Creating a startup board of advisors is a waste of time. Yes, you heard me right, it’s a waste of your time.
You’re likely to get advice telling you that having a board of advisors will help you get funded. However, that advice, however well intended, is wrong. In fact, having a board of advisors could potentially hurt your chances of getting funded.
Why you don’t need a board of advisors to get funded.
When I was starting to raise the initial funding for my company, I had gotten it in my head that I needed a board of advisors if I was going to raise money.
When I was an entrepreneur in residence at a San Francisco Venture Capital Fund, most of the startups that got money had a board of advisors. In fact, many of these startups proudly displayed a slide of their advisory board in their pitch deck too.
So, by my way of thinking, if these companies that got funded had a board of advisors, then I needed a board of advisors.
And I spent a lot of time recruiting a really good group of advisors for my startup. I remember proudly telling my first investor, Gill, about the advisory board I had recruiting.
Then Gill said to me, “A company like yours doesn’t need an advisory board.“ You could literally hear the air coming out of the balloon because Gill was right.
I didn’t need a board of advisors.
The reason I didn’t need a board of advisors to get funded is the reason that most startups don’t need a board of advisors to get funded:
Many times, the advisors you recruit are just giving you permission to use their names. The advising they do, if any, is pretty minimal.
You, the CEO, and your team run the company, not a board of advisors. And experienced investors obviously know that.
Bear this in mind the next time you put up that pretty slide of your advisory board.
When do you need a board of advisors?
Okay, I think I’ve made a pretty compelling case for why you don’t need an advisory board. That being said, advisors can be very useful to you and your…