The role of the Board of Directors is to represent the shareholders’ interests in the day-to-day affairs of the company. In major organisations, the diverse backgrounds of the board members would provide a breadth of experience in all areas of business to advise the CEO and ensure company decisions are geared towards achieving strategic objectives. The decisions taken should be intended to grow the company and benefit the shareholders.
But what if your company is only owned by a few shareholders, do you really need a board of directors then? Or what if your organisation is owned by yourself and one other partner? Or just you? The value of a board is not only to keep you, the key decision maker, accountable, but also to provide you the opportunity to bounce ideas off people of different backgrounds, expertise and perspective, to gain some much-needed insight. As an entrepreneur, your success depends on your tenacity to make your business work, and sticking to your principles even when the odds are against you. However, this stubbornness can also prove to be the downfall of your business if you persevere with a bad decision.
How to benefit from this advice
Soliciting, and listening to, opinions from an informed source can prove to be invaluable. Even the late Steve Jobs, who was well-known for perfectionism in his products and being an autocratic CEO, listened to the opinions of his team on occasion. If you understand the value that you can add to your business by surrounding yourself with people you respect who are well-informed (either your ‘Board of Directors’ or just an advisor), then you owe it to your own success as a business to do just that. Doing otherwise will rob you of what you can achieve in the future.