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Startup Boards: Getting the Most Out of Your Board of Directors

Startup Boards: Getting the Most Out of Your Board of Directors

Brad Feld, Mahendra Ramsinghani

ISBN: 978-1-118-44366-8

Dec 2013

240 pages

Out of stock

$29.95

Description

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.

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