Is your board crisis ready?

At the recent Kerridge & Partners Leadership Conference, Andrew Grant from McKinsey talked of a world where there is going to be a greater number of dislocations, sudden changes in input pricing, market dynamics, exchange rates and other key contextual metrics each of which can lead to major challenges for an organisation.

In his address, Richard Suhr from EY challenged boards to consider how “crisis ready” they were.  Specifically how many Board Directors have experience leading an organisation through a period of crisis.

The question of diversity on boards is commonly seen through the eyes of gender.  And we certainly believe this is a very useful thing to consider, supported by the vast body of research.

Equally Richard’s challenge is very pertinent. Governing in a steady-state is easy. What is hard is governing in unpredictable times, “mountain weather” as Richard calls it. That is when you really need a board.

How many boards conduct simulations of major disasters be they environmental, system failure, major customer or partner failure and so on? How many boards have no-one with genuine crisis experience?

Peter Kerridge

Board room meeting