Director Skills: Diversity of Thought and Experience in the Boardroom
SEPTEMBER 14, 2018
While Mike D of the Beastie Boys was “bustin’ out trap kits” to demonstrate his skill as a rapper, nominating committees are more focused on the education, background, and experiences of potential candidates for the board of directors. And while this approach yields sufficiently qualified board candidates, boards may benefit from taking a closer look at the particular set of skills that a director would bring to the board, or in Mike D’s terms, what skills will pay the bills.
The questions are: what are those skills, and, perhaps more importantly, do those skills translate to better practices at the company. In looking at the role of the board in terms of (1) serving as the fiduciary to shareholders and (2) adopting policies to oversee risk, an increase in the number of unique skills in the boardroom translates to better board practices on governance, environmental, and social issues.