ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon Print

Toshiba and SoftBank show the limits of board power

Independent directors can check rash management moves, not provide leadership

| Japan
Toshiba's logo in front of its headquarters in Tokyo: An independent board could not have eliminated the deeper causes of the company's decline.   © AP

Stephen Givens is a corporate lawyer based in Tokyo.

The recent troubles of Toshiba and SoftBank Group are useful reminders that independent boards of directors ultimately can have a limited impact on corporate success or failure. Like baseball umpires or exam proctors, they play a valuable role in helping to enforce rules and prevent cheating. But they do not hit home runs or get A's on their exams.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

Discover the all new Nikkei Asia app

  • Take your reading anywhere with offline reading functions
  • Never miss a story with breaking news alerts
  • Customize your reading experience

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more