Advisory Board Members Attributes
To gain a better understanding of the knowledge, skills and attributes that make advisory board members valuable, in order to build an advisory board for a tech startup
One source notes that key qualities to seek in an advisory board member are an action-oriented personality, deep industry knowledge, culture fit, alignment with key team members, communication skills, and networking skills. Another source says that those recruiting advisory board members should seek doubters, rather than ‘yes men’ who are willing to contradict the thinking of the entrepreneur and not afraid to give advice. An additional source notes that strong industry expertise allowed his advisory to support him in strategic planning, and that having deep industry knowledge on the board can prevent mistakes.
Another source notes creating a diverse cross-section of people with various backgrounds, in order to create a broad range of opinions and perspectives from diverse backgrounds.
Solid records of integrity and high character were also noted to be important traits, as an advisory board has to be trustworthy enough to share confidential information with and avoid public disclosure of information shared. Generous board members who aim to give back to the entrepreneurial community are also recommended, as they will have a genuine and non selfish desire to support the company in its success. Board members that are accomplished at more successful companies are useful, as they can offer sound guidance through processes they have already navigated. Has already accomplished what you want to accomplish, such as applying for industry certifications, shifting business models, or navigating transitions. Board members should also be available to show up to meetings regularly- board members who are often out of town or unable to attend might be problematic as part of a company’s leadership. Similarly, board members should be reliable, both in showing up and following through on business.
Forbes notes that the C³ Factor applies to advisory boards, with members; needing to have Competence, Credibility and Compatibility.
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