Category Archives: The Boardroom

Page 1 of 212

Engaging with investors on ESG issues

Boards that proactively implement effective practices on environmental, social and governance issues have much to gain from engagement with shareholders. Those that don’t risk being held to account—by their investors and the marketplace
By Beverly Behan
October 5th, 2017

Investor-board engagement is a growing trend, with many of the world’s largest asset managers, including BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street, expanding their stewardship teams to engage more frequently with both management and boards of their investee companies. Many directors either … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

A board’s secret sauce: industry expertise

While most boards list industry expertise on their skills matrixes, what passes for “expertise” varies widely. And when it’s lacking, investors and activists see a red flag
By Beverly Behan
August 3rd, 2017

Twenty years ago, more than one-third of TSX 100 boards lacked any independent directors with experience working as executives in the industry of the company they governed. That data may seem shocking in 2017. But even today, many companies lack … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged , , , , , ,

Board chair evaluation: does the UK know best?

Good governance in Canada typically means separating the chairman and CEO roles. But that’s really just a half measure without also having an airtight process to evaluate the chair’s leadership
By Beverly Behan
May 18th, 2017

Canadian boards take pride in their long-standing practice of separating the roles of chairman and CEO. But British boards go even further—not only appointing independent non-executive chairs but also actively managing their performance. Like Canada, the UK takes a “comply … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged , , ,

The last phase of CEO succession? A new board

CEO succession and board renewal are typically seen as separate concerns. In fact, a comprehensive review of board composition—creating “Board 2.0”—is the last, best act directors can do for a new CEO
By Beverly Behan
December 15th, 2016

Good work! Your board has completed a robust CEO succession process and everyone’s confident about your choice of a new corporate leader. He/she has now spent about a year assembling an outstanding executive team and either confirming or changing the … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

The board’s role in executive talent oversight

Yes, it’s the CEO’s job to hire senior executives. But it is very much a board’s responsibility to ensure there is a continuity of talent in place to protect shareholder interests
By Beverly Behan
October 11th, 2016

Executive succession and talent development are issues that frequently fall to the bottom of board priorities—that is, until the board starts CEO succession planning in earnest and discovers that the internal pool isn’t quite what they thought or, worse yet, … Continue reading

Posted in The Boardroom | Tagged , , ,

How to use your network to get on a board

If board headhunters don’t find you, how do director-to-be hopefuls find a board? By all means tap into your network, but do your homework first
By Beverly Behan
August 1st, 2016

Only about half of board searches for public companies involve the use of headhunters. So, where does the other half find their new directors? A few go into databases at the Institute of Corporate Directors or Board Prospects—or if they’re … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

Micromanagement: the dirtiest word in governance

Make no mistake, directors and boards that micromanage can be a problem. But it’s far from cut-and-dried. There are many reasons micromanagement occurs—and circumstances where it’s warranted
By Beverly Behan
May 30th, 2016

“The board is micromanaging.” How many times have we heard this lament from CEOs, corporate executives and even board members, themselves? Essentially, it is an accusation that the board is delving into picayune details and/or making decisions that should be … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged , , , ,

Three mistakes in CEO succession planning

Your board can spend a lot of time on CEO succession and still get it wrong. Here’s a look at three big pitfalls and how to avoid them
By Beverly Behan
December 15th, 2015

CEO succession is an area where most boards feel they could raise their game. PwC’s 2015 study of nearly 800 U.S. public company directors, released in October, revealed that less than half feel their board spends sufficient time on CEO … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged , , , ,

Sharpening your director on-boarding program

Boards understand the value in recruiting great new directors, but it also takes an effective on-boarding program to make the most of their talents and to do it in the shortest possible time
By Beverly Behan
October 11th, 2015

Nearly every company has an orientation program for its new board members—and most follow the same general format: The new director meets one-on-one with a series of corporate executives over a day or two and tries to ingest as much … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged , ,

Effective board and director evaluations

Board and director evaluations used to be mostly about compliance. Today they’re about making good boards better while improving the credibility of board and director performance management. Here, an expanded recap of emerging trends and tactics
By Beverly Behan
July 27th, 2015

Now that directors have had more than a decade of experience with board evaluations, their objectives for the exercise have begun to shift. Rather than seeking a rote compliance objective, increasingly board chairs and nominating/governance committee chairs want to use … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

The No. 1 boardroom issue for 2015

Activists realized board composition was a key factor in company performance some time ago. Now it’s also moving to the forefront of voting concerns for ordinary shareholders. Translation: either your board addresses it or others will
By Beverly Behan
May 13th, 2015

Shareholder activists have long found success in running slates of candidates whose expertise and backgrounds appeared stronger and more relevant than those of the incumbent board members; CP Rail is a classic example. But now, board composition is becoming a … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , , , ,

Board offsite as shareholder activism boot camp

Instead of waiting for a shareholder activist attack, boards should use strategic retreats to look at themselves through an activist lens—and then take steps to be ready if the real thing occurs
By Beverly Behan
December 18th, 2014

Boards that find themselves in the crosshairs of a shareholder activist spend inordinate amounts of time and money developing a defensive strategy and putting it into play. Yet, by the time a shareholder activist comes knocking, it may already be … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

Hallmarks of a great board chair

Excelling as chairman of a public company board is a complicated task—but you’ll never lift your game from good to great without embracing three key attributes
By Beverly Behan
October 30th, 2014

Being chairman of the board is an honour. But it’s also an important job that can make all the difference in terms of the board’s overall effectiveness. Three things distinguish truly great board chairs—and relatively few actually step up to … Continue reading

Posted in The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

The executive’s guide to working with boards

Would-be CEOs and other senior managers can make or break their careers in presentations to boards. So take the time to learn what directors need to hear—and how they need to hear it
By Beverly Behan
August 25th, 2014

Being invited to present to the board of directors—or to work with the board on an ongoing basis—is often viewed as a hallmark of an executive career. It also has significant implications for anyone with their eye on the corner … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom, Top Stories | Tagged , , ,

CEO succession planning in the energy sector

No job is more important for a board than appointing the right chief executive officer. And nothing better serves this task than a great CEO succession plan
By Beverly Behan
June 5th, 2014

Over the past three years, I had the privilege of working with the chairman of a Fortune 500 company in the energy sector in developing one of the most progressive and rigorous CEO succession plans ever undertaken in the United … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook, The Boardroom | Tagged ,
Page 1 of 212