Philadelphia partner Doug Raymond’s latest column for Directors & Boards, written with the assistance of Philadelphia associate Ena Marwaha Lebel, was published in the Fourth Quarter 2011 issue of the magazine. It focuses on the careful consideration of board composition
Doug, a partner in the firm’s Corporate and Securities Practice Group, notes that while honest self-reflection can be difficult, “a board cannot function effectively unless it has the right people on it.”
He emphasizes that “building the right board requires an honest understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the existing directors, how well they work together, and their ability to formulate the company’s strategy and lead the company to implement its strategic goals.”
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), too, requires an expanded disclosure of why individual directors are qualified through an explanation of their specific attributes. It also requires a board to explain whether diversity is a factor it considers in identifying board candidates.
Doug notes that thoughtful boards understand that the “skills, background, and personalities of the people in the boardroom are critical to the company’s success.”
Boards should “take the time now to think carefully about board composition, without being too wedded to the status quo or the way things always have been done.”