An essential guide to understanding the dynamics of a startup's board of directors Let's face it, as founders and entrepreneurs, you have a lot on your plate?getting to your minimum viable product, developing customer interaction, hiring team members, and managing the accounts/books. Sooner or later, you have a board of directors, three to five (or even seven) Type A personalities who seek your attention and at times will tell you what to do. While you might be hesitant to form a board, establishing an objective outside group is essential for startups, especially to keep you on track, call you out when you flail, and in some cases, save you from yourself.
In Startup Boards, Brad Feld?a Boulder, Colorado-based entrepreneur turned-venture capitalist?shares his experience in this area by talking about the importance of having the right board members on your team and how to manage them well. Along the way, he shares valuable insights on various aspects of the board, including how they can support you, help you understand your startup's milestones and get to them faster, and hold you accountable.
Details the process of choosing board members, including interviewing many people, checking references, and remembering that there should be no fear in rejecting a wrong fit Explores the importance of running great meetings, mixing social time with business time, and much more Recommends being a board member yourself at some other organization so you see the other side of the equation Engaging and informative, Startup Boards is a practical guide to one of the most important pieces of the startup puzzle.
, Mahendra Ramsinghani
John Wiley & Sons Inc
Country of Publication:
20 December 2013
Professional and scholarly
FOREWORD ix ACKNOWLEDGMENTS xiii PART ONE: OVERVIEW 1 CHAPTER ONE Introduction 3 CHAPTER TWO What Is a Board? 11 PART TWO: BUILDING YOUR BOARD 23 CHAPTER THREE Creating Your Board 25 CHAPTER FOUR Recruiting Board Members 49 CHAPTER FIVE The Formal Structure of the Board 63 CHAPTER SIX Aligning Your Board 71 CHAPTER SEVEN Is an Advisory Board Useful? 77 PART THREE: THE BUSINESS OF THE BOARD MEETING 85 CHAPTER EIGHT The Actual Board Meeting 87 CHAPTER NINE Motions and Votes 101 CHAPTER TEN Legal Challenges 111 PART FOUR: COMMUNICATIONS 115 CHAPTER ELEVEN Managing Ongoing Expectations 117 CHAPTER TWELVE Trying New Things 131 CHAPTER THIRTEEN Communication Confl icts 135 CHAPTER FOURTEEN CEO Transitions 143 PART FIVE: TRANSACTIONS 151 CHAPTER FIFTEEN Financings 153 CHAPTER SIXTEEN Selling a Company 157 CHAPTER SEVENTEEN Going Public 167 CHAPTER EIGHTEEN Going Out of Business 173 CHAPTER NINTEEN Conclusion 179 APPENDIX Checklist 1: Preparing Your Board Package 183 Checklist 2: Conducting Your Board?s Annual Assessment 185 Checklist 3: Question for Your Legal Counsel 187 Checklist 4: Should You Get Directors and Offi cers Insurance? 189 Checklist 5: Stock Option Grants and 409A Valuation 191 NOTES 195 INTERVIEWS 199 BIBLIOGRAPHY 201 ABOUT THE AUTHORS 203 INDEX 205 Excerpt from Startup CEO 211
Brad Feld has been an early-stage investor and entrepreneur for over twenty years. Prior to cofounding Foundry Group a Boulder, Colorado based early-stage venture capital fund that invests in information technology companies all over the United States he cofounded Mobius Venture Capital and, prior to that, founded Intensity Ventures. Feld is also a cofounder of Techstars and has been active with several nonprofit organizations. He is a nationally recognized speaker on the topics of venture capital investing and entrepreneurship. Mahendra Ramsinghani has over fifteen years of investment and entrepreneurial experience and has led investments in over fifty seed stage companies. He helped draft the underlying legislation for a fund-of-funds for the state of Michigan. For his contributions, Ramsinghani's immigration to the United States was approved under national interest. He is the author of The Business of Venture Capital (Wiley). His articles and blogs have been published in Forbes, MIT Technology Review, Thomson Reuters, and the Huffington Post. His educational background includes a BE in electronics and MBA in finance and marketing from the University of Pune, India.