Diversity and inclusion: How can boards safely drive change from the top?

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are boardroom agenda items. Whilst much of the focus has been on achieving greater board diversity, the spotlight is increasingly moving towards the board’s responsibility for the organisation’s overall D&I strategy. In a challenging landscape, with a variety of attitudes towards DEI being expressed by stakeholders, and legal limitations on what actions can lawfully be taken to improve DEI, how do boards safely drive change from the top? To what extent should boards intervene or let change happen organically?

Our Spring 2024 Issues for Boards publication identifies key themes for boards to focus on in the coming year and provides insight to aid directors and general counsels in navigating tricky issues ahead.

In particular, our article “DEI: How to lead without going offside” explores the expectations of boards for promoting DEI, as the responsibilities of business leaders and corporate boards have expanded beyond traditional oversight. From targets to incentives, the gift of time and applying the DEI lens, we consider how boards can safely drive change from the top and summarise the five focus areas for boards and GCs to consider in the coming years. 

You can read our full Issues for Boards publication here, including articles on related topics such as the rise of generative AI, governance expectations around cyber-attacks, and the rise of the investigating NED. If you would like to speak to us about any of these issues, please get in touch.