Report of the NACD Blue Ribbon Commission, Fit for the Future

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In Brief: The accelerating pace and intensifying complexity of change are leading to the emergence of a fundamentally different operating reality than incumbent executives and directors have experienced in their careers to date. For boards and their leaders—the independent chair or lead director and committee chairs—this is a period of challenge and transition that has profound and immediate implications, many of which will intensify dramatically over the next 5 to 10 years. They cover board renewal, operations, transparency, and accountability.

The report of the 2019 Blue Ribbon Commission, Fit for the Future: An Urgent Imperative for Board Leadership, aims to help boards meet these challenges. The report takes a deeper look at major business trends and their implications for board oversight, and recommends specific actions board leaders can take—on board structure, engagement, composition, culture, and disclosures—to position their boards for the future. It also offers a set of practical tools, examples, and case studies that boards can use to elicit changes essential to keeping themselves focused and forward looking.

The report also includes a toolkit that provides sample documents, questions to inform boardroom discussions, and other resources to support directors in implementing recommendations from the report.

This resource can help your board to

  • Engage with new and fast-changing drivers of strategy and risk,
  • Align its renewal process to current and future strategic and risk needs,
  • Foster a collaborative and inclusive culture,
  • Drive ongoing and rigorous assessments of its processes and structure,
  • Enhance transparency and disclosure of its governance, and
  • Delineate the role of board leaders in overseeing board dynamics.

Most relevant audiences: directors of public, private, and nonprofit organizations; committee chairs; CEOs; lead directors; board chairs