Why You Need a “Virtual” Board of Directors
Posted by Dana Zurbuchen on December 4, 2008 in Business Management, Business Start Up Advice [ 2 Comments ]
Quick question: When you hear the phrase “Board of Directors” do you think of Fortune 500, Mega-Sized, enormous conference table companies?
Show of hands?
It sounds impressive to have a Board supporting you. To provide direction, guidance and support to you and your business. But that’s just for the big guys, right?
What if you – small business entrepreneur – could have your own Board of Directors, AND stay the size you are? Receive all the support and benefits the big guys do without the “bigness” of the big guys?
Enter the “Virtual” Board of Directors.
Any business can have a Board of Directors – a set of respected professionals who serve in an advisory capacity for your business. Yep, even you.
Why should you have a Board of Directors?
- Reality Checks – Board members can bring your feet back to the ground wen you are flailing, unfocused or scattered (it happens to the best of us). They’ll keep you on track so you don’t lose traction.
- New Insights – When Board members from different backgrounds, have different experiences. They’ve seen different successes and failures, and have different ideas you can use in your business.
- Provides Stability – Financial folks like when small businesses have support from seasoned professionals. It gives them confidence knowing you’re not out there on your own.
You may be wondering “why would somebody do that for me? Who am I to ask that of another professional?”
First things first….who are you not to ask that of another professional? You’re no less important than any other entrepreneur.
So, why would they agree to be on your Board?
- Networking – being on a Board allows fellow members networking opportunities with other professionals. Make your Board appealing to other members so they’ll want to join you, and they will also benefit from the experience.
- Leadership Experience – Professionals are continutally seeking leadership opportunities. Boards are great ways to do that.
- Honor – What an honor to be asked to be on a Board, particularly by a business owner who is taking the initiative to take their business to the next level!
What types of industries should the professionals on your board represent? The usual suspects are industries like finance, law and human resources. Don’t forget about asking other successful entrepreneurs who have navigated the waters and make it (in non competing industries, of course). They have great insights on how to make it through the tough times, how to grow, and how to make the most of the high times.
How can a Board serve your business?