Insight

Boards assess impact of Trump administration agenda

The KPMG Board Leadership Center Spring Director Roundtable Series gathered insights from nearly 600 directors and senior executives across 16 cities.

Amid continuing uncertainty in Washington—on healthcare, tax reform, immigration, infrastructure spending, and more—directors can play a key role to help ensure that management focuses on the policy initiatives that are most critical to the company’s strategy and long-term performance. Yet the challenge of cutting through the noise and preparing for possible legislative and policy changes is formidable given the lack of progress on key Trump administration initiatives.

The KPMG Board Leadership Center Spring Director Roundtable Series gathered insights from nearly 600 directors and senior executives across 16 cities about how boards are helping companies to assess the potential impact of any policy shifts on business strategies, risk profiles, and operations.

“We’re facing a lot of what business abhors—uncertainty, but holding still is not an option,” said one director. “We have to ask the right questions. We can’t wait for the forecast to clear.”

Discussions focused on four broad areas:

  • Policy initiatives that may have the greatest impact (positive or negative) on the business
  • How management is assessing the potential impact of these initiatives on strategy, operations, and growth
  • How executives represent the company position on policy initiatives in communications with employees and stakeholders
  • An investor and stakeholder focus on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues in light of potential regulatory rollbacks

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