board’s vision and key objectives. Directors should be held accountable for this vision.

3. Boards should have a rigorous performance evaluation process. The process should include understanding the challenges the company is facing and aligning board skills with these areas. Directors need to ensure the composition of the board reflects fresh skills and insights, and each director should earn the right to be on the board.

Robert E. Hallagan
Vice Chairman & Managing Director, Board Leadership Services, Korn/Ferry International

John A. Krol
Chairman, Delphi Automotive; Director, Tyco International

This summary provided by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

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