On paper, academics and practitioners agree that governance boards have two roles: future performance (strategy) and conformance. Yet in reality most Boards seem to expend most of their energy on conformance. Twenty-four days ago, a California lawyer, Douglas Y. Park, asked why Boards do this. Park's blogpost triggered a robust discussion on a LinkedIn group. Now, 324 comments later, a new model for governance seems to be emerging.
This might seem to be a rather minor event on the world's stage, however I think it is significant, for several reasons. I'll highlight two in particular. First, great minds from all around the world have shared their experiences and thoughts about the topic—without spending anything on travel, accommodation or conference fees. The speed of interaction and "reach" has been truly amazing. Second, in addition to purely commentating and critiquing, correspondents have worked together to create a new model. This is one of the first times I've seen an online discussion add such value.
If this example of going beyond "sharing" to "creating" is a bellwether of future learning and knowledge creation, we are in for an exciting ride!
Thoughts on corporate purpose, strategy and governance; our place in the world; and, other things that catch my attention.