As we have discussed before, several issues keep up boards of directors and general counsels at night.

The recent Law in the Boardroom Study, performed by Corporate Board Member and FTI Consulting and discussed here, confirms that several of these issues continue to worry directors and GCs.

Cybersecurity tops the list for both directors and GCs, and each group also cites Operational Risk, Corporate Reputation and Crisis Preparedness as top 5 issues. In addition, directors are concerned about Succession Planning and GCs about Regulatory issues.

The study highlighted the following areas of concern:

  • Cybersecurity and IT: risks and breaches are increasing, costs are rising, investors want accountability, companies need crisis management plans  and directors need more information
  • Shareholder engagement: investor scrutiny of board refreshment, diversity, independence and compensation is increasing and companies need to be prepared
  • Heightened M&A risk: increased deal activity brings transaction risk and the need for extensive due diligence
  • Governance and compliance: regulatory compliance has shifted from the implementation of procedural-based rules to an emphasis on investor transparency and disclosure
  • Social media risks: increased risk requires oversight and a digital strategy that incorporates social media

This study was released in Corporate Board Member’s annual issue featuring “America’s Best Corporate Law Firms.”