DID-The New Age Board: Turning Uncertainty into Breakthrough Opportunities


Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast: Are Boards Paying Enough Attention to It?
Executive Summary

In a world where competitive conditions shift more rapidly and forcefully than ever before, Boards rightly spend a great deal of time discussing and validating the organisation's strategy. But as important as strategy is, it is often said that "culture eats strategy for breakfast". Reflecting on his transformation of IBM over a decade, Lou Gerstner concluded that "culture isn't just one aspect of the game (along with vision, strategy, marketing, financials, and the like...), it is the game."

Programme Details

This session advocated that Boards need to pay more attention to corporate culture. Not as an end in itself, but because culture has major implications on an organisation's ability to deploy strategy successfully; to innovate; to display throughout the ranks the right attitude towards risk, ethics and compliance; to venture into new industries or geographies; to acquire or partner with other organisations.

Facilitated by Jean-François Manzoni and complemented by eminent Asian Boardroom leaders, the session covered the following topics:

  • What is corporate culture and why should it be on the Board's agenda?
  • How is corporate culture assessed/measured?
  • How does it affect an organisation's ability to deploy its strategy, to innovate or to venture into new markets?
  • What are the cultural considerations in M&A situations?
  • How can the Board help the organisation to shape its ethics and compliance culture?
Your Facilitator
Jean-François Manzoni
Jean-François Manzoni

Jean-François Manzoni is the Shell Chaired Professor of Human Resources and Organisational Development and a Professor of Management Practice at INSEAD. His research, teaching and consulting are focused on leadership, the development of high-performance organisations and corporate governance. In corporate governance, he focuses on interpersonal dynamics — within the Boardroom and between Management and the Board, as well as the challenge to develop high-performance and ethical corporate cultures.

An award-winning teacher who has worked in more than 30 countries as a consultant, trainer and coach for several MNCs, he has also received numerous awards for his research, including the 2011 Research Award on Leadership & Corporate Governance from the Association of Executive Search Consultants. He is the co-Director of INSEAD's International Directors Programme and has co-facilitated the Programme for Enhancing Board Stewardship offered by the former Stewardship and Corporate Governance Centre (now known as Stewardship Asia Centre).

Attendees Included
  • Board Chairs and Non-Executive Directors of publicly listed, private and non-profit corporations
  • Government agency representatives
  • Social enterprise representatives


When & Where
16 Nov 2015
1 day
Quarterly series

"Great topic and excellent moderator."

Bob Tan, Chairman, SingEx Holdings

"Good interactions and dialogue with participants. Very insightful."

Chaly Mah, Chairman, Deloitte Singapore

"Being a director is a challenging role and constant learning is essential. Always good to learn from speakers and fellow directors."

Lee Chong Kwee, Chairman, Jurong Port

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