Building a Board

An introduction to what a board is and how you can build one.

What is the board?

The board of directors is a group of people who supervise an organisation. As this is a series about startups, we will focus on what a board of directors can do for startups and how this can be integrated into the early stages of your startup.

The size of the board should best serve your startup.

Board members can spot blind spots in a business before they become bigger issues.

What a board does

The board has several duties and some of the typical ones are:

  • Governing the organisation by establishing policies and setting out strategic objectives.
  • Selecting the chief executive then supporting and reviewing their performance.
  • Terminating the chief executive.
  • Approving annual budgets.
  • Ensuring the availability of financial resources.

Who is on a board

A good board for a startup is composed of:

  • The startup’s CEO - who might also be its founder.
  • A financial investor - could be an angel investor or a venture capitalist.
  • Fellow CEOs who have built or are building successful startups.

“Building a board”

This is the process of developing your startup’s board of directors - from figuring out who could be a director to asking them to be a director.

The first step is deciding how many seats is on the board. For young companies, this should be a smaller amount - three to five members - as the board can increase as your startup gets bigger.

The second step is identifying a skills gap that is needed for your startup and seeking out directors who have experience in those areas. These can be people who have expertise in product development, market development, fundraising, etc. They can come from your broader network - from sites like LinkedIn or existing networks from events you have attended.

These skills should be highlighted to your broader network’s list of potential directors then you should evaluate the personality traits of each director to make sure those align with your startup’s values.

Zanda will be hosting an online event about building a board for your startup on June 21st. You can sign up to this event here!

You can also find other events about building up your startup on the Rbbl website.