Running a small and medium-sized enterprise (SMEs) can be challenging, especially in today’s fast-paced business environment. One way that SMEs can improve their chances of success and growth is by installing a board of directors or an advisory board, even if they are not legally required to do so.
A board of directors or an advisory board can bring a competitive edge through a wealth of experience, knowledge, and resources.
The members of a board can provide valuable insights and recommendations on a range of issues, including strategy, operations, finance, marketing, and more. This can be particularly beneficial for SME owners who may not have extensive experience or expertise in all areas of business. This can provide an SME with a competitive edge.
By having a group of experienced and knowledgeable individuals who are committed to the success of the business, an SME can be better equipped to navigate complex business challenges and opportunities. This can help the SME to stay ahead of the competition and to grow and succeed in a fast-paced business environment.
A board of directors brings a new level of accountability, governance, and structure.
Board members can ensure that the business is operating in a transparent and ethical manner, and that the interests of all stakeholders are being considered. This can be especially important for SMEs that are looking to secure investment, as investors may be more likely to invest in a business that has a well-functioning board in place.
Another key benefit of having a board of directors is that it can provide a sense of structure and organization. Board meetings can provide an opportunity for SME owners to review their progress, set goals, and make decisions that will impact the future of the business. This level of structure and organization can help SMEs to remain focused and motivated, even when faced with challenges and obstacles.
A board of directors or advisory board can provide SME owners with a support network.
Board members can offer advice and support to the SME owner, and can help to keep them accountable and on track. This can be especially important for SME owners who may be feeling overwhelmed or uncertain about the future of their business.
A board can also help to connect an SME with a wider network of individuals and organizations. Board members can introduce the business to new customers, suppliers, and partners, which can help the business to grow and expand.
Having a board can be particularly important for SMEs when it comes to securing investment or financing.
Banks and venture capital (VC) firms often look for businesses that have a well-functioning board in place, as this can provide them with additional reassurance that the business is well-managed and operating in a transparent manner.
A board of directors can help an SME to access financing more easily. Board members may have connections with banks or VC firms, and they can help the business to make a strong case for investment. In addition, having a board in place can demonstrate to potential investors that the SME is well-organized and has a clear plan for the future, which can increase its chances of securing financing.
SMEs can use a board of advisors to expand its reach and access new customer groups, resources, and technologies.
Board members may have connections with other businesses or individuals who can help the SME to expand its operations or reach new markets. For example, a board member who has experience in a particular industry or market can help the SME to develop a strategy for entering that market, and to connect with potential customers and partners.
Board members may have connections with suppliers, technology companies, or service providers who can help the SME to improve its operations or to develop new products or services. For example, a board member who has expertise in technology can help the SME to adopt new technologies or systems that can increase efficiency, productivity, and profitability.
In a nutshell
There are many benefits for SMEs of installing a board of directors or an advisory board, even if they are not legally required to have a board. SMEs can take a significant step towards achieving their goals and securing their future success. One more thing: many SME advisory boards consist of volunteers that don’t add cost to a business.
Main image by Tyler Nix via unsplash.