As an adult we dedicate a majority of our lives to our professions – for many, our careers provide us direction and meaning. With all of the hard work that we have put forth in becoming an expert in our identified fields, we want the opportunity to share our expertise with others and help companies grow, hence providers like AdvisoryCloud offering their services. With this idea, more and more individuals are joining advisory boards around the globe.

An advisory board is a group of individuals that provide non-binding strategic advice to the management of a corporation, organization, or foundation. It is a collection of people who bring different ideas and experiences to a company to help them grow and develop their strategies.

An Advisory Board for Startups

Benefits To The Companies

One of the best times to commence your position on an advisory board is at the beginning stages of their development. A startup is still in its creative phase, trying to overcome the daily challenges to be the next big company. Unfortunately, it is estimated that only 10% of startups find future success. In a recent article posted on, the reasons most startups fail include:

  1. Lack of focus
  2. Lack of motivation, commitment and passion
  3. Too much pride, resulting in an unwillingness to see or listen
  4. Taking advice from the wrong people
  5. Lacking good mentorship
  6. Lack of general and domain-specific business knowledge: finance, operations, and marketing
  7. Raising too much money too soon

Although these may seem like obvious barriers that an entrepreneur will have to overcome, many do not have the capacity to work through them. This is when an advisory board can become most useful, allowing for an outside perspective to ensure that the business development is not halted due to the above reasons.

Benefits To The Advisors

As mentioned previously, getting started with a star up for an advisor is a great benefit as well. According to AdvisoryCloud, an online resource that provides professionals the platform, exposure, and tools to monetize their knowledge as an advisor, reports that “Startups are particularly appealing to advisors because it offers a unique opportunity to use the insights and knowledge they’ve accumulated throughout their careers to provide valuable guidance to early stage companies. For many advisors, working with a startup gives them an outlet to solve exciting startup challenges that are often missing from more mature companies.” 

Getting Started On An Advisory Board

The traditional methods to joining an advisory board included networking within your industry and community. However, thanks to advancements in technology, entrepreneurs are able to search the globe for the next advisor that they hire. Using online sources, such as AdvisoryCloud, can help companies select only the most qualified candidates for their board.

In fact, AdvisoryCloud just launched a new program specific for Startups – the Startup Advisory Board Program. The platform allows for executives to join the board of a company actively seeking help in growing their business. Furthermore, getting started and participating is simple and can be done in three steps:

Step 1: Request to Join A Board

“Choose a startup…that’s actively adding members to its advisory board. Submit your profile to the company and unless there’s a conflict of interest, you’ll received an offer to join the company’s advisory board.”

Step 2: Hear from the Founders

“If approved, you’ll receive a welcome letter from the founders of the company with information on the company, what they are looking for assistance with, and behind the scenes details of the companies challenges and opportunities.”

Step 3: Quarterly Advisor Briefings

“As a member of the advisory board you’ll receive a Quarterly Advisor Briefing from the founders that includes a “state of the union” and 3-5 questions they’d like feedback on for the coming quarter. You’re encouraged to respond to any questions you can add value to and provide any advice you can as a member of the advisory board.”

Compensation and Time Commitment

Working with a startup can be slightly different compared to getting on the advisory board of an established company. First off, many startups are still struggling financially – they are still in the red when it comes to profits. Therefore, many startups ask that in-lieu of monetary compensation, advisors share their knowledge in exchange for recognition as an Advisory Board member. Many companies also offer the potential for future monetary or equity-based opportunities as the company matures.

As for the time commitment, this can vary depending on the advisor and the company that they join. In the case of AdvisoryCloud’s new program, Advisory Board members are encouraged to spend one to two hours a quarter responding to the Quarterly Advisor Briefing provided by the company. However, some other positions may require more time.

What Kind of Companies Can You Work With?

The most promising aspect of getting on an Advisory Board in today’s world is that there are endless possibilities. Everyday new ideas in all sectors are being converted to business models, requiring a large variety of skills and expertise. This massive growth of entrepreneurship is leading to opportunities for individuals seeking an advisory board position.

Here are a few positions that have been previously posted on the AdvisoryCloud platform (although many can be found elsewhere as well):

  • SureFire Capital specializes in co-investing for high net worth and family office investors.
  • SMJ Drones provides drone imagery and advanced aerial data services through a network of FAA Certified Drone Pilots.
  • ParentFile is an online account filled with tools and resources that enable you to be proactive in helping your parents when they reach the age of 70+.
  • NatureHeals provides women with hair loss issues 100% natural products, advice, and follow-up support.
  • Bachhus Room is creating a unique experience while breaking down the status quo surrounding wine drinking.
  • Dependalite is disrupting the status quo with cheaper, more environmentally friendly and efficienct battery solutions.
  • Smart International Inc. is KODAK’s 3D printing global brand licensee providing the latest solutions in 3D printing technologies.
  • Mailers HQ (Headquarters) is a leading manufacturer of customer bubble mailers and custom poly mailers for businesses in the United States and China.
  • Ocinator is a health a fitness subscription and application that was created on Stanford’s campus by a product engineer searching for a better way to stay fit.
  • M3 Life is a socially conscious health and wellness company creating top-shelf #CBD inspired wellness products.

Don’t Wait!

With the simplicity of online platforms and the abundance of companies participating in building their own advisory boards, individuals who are driven to grow in their careers are in an optimal position to get started. There are no minimal qualifications that must be met, and the companies have the choice to select who they feel is best suited. Therefore, getting started early can help anyone network and get started in a company that may be the next billion-dollar idea!

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