Every entrepreneur’s main goal is to see their business grow, no matter at which stage it is. The process of expanding a business can be challenging and requires strategic planning, innovative ideas, and a strong team to execute them if you want to succeed. While there is a myriad of tools available to leaders looking to boost their business growth, few are as increasingly popular and effective as building a growth board.
Designed to help companies identify and execute growth opportunities, growth boards are typically made up of people with different backgrounds, expertise, and experiences. These people come together to challenge the company’s status quo by providing a fresh perspective, all while adding value and developing strategies to capitalize on any growth opportunities they identify.
While most founders and leaders tend to think about growth boards as “cheerleaders,” effective growth board members should operate more like challengers. This allows companies that have become myopic in their approach to growth to break out of toxic mindsets and practices, achieving a new level of intentionality that allows them to move forward.
The growth board model operates in a similar way to how venture capitalists choose which startups to fund. The most commonly used model for growth boards has teams inside the company operate as “startups” of sorts that report to the growth board, which holds them accountable and decides how much funding each “startup” receives (if any) or if the company is better without that startup.
Eric Ries, one of the pioneers of growth boards, has helped companies like General Electrics, Citibank, and Dropbox build their own teams. According to Ries, the main responsibilities of these boards are:
- Holding teams accountable to goals
- Mediating between the team and the company
- Supplying metered funding
While growth boards tend to be seen as a tool reserved for large enterprises, most experts agree with the notion that building a board is not a matter of size but of timing. Once a startup has a clear notion of what they are doing and has developed a strong basis for its future, considering building a growth board could be a good idea.
From strategic guidance for potentially inexperienced teams to networking opportunities through the connections that board members have, growth boards come with additional benefits for startups. All of these are important factors that can be the difference between a startup succeeding or failing in an ecosystem that is growing increasingly possible.
The “Building a Growth Board‘ panel at Grit Daily House at SXSW during this year’s SXSW discussed how growth boards can help startups succeed. It featured Linda Jenkinson, the first woman to IPO on NASDAQ; Nate Wasson, Co-Founder of Halbar Partners; and Brittany Mier y Terán, Head of Business Development at Harpie. They shared their experiences and insights with Cointelegraph’s Rachel Wolfson, who moderated the panel, and all of the attendees.
To learn more about our panelists and what they have to say on the topic, make sure to watch the video on Grit Daily’s YouTube Channel or below!