Post-Crisis Governance Overhaul
As one of the world’s largest companies was emerging from a leadership and governance crisis, Board and CEO Advisory Partners was retained by the new board chair to help the new board and the new CEO improve the governance of the company.
A multidisciplinary team of governance and industry experts conducted a full board assessment and governance review that included analysis of the following:
- Alignment of the board and management on the new strategy
- Composition of the board relative to the strategy
- Effectiveness of board and committee leadership
- Board and committee structure and governance processes
- Culture and dynamics of the board
Board and CEO Advisory Partners also conducted extensive benchmarking analysis relative to peer and best-in-class organizations and reviewed governance requirements for the country and key governance issues for institutional investors and proxy advisors to ensure the governance upgrades were best in class.
The comprehensive set of recommendations for board effectiveness led to dramatically improved governance. Board and CEO Advisory Partners has an ongoing advisory relationship with the company to measure progress against the original recommendations.
Crisis Averted: Comprehensive CEO Succession and Search
Board and CEO Advisory Partners was engaged by a large global automotive company to begin the search for a new CEO to succeed the current, larger-than-life CEO who planned to retire in the coming years.
The multidisciplinary team of board advisors, including experts in CEO-succession, the automotive sector, and leadership and governance in Europe and the United States, began by defining a job description to reflect the strategy of the company. This work included analysis of the business context and strategy, the culture of the organization and executive team, the board dynamics, and the expectations of key stakeholder groups.
A comprehensive search identified the top internal and external candidates. This work included development planning for internal candidates, as well as a risk/reward assessment and scenario-based analysis of the flight risk for key members of the executive team.
Ultimately, it was decided that an internal candidate would be best suited to continue to execute the company’s current strategy. The selection process was accelerated when the CEO stepped down unexpectedly. The relationship that had developed between Russell Reynolds Associates and the board enabled rapid decision-making, and RRA was able to help facilitate a seamless transition by the new CEO.
Orchestrating Seamless Transition at the Top
A highly regarded hospital system needed to plan for the succession of its iconic leader. Board and CEO Advisory Partners was engaged to help design a two-year, internally-focused succession planning, assessment and CEO transition process.
Upon completion of the succession, assessment and development work, and the eventual selection of the new CEO, the Board and CEO Advisory Partners team helped the board chair and new CEO design and execute a robust, year-long transition plan, simplify the organizational model, and develop the internal and external transition-related communications. Russell Reynolds advisors provided ongoing counsel to the board chair and the new CEO to ensure a smooth transition process between the incoming and incumbent CEOs.
Our extensive experience with CEO transitions helped the CEO to anticipate issues that may not have been in view, engaged with stakeholders who may have been overlooked and ensured that the critical issues were being prioritized.
Increasing Diversity in the Boardroom
A large industrial company brought in Board and CEO Advisory Partners to develop a five-year Board Composition Plan, with an emphasis on increasing the diversity of the board.
The Board and CEO Advisory Partners team conducted an in-depth analysis of the company strategy and its implications for the skills and experience new board members would need for the future. Russell Reynolds also conducted extensive benchmarking analysis relative to peer and best-in-class organizations, and reviewed country governance requirements and key issues for institutional investors and proxy advisors to ensure the governance and composition were best-in-class. The company is now led by one of the world’s most diverse boards, with eight new directors placed by Russell Reynolds, six of whom are women or people of color.
This work reflects Russell Reynolds’ leadership in board diversity. In 2018, 44% of the directors who were placed by the firm were women and 28% were people of color. Over 50% of these placements were first- time directors. Our track record in board diversity is made possible, in part, by the Russell Reynolds Associates’ Black Directors Conference, which is now in its 15th year and convenes over 300 African-American and Latino Fortune 500 corporate directors.