The new board game: governance, transparency and strategic planning | EY

A recent study conducted by EY revealed that 30% of female-led companies are targeting growth rates of more than 15% in the next 12 months, compared with just 5% of male-led firms

Company directors play a pivotal role in the governance of an organisation. The role is carried out primarily through the control of two key factors that ultimately determine the success of the entity: strategy planning and execution.  On the one hand, the Directors’ role in strategy planning is key - it builds the sound foundation necessary to invigorate and strengthen the organisation by focusing on long-term objectives an instilling a sense of purpose and commitment from the boardroom and across the firm. On the other hand, and in tandem with the outlined strategy, a pivotal and core responsibility of the board of directors is to provide leadership in the development and execution of the strategic plan.

This responsibility involves oversight of the strategy, which is the approval and capitalising of the plan, followed by an ongoing monitoring of the progress and results and subsequent adjusting as required.

The importance of having solid corporate governance in place will ensure that the company has the necessary structures to increase its accountability and transparency as well as to demonstrate the ability to anticipate and mitigate risks.

Board members should communicate effectively with stakeholders; develop a robust corporate reporting framework; optimise decision-making around capital allocation; identify, develop and retain the best and brightest talent and support diverse teams, not just at board level, but through all levels of the company.

Good corporate governance also entails having a board with a range of attributes. A recent study conducted by EY revealed that 30% of female-led companies are targeting growth rates of more than 15% in the next 12 months, compared with just 5% of male-led firms, even though more than half the women-led companies (52%) say they have no access to external funding. This shows that gender diversity helps to create a more robust board, capable of identifying growth opportunities and with a sense of purpose. Needless to add, gender diversity in the boardroom is not the sole key to advancement. In fact, the most beneficial equation of board diversity proves to be a mix of age, racial and gender attributes.

In this context, EY Malta, together with the 100 Women in Finance will be organising an event on 11 July at the newly refurbished EY Connect Centre in Msida. Entitled ‘The New Board Game’ the event will tackle how corporate board members are attracting more attention as they weigh in on best practices in key areas. It will also highlight how board members now view best practices in corporate governance, diversity and strategic planning, in this “board in the spotlight” era. Speakers will also address the importance of having a diverse board to explore the main challenges faced by board members of listed and unlisted companies.

‘The New Board Game’ promises to be inspiring, informative and interactive - the networking drinks following the panel discussion will add to the value of the proceedings.

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