Board of Advisors
If you are a solopreneur like me then you really do appreciate the potential ups and downs we face on an almost daily basis.
Sure it’s exciting and we can make huge impacts and memorable moments with and for our customers.
But it’s also tough doing it all on your own
The uncertainty of entrepreneurship is by its very nature not for the faint-hearted.
If you are like me and make a few bad decisions early on in your business, you might suddenly find yourself between a rock and a hard place—with very little room to fix what you broke.
So the big question is…
How do you avoid making costly errors and mistakes early in your life as an entrepreneur?
If I had only known this years ago it would have saved me countless nights of lost sleep and thousands of wasted dollars.
The simple answer is to…
Form a Board of Advisors
Select people who have walked the same path that you are taking right now and who know where to go and more importantly, what to avoid.
Just think about this for a moment.
How would you FEEL if you were not trying to do it all on your own?
How much more secure would you be with the knowledge that you had access to a team of experts who could significantly reduce (or in many cases avoid altogether) the number of mistakes we all make and not just in our first year of business?
Ideally, your board of advisers would include people who you resonate with, respect, admire and trust completely.
They are also people who know you (and your strengths and weaknesses) and can hold you accountable. Select these advisors carefully and ensure they also complement your areas of expertise.
For example, if you like me, excel in sales coaching, find advisers with backgrounds in technology, social media, marketing agencies, lead generation experts, financing, or legal.
How do you assemble a board of advisers? Ask those people whom you trust implicitly to recommend others they think can help you.
Referral Partners: Trusted business colleagues who you collaborate with by helping each other grow businesses
Other Business Owners: People who own businesses in the same local area can offer great insight into what consumers want and how to best appeal to them.
Friends: You probably have successful friends—and it doesn’t matter if they’re entrepreneurs or employees. Your friends can offer their insights from the consumer perspective. Do you have friends who are particularly savvy in certain areas of business? You want them on your board of advisers.
Coaches & Mentors: These are people who’ve had experience in a similar field or industry. They know where the pitfalls are and how to avoid them.
Financial Advisor: It’s important to have someone on your board who knows financial issues.
IMPORTANT: Be crystal clear about your expectations. Have the participants sign nondisclosure agreements (to protect your business ideas) and release liability forms (to protect them if they give you bad advice).
How often you need to meet with your board is up to you.
Once a month is probably enough – you’ll be quite busy with other tasks and won’t have time to host weekly board meetings.
However, in between meetings, keep them posted via email or messaging about your business.
Think about your team of advisers as an extra set of eyes and ears that hopefully will see and hear what you miss as you go about growing your business.