Boardrooms face exceptionally fine judgements balancing the interests of the company and its shareholders, the interests of employees, and the interests of society and the economy. Boardrooms have to do all this in the knowledge that key judgements (and potential challenges) about the decisions they have taken are more likely to be made after the crisis is over than at the point of decision. Experience suggests that it is often hard to re-assemble evidence after the event of factors which appeared critical at the time decisions were taken. But when national balance sheets face exceptional stress in the aftermath of the crisis, boardrooms should be ready to be held to account for the decisions they have taken.
This article was first published in the June/July issue of Governance + Compliance magazine.