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Beyond the numbers: Creating better corporate reports

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 Beyond the numbers better corporate reports

Companies spend considerable time and energy communicating to the world how they have created value for stakeholders—and how they expect to do so in the future. Yet when it comes to corporate reporting many companies fall short: they satisfy their fiduciary duty but may fail to convey a clear and honest representation of the company and its performance, governance, composition, and prospects. This situation benefits no one.

To learn more about how companies can improve their corporate reporting, we partnered with Legal & General Investment Management, one of Europe’s largest asset managers. We reviewed a selection of 2014 annual reports in the FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 and sought to identify companies who have balanced disclosure and clarity while telling their value-creation story. In addition to covering all the legal and regulatory requirements, we believe that good corporate governance must also address three concerns that investors, management, and boards have in common:

  • How does the company grow?
  • How does it address and manage risk?
  • How does it build the capability to compete?

The best corporate reports go well beyond dry recitations of numbers and puffed-up executive pronouncements. They provide a window through which stakeholders can view the true workings of the business—its strategies and governance, the capabilities of its leaders, its past successes and failures, and its vision for the future. They offer an opportunity to tell their company’s story with authority and credibility.

About the authors:

Will Moynahan (wmoynahan@heidrick.com) is the managing partner of Heidrick & Struggles’ London office; he leads the CEO & Board Practice for Europe and Africa.

Sacha Sadan is the director of Corporate Governance at Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM).

This excerpt is drawn from a forthcoming article in the April 2016 issue of Governance.


Will Moynahan Partner +44 20 70754000

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