Building your personal board of directors for your life and career can boost your business know-how.
We have a culture that values self-reliance and most people try to answer most questions themselves. Yet this burden of personal omniscience is heavy. And when it comes to leadership, management, business ownership and other careers, it’s also limiting. Why? Because, generally speaking, the world of work and business is in flux, and will be so for the foreseeable future.
Today the most successful corporate giants rely on their advisory boards to help spot new opportunities and potential pitfalls. Now you can have your own advisory board: a personal board of directors. Your board won't have fiduciary responsibility for your life, serve on committees or raise funds for you. But they can offer something more important – wisdom. In forming this group, you can tap into wisdom you normally would not have access to and you will develop a support network and grow your career.
Who is your personal board?
Your board is a small group of objective people who know your strengths and weaknesses, but are not necessarily tied to the emotional outcome of your decisions. The type of people you should pick are circumstantial and should depend on what you do or what you’re hoping to achieve. A good place to start is with your closest confidantes. You need to think broadly about what you need and once you have your first brainstorming session, you’ll immediately see how beneficial a board can be. These people will help you think outside of the box and give you advice and ideas you wouldn’t have had on your own.
Form your board
Temember that this is your life, business and career. If someone on your board offers advice that doesn’t sit well with you, you have to be able to honour your vision and trust your gut. Always process all of the information and advice you’re given, but honour your original goals and trust yourself. In the end, only you know what’s best for you.
Karl Smith is a Cape Town-based author, speaker and founder of Business Networking South Africa.
Contact Karl Smith:
Tel: 071 444 2210