Russell Reynolds Associates Launches Board & CEO Advisory Group
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April 24, 2017
Next Generation BoardsBoard and CEO AdvisoryBoard Director and Chair Search
The Hunt Scanlon article, “Russell Reynolds Associates Launches Board & CEO Advisory Group,” looked at the launch of the firm’s Board & CEO Advisory Group. The article featured a Q&A with Justus O'Brien, Jack "Rusty" O'Kelley III and Charles Tribbett III about their roles in the new group. The article is excerpted below.
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Hunt Scanlon Media

Justus, why the need for a new division, as opposed to keeping this within the firm’s general service offering package? 

Much more is expected of boards in today’s complex and fast changing environment. This has created the opportunity for us to expand our services to include advisory work around board performance & effectiveness, CEO & board succession, and board culture & education. Growing demand for these services led us to form a new organizational structure with enhanced capabilities beyond traditional search to better serve our clients. The structure allows us to deploy dedicated advisory teams of experts, including former lawyers and management consultants with governance expertise, public and private company board directors, disruption and transformation experts, L&S experts, board effectiveness experts, and experts with deep CEO, board search and succession expertise. We have been building on existing RRA talent and hiring new talent over the past several years to respond to this demand from clients. We believe that the holistic approach offered through BCAG and our dedicated advisory teams assembled under this new structure will permit us to more effectively deliver a wider array of meaningful advisory services beyond traditional executive search. 

Rusty, this seems to be a slight step away from recruiting – which we’re seeing any number of recruiting firms doing. Why the movement towards non-recruiting services? 

We are not stepping away from senior level executive recruitment in any way – we are expanding. BCAG is a response to growing demand for a more consultative set of board services designed to enhance board and leadership performance. We have added new capabilities and people over the past several years to meet this demand. 

“The most pressing challenge for the C-suite is keeping up with the pace of change from disruptive forces impacting almost every industry. This requires robust talent management, which includes frequent reassessment of skills, competencies and experiences; vigorous development and training programs; imaginative and agile organizational designs and processes; and an enlightened approach to diversity and inclusion.” 

Charles, what’s the biggest challenge corporate boards are facing? Is it succession planning, boardroom diversity, culture issues – all of the above? 

All of the above. Boards face challenges not only from disruptive forces transforming their industries but also increasing regulatory and investor scrutiny. Institutional investors as well as activists are raising the expectations for directors and boards. Many of the services we are offering through our board & CEO advisory group are designed to help boards address these challenges proactively and creatively. 

As far as talent management, Justus, what’s the most pressing issue from the C-suite on down today? 

The most pressing challenge for C-suite talent management is keeping up with the pace of change from disruptive forces impacting almost every industry. This requires robust talent management, which includes frequent reassessment of skills, competencies and experiences; vigorous development and training programs; imaginative and agile organizational designs and processes; and an enlightened approach to diversity and inclusion. 

To read the full article, click here.