What does the NACD Blue Ribbon Commission report recommend for boards operating in a world of continuous disruption?
Opportunities and threats posed by disruptive forces and events have the potential to make or break an organization’s ability to create long-term value. Indeed, it is increasingly observed that disruptive risks impose a significant, sudden, and severe effect on an organization's revenue, profit, reputation, and even survival. Yet, almost half of directors in an online NACD poll reported that their board’s tendency to focus on known risks (those that management has already identified) creates a major barrier to the board’s ability to oversee disruptive risks, and less than 20% expressed confidence in management’s ability to address risks in this category.
The 2018 NACD Blue Ribbon Commission developed recommendations to help directors in all organizations sharpen their oversight of disruptive risks and turn uncertainty into sustainable advantage.
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Nora Denzel is currently an independent director of three technology companies: Ericsson, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), and Talend. She also serves on the board of the NACD Northern California Chapter. Denzel retired in 2012 as the senior vice president of Big Data from Intuit, the makers of TurboTaxÂ® and MintÂ®. She also held key senior executive roles during her tenure at HP Enterprise, including as the head of the Enterprise Software, Computer Storage, and Enterprise Consulting divisions. She began her career as a software engineer at the IBM Company and advanced steadily to hold executive-level engineering, business, and marketing positions.
Alex Wittenberg is the executive director of Marsh & McLennan (MMC) Insights and a San Francisco-based partner with management consulting firm Oliver Wyman. In this role he leads MMC’s research into better understanding of and addressing the long-term issues that pose the greatest challenges to the global economy and society as a whole: climate resilience, transformative technologies, workforce of the future, societal health, and infrastructure innovation. He is also responsible for collaboration with partner organizations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the World Economic Forum, and the World Energy Council.Â Wittenberg also manages Brink, the digital news service of MMC, and is an editor of the annual Oliver Wyman Risk Journal.Â For the past four years, he was recognized as a leading governance expert by the NACD as an NACD Directorship 100 honoree. He is also an advisory board member of the UN’s Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction and on the board of the Bay Area Council.