governance

Andrew Hill

For my latest column about the ideal age and tenure for a chief executive, GovernanceMetrics International pulled from its database of 4,268 companies worldwide a list of the 16 oldest sitting chief executives in the world. (They did 16 so that Warren Buffett – undoubtedly the most famous, and the youngest, of this bunch – would appear in the ranking).

In the article, I only had room to refer to Buffett and Cubic Corporation’s Walter Zable, 95-year-old doyen of the group. So here is the full ranking by age, with company name and links to official corporate biographies, where available: Read more

Andrew Hill

Much has been made of the independence or otherwise of Glencore’s non-executive directors and of the inappropriate and unhelpful remarks of its chairman, Simon Murray, about women in the boardroom (there are none in Glencore’s*).

But I wonder how strong a challenge even the most independent directors can mount to hardened executives who are steeped in the Glencore corporate culture. Read more

Andrew Hill

The financial crisis revealed that management and supervision of banks were more than just a numbers game, so it’s distressing to see the European Commission edging towards a limit on the number of directorships bank directors can hold.

I’m all in favour of close monitoring – by the board – of whether board members are taking on too much. The job of bank director is too important to entrust to individuals who are already shouldering a big burden elsewhere. But the best way to ensure directors can devote quality time to the job is for the board nominations committee to be absolutely explicit about the amount of work involved. A clue: at large financial institutions, it’s a lot. Read more