In the many conferences attended this past quarter, from the NACD’s Global Board Leaders’ Summit “RE:defining VALUE”  to the List Sell Negotiate 2017 in Sydney, Australia, the themes of leadership, people, innovation and culture were top of mind. How to cope with the oncoming tsunami waves of change had threads of similarity, whether addressing the new roles of board leaders or the how to prepare the top real estate agents in Australia.  Continuous learning and building cultures based on values that engage people to innovate and strategically drive change were key. Winning hearts and minds, and building agile teams of people to develop and execute, recruit and retain talent, and continually innovate to meet the changes of our evolving world and customers was emphasized. 

The NACD Blue Ribbon Commission Report on “Culture as a Corporate Asset”was the work of a blue ribbon commission made up of 35 experienced governance leaders and directors who focused on the board’s responsibility of corporate culture oversight – defined as one of the top governance imperatives of every board. Culture, described as “the sum of the shared assumptions, values and beliefs that create the unique character of the organization” is a hard issue, not a “soft issue.” “If culture is left to change, it can absorb precious energy and put the handbrake on the organization achieving its purpose and strategic goals. But if led and managed well, culture is the rocket fuel for delivering value to stakeholders.” 

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Stuart Levine


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