It is voluntary for the entrepreneur to build an advisory board and it should only be build if you will use the advises the board can give you.
First you have to analyze which skills you want in the company´s advisory board.
Do you need competence in sales, finance, product knowledge, HR or other key
When you have identified your needed competences you can start looking for members.
It is normally an advantage with a mix of generalists and specialists in a
board. Generalists may be persons with experience and overview of business
operations or exports and a specialist could be a lawyer specializing in IPR.
Some members of the board should also have knowledge and experience in the work of a board.
Obvious topics to the board can be leaders or former leaders of successful small businesses. These candidates are practitioners who know and understand the small business problems and challenges.
Another obvious group is directors or functional managers from major companies. These individuals often have a large network and have a specialized knowledge that the small company can not or find it very difficult to obtain by other means.
Once you have identified the names you want on the board please call them. The person you call will most likely be honoured by the call - if he does not sit in 50 advisory boards in allready.
Prepare the "sale" of board space: What do you want to tell possible board member when you meet him or make a telephone call? Maybe you have sent the possible board member an e-mail in advance to prepare for the talk.
You can also choose to have an external partner to call, e.g.:
Public support organisations for small businesses
Normally you shall not have your own accountant or lawyer to sit on the board because they have difficulty being impartial.
Experience says that a small and orderly but effective board of directors is
best – maybe two to three at a start.
The Advisory Board can always be expanded when the board functions and board routines and the tasks of company management are incorporated into the company´s routines.
The major difference between a professional board of directors and advisory
board is that the advisory board has no formal power. The owner can then be
completely indifferent to their advice.
Board of Directors have the formal power and can dictate direction of the company - if the owner does not own 51 % of the shares.
The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.
– Nolan Bushnell, founded Atari (early computer) and other businesses