Case Study: Getting the Right Board Directors on the Bus

Mar 29, 2021

The Board Chairperson suspected that certain Board Directors no longer embraced the company’s mission and in some instances, Directors did not appear to be fulfilling their fiduciary responsibilities. Newport assisted the client by conducting an unbiased performance appraisal of all of the client’s independent Board Directors.


A high-performing Board requires fully engaged Directors who embrace the organization’s mission, vision, and values and who place the needs of the organization ahead of personal interests. The client’s Board was experiencing conflict that was likely caused by underperformance of certain Directors.


Newport worked with the client to develop robust Director performance appraisal criteria unique to the client’s strategy and culture. We then developed a confidential online survey questionnaire and administered the survey to participants in the performance appraisal process; we bolstered the survey data with insights collected from confidential interviews. Informed by the findings, Newport identified those Directors who did not exhibit the behaviors that were important to the company.


Armed with data collected from our objective performance appraisal process, the client made the decision to part ways with two of its independent directors. The client also used the Director competencies that we jointly developed to coach Directors and to improve the job description that will be used to recruit new Board Directors.

Fast Facts:

  • Client Industry: Manufacturing
  • Revenues: $450 million
  • Employees: 900
  • Location: Southeast

How We Helped the Client:

  • Developed robust Director performance appraisal criteria
  • Facilitated Director performance appraisals and identified low-performing Directors
  • Created an opportunity to recruit two additional Directors whose behaviors more closely align with the company’s mission
  • Developed Director coaching instrument and recruiting tool

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