Fidelio supports Chairmen in building Boards that add value, and as such we are acutely aware of critical themes on the Board agenda. In that context, in 2016 the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) opened a debate on Corporate Culture and the role of Boards. A healthy corporate culture is linked to delivering long-term sustainable value. Surely a key contributor is employee wellbeing. How well do Boards understand what promotes and what undermines wellbeing? Do Boards have a strong grasp of the links between productivity and wellbeing?
Fidelio was delighted to host Lord “Gus” O’Donnell, former Cabinet Secretary and the Chair of Pro Bono Economics, for a Board breakfast entitled “The Board & Wellbeing” on 4th October 2017.
Lord O’Donnell, former Cabinet Secretary and Head of the UK Civil Service (2005-11) and former Chair of the Commission on Wellbeing and Policy (2013-14), has long been a proponent of the importance of wellbeing as a critical economic and business driver. Lord O’Donnell has written and lectured extensively on this topic and is now championing the practical application of insights from economics and evidence on wellbeing at Pro Bono Economics.
As such we were delighted to ask Lord O’Donnell to address three questions, all relevant against the backdrop of the FRC focus on Boards and culture:
- Does wellbeing have a place in capitalist society as a meaningful metric?
- What is the business case; what are the levers available to Boards to promote greater wellbeing; and how can Boards assess impact objectively?
- Does the focus on wellbeing require a major shift in Board thinking and in Board composition?
Our guests at this Fidelio Board breakfast were be Chairmen, Non-Executive and Executive Directors. The breakfast was held at Aquavit London, St James’s Market 1 Carlton Street, London SW1Y 4QQ.