DISCUSSION Create value, support growth

by Luke Robinson _______13th June 2016

UK companies are not investing. Laurie Fitzjohn-Sykes argues that governance structures are too focused on risk aversion rather than entrepreneurial leadership.

It is now 25 years since Tiny Rowland described non-executive directors as baubles on a Christmas tree, but how much progress have we made? Are they the independent stewards of long-term successful companies, or ineffective appendages, or worse, a damaging influence on management?

There has been no shortage of corporate governance reforms since then, starting with Cadbury, to Greenbury, Higgs, and Walker, amongst others.

This has led to progress in many areas. However, one problem is that reforms have followed scandals and therefore have been focused on preventing the same scandal happening again, rather than supporting long-term growth.

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