COVID Strengthens Activity of Boards of Directors

SustainabilityBoard and CEO Advisory
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11月 05, 2021
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SustainabilityBoard and CEO Advisory
Executive Summary
Fewer board members have been appointed amidst the pandemic, but they have more responsibilities, as companies promote sustainability committees.
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Excerpt from article originally published in Expansión by A. Medina

Expansión quotes Ramón Gómez de Olea on the pandemic's effect on board members.

This year, fewer new board members were appointed compared to 2019 and 2020.  

Fewer board members have been appointed amidst the pandemic, but they have more responsibilities, as companies promote sustainability committees. 
… 

"The Road To Corporate Governance: Spanish Listed Companies," a study published by the executive recruiting firm Russell Reynolds, analysed data available up to June of this year on board members from the Ibex and the Madrid Stock Exchange (Índice General de la Bolsa de Madrid, IGBM). 

The analysis shows that fewer board members were newly appointed this year compared to 2019 and 2020 (the number of women is lower than that of men), and that public listed companies – which have more financial expenses – preferred to redistribute roles among some of their board members to increase the efficiency of the administrative body. At the same time, to adapt to the changes, boards are creating more committees – depending on the body – with new responsibilities for their members. While nearly 15 new committees were created in 2020, this year the number is over 20. As part of this adaptation process, public listed companies have created committees for ethics and compliance, investments, human resources, health and safety, or even dermatology. 

“There are more and more committees and responsibilities being redistributed among board members. This will require either the size of the boards to increase or for board members to reduce the number of boards in which they participate,” says Ramón Gómez de Olea, Managing Director of Russell Reynolds Spain and member of the firm's global executive committee. 

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