|Crisis management depends on governance practice, survey says|
|Friday, 26 October 2012 10:28|
Reputation management and the establishment of a culture of corporate governance starts from the top. Barclays’ recent CEO shuffle and the BBC’s handling of the Savile situation prove the need for consistency and preparation in managing a corporate image.
Grant Thornton’s survey of 242 2011-12 annual reports find that governance reporting is proliferating among chairmen, though it has a ways to go yet. The survey cites the need for a consistent vision presented to stakeholders and employees is necessary to steering the corporate ‘moral compass.’
Simon Lowe, partner and chairman of Grant Thornton’s Corporate Governance Insititute, says, “The reputational damage inflicted by such scandals underlines the need for all companies to prioritise good governance. In a crisis, businesses have to rely on the values that have been embedded throughout the business, rather than reaching for the manual. As such articulating the company's values and thereby broadcasting their importance to all stakeholders should be actively encouraged."
The survey finds that 75% of chairmen refer to governance practice in their statements in annual reports. However, only one in twenty discuss corporate culture and governance in detail and a quarter avoid the topic altogether. Grant Thornton says that crisis management and good governance begins with the ‘tone from the top’ and the need for clear practice.