When you run a business, you don’t always know how to make the best decisions. After all, your expertise is in one area, but you might not be well-versed in finance, marketing, management, or growth strategy. That’s where having an advisor for your startup comes in handy.
It’s important to note that you don’t have to have just one advisor for your business. You can build an advisory panel, which would give you access to talented people in all the areas of your business.
1. Identify Your Areas of Weakness
The key to success is knowing what you’re not good at. You can’t be an expert at everything in your business, so pick the areas you are weakest in, or seek the most help in. These will be the ones you start recruiting advisors to help with.
Maybe you really want to make a splash on social media but aren’t doing it with your current efforts. Then you can find a rock star social media influencer to guide you to success in that area.
Start with 1-3 areas where you think having an advisor will help.
2. Look at Who You Know
Maybe you’ve always admired a savvy accountant you met at a networking event. She might be a good person to approach about joining your advisory panel if accounting is a weakness. Look to others you’ve done business with, people you’ve networked with, or even a friend of a friend to start your search.
If you can’t find who you’re looking for, expand the search. Turn to your social networks, friends, and family. Just have a clear idea of what an advisor will look like, and be sure to avoid people that won’t add value to your advisory panel.
3. Decide What You Want from Them
Naturally, you want advice. But how regularly will you want your panel to meet? Do they all need to meet together, or can you work with them individually, based on the area you need help with? Do meetings need to be in person, or does virtual also work?
Knowing what you want from them will help you pitch potential advisors. They’ll want to know what’s required of them to determine whether they have the bandwidth to help you.
If you get turned down, keep looking. One advisor may be able to recommend another. Before long, you’ll have a stellar team of people who will help you take your business to the next level!