As Singapore deals with the prospect of an extended recession, slated to be one of the worst among its Asian counterparts, boards and companies are also in the midst of planning ahead for the economic aftermath. Russell Reynolds Associates, a global leadership advisory and search firm, in collaboration with the Singapore Institute of Directors, has released a survey on how boards are reacting in preparation for the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The survey found strong confidence among business leaders with a majority focusing on immediate responses and short-term mitigating solutions for COVID-19 impacts, showing not only how board members are currently preparing and thinking but also highlighting challenges that Singapore boards must address to achieve long-term resilience.

Other key points in the survey are below:

  • Resilience and readiness: Majority (63%) feel that their companies are resilient and ready to deal with the negative economic outcomes of COVID-19.
  • Board Priorities: When asked to rank stakeholders in order of priority during the COVID-19 crisis, employees emerged as top priority, while Environment was ranked last.
  • Effectiveness in Leveraging Technology: Majority expressed that their company has been able to effectively leverage technology and drive innovation in adapting to the current business environment.
  • Leadership and Culture: Respondents expressed a high level of confidence in communication at both the Board and Management level, as well as in the leadership and culture within the company to overcome difficult situations brought about by the crisis.
  • Leadership Traits: The most important leadership trait for both Boards and Management was the ability to cope with complexity, while exhibiting flexibility to make decisions. On the other end, the ability to navigate board/management relationship emerged as lowest priority for both Boards and Management.



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