Five takeaways from 2021
- Governance came into the spotlight with scandals in all sectors in 2021. The reasons are manifold, but incompetent directors and boards are at the heart of all scandals.
- 2021 was the year ESG became a very well-known concept. Environmental, Social and Governance rose to the top of board agendas. Why did ESG take centre stage in 2021?
- In 2021, we saw some progress in the push for more inclusive boards. The traditional look and feel of boardrooms seem to be waning. However, more needs to be done.
- In 2021, we saw significant strategic board appointments and changes at the top of some major organisations. CEOs have felt the pandemic pressure as big investment funds increase their scrutiny of the world’s most influential boards.
- With over 300 students taking the Diploma in Corporate Governance this year, the appetite for good governance is there. Quality director education has become more accessible.
Five predictions for 2022
- Political risk and uncertainty (including war) will be a concern for boards worldwide. The spectre of war is with us again. The global order is shifting. Also, fake news and misinformation will continue to drive enormous political upheavals, particularly in the US and the UK.
- Growing regulatory scrutiny and cost inflation are issues concerning boards. There is a need to get the balance of risk reporting and compliance right. Boards will come under increased scrutiny, particularly on accountability, transparency, and inclusion and diversity. Industry needs to talk to the regulators to get this right, and inflation will impact many businesses.
- Cybersecurity and digital transformation remain a priority for boards. Cyber threats have never been so real and worrying. For organisations, it’s a question of when, not if, they’ll be attacked. Covid has impacted business models, and if organisations do not react to the new environment, they may be in trouble. Strategic skills at the board level are critical, and organisational agility will be vital.
- ESG will challenge many boards and be a game-changer. The E and the S will broaden a board’s responsibilities like never before and require new skills at the executive and board levels. Indeed many board members do not know what ESG stands for. Companies that take ESG seriously will attract and retain staff who care and will have better commercial partnerships.
- Director skills – particularly soft skills, will be much more in-demand. Directors with good self-awareness, emotional intelligence, low egos, and strong communication skills are required at the board level.
Over 5,000 people from 75 countries attended the Corporate Governance Institute’s Lunch & Learn series in 2021. Thank you all for your valued participation.
In this webinar, David W Duffy, CEO of the Corporate Governance Institute and Delphine Joyeux, membership manager of the Corporate Governance Institute, discuss the year that was and examine what’s on the horizon for 2022.
David shares his thoughts and explores some of the most critical agenda items facing business leaders and their boards in the coming year.
David W Duffy is the founder & CEO of the Corporate Governance Institute, an experienced board member, governance consultant and Ireland’s leading author on corporate governance. His last two books are “A Practical Guide to Corporate Governance” and “A Practical Guide for Company Directors”. David is considered an innovator in governance research and engagement and is an authority for all things board-related in Ireland and across Europe.