Why should you think about adding a non-exec director to your business

Many owner managed businesses have managed perfectly well for many years without a non-exec director or any other external advisor but that doesn’t mean they don’t need/want or could benefit from that influence.

If you’ve built your team over the years and they are working well together, is there an element of group-think creeping in?

The tendency is to say “this works, so we will keep doing it” but that doesn’t take into account any changes to the market or the wider economy. Far better to be predicting change and preparing for it rather than seeing change impact your business and having to react to it.

The first benefit of a non-exec is having an outsider look at your business and compare what you are doing to other businesses. They may not be in the same markets or even the same sectors but in many respects all businesses are similar. That external view may highlight strengths that you had not recognised or valued or even see opportunities you have overlooked. Of course, it is very likely that weaknesses and threats will be exposed as well.

The initial impact of a non exec will be to identify with the exec team some form of improvement in the business so the secondary impact will be in assisting the exec team to implement the necessary changes. If there are no improvements to be made yours will be an exceptional business!

After this initial impact, the non-exec role can be split into several elements:

Coach – helping team members be the best they can be

Mentor – bringing extensive knowledge and past experience to implement improvements

Business Friend – a sounding board for when it all get too much

Governance – advising and directing where necessary on corporate governance

Could your business benefit? Drop me an email or give me a call to discuss.

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