It's much more difficult to recruit directors today
While its never been more important to have a high quality, engaged board, it's also never been more challenging to recruit one.
According to Fortune Magazine May 16, 2005: "Turnover has reached record highs, with 50% of outside directors quitting at Fortune 1,000 companies."
This is in part because there is a much broader recognition of the liability associated with being a director in the 21st century. As an example, the same article states "the 12 former WorldCom directors [who] agreed to pony up $25 million of their own cash to settle shareholder claims."
Another factor is that it now takes boards much more time and work to fully discharge their fiduciary responsibility.
The result is that many people today simply will not consider joining a board and many organizations will not allow their executives or partners to join boards. The newspaper article below describes a common policy.
While its not possible to accurately quantify, many directors believe that today the available pool of good quality, recruitable directors is only one third as big as it was in the late 1990s.
One way to recruit good directors is by networking. Entrepreneurs can find good prospective directors at local industry events or by asking everyone in their contact list for ideas. Many companies are now using professional recruiting firms to grow their boards.