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Episode Info

Episode Info:

In this episode, we are joined by Founder and Director of the IMD Global Board CenterProf. Didier Cossin. Didier is a global expert in governance, and in addition to his role at IMD has served as a consultant to the United Nations, the European Central Bank and multiple major corporations, including HSBC, Vodafone, Schlumberger and Coca-Cola. We speak about four pillars of good board governance: people, information, structure and  processes, and group dynamics.  

What Was Covered

  • Didier’s definition of board governance as “the art of decision making at the top of organizations”
  • The particular challenge that corporations with a long history face to transform and how this requires board leadership that “breaks the internal mould, breaks bureaucracy and opens up to the world”
  • What Didier has identified as the four pillars that constitute good governance – people, information, structure and processes and group dynamics - with good and bad examples of each

Key Takeaways and Learnings

  • A good assessment of board effectiveness is the extent to which it focuses on the past compared to the future – and that most boards spent too much time looking back
  • A board must ensure it receives the proper balance of internal and external information, of formal and informal information. That the very best board packs are “synthetic” – they use a variety of tools to synthesize the information that tracks the evolution of the key metrics
  • The criticality of the difficult task of organizing a board so its committees are well structured and focused on the issues of most importance to the organization
  • How a Chairman needs have the “art” of stimulating the right discussions, ensuring all views are considered and bringing these together – and the importance of this to enabling a functioning organization

Links and Resources Mentioned in this Podcast

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