Fortune 500 powerhouse, PwC, recently released the results from its annual Corporate Directors Survey. The assessment, which can be viewed here, offers a great deal of insight into how board priorities have shifted in recent years.
PwC also made it clear that they were interested in tracking a particular recent trend. In the report they explain, “We structured PwC’s 2015 Annual Corporate Directors Survey to gauge director sentiment on whether their boards have oriented themselves toward a longer-term governance focus in light of short-termism.”
They further explain the dichotomy between short term and long term focus by saying, “Most companies are looking down the road, focused on ‘enhancing long-term shareholder value.’
Yet they are simultaneously preoccupied with a need to look in the rear-view mirror and meet the short-term expectations of investors in the form of quarterly earnings.” The report is well worth the full read, but here are some highlights:
- Corporate directors continue to rank financial expertise, industry experience, and operational expertise as the three most desirable attributes for board members.
- Female board members continue to place importance on the development of board diversity at rates higher than their male counterparts (63% vs. 35% saying board diversity is “very important”).
- Directors are overall more engaged with IT issues—with 83% saying their board is at least moderately engaged in overseeing/understanding the risks of cyber attacks.