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


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Startup Boards: Getting the Most Out of Your Board of Directors + Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website + Venture Deals: Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer and Venture Capitalist
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (December 31, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118443667
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118443668
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,413 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Let's face it, as founders and entrepreneurs you have a lot on your plate, from building your product, landing customers, and building a team to managing your finances and raising money. As you develop your business, especially after you raise capital, you should have a board of directors—usually three to seven individuals who'll seek your attention and, at times, tell you what to do. You'll also discover that with the formation of a board come the inevitable board meetings.

So how does an entrepreneur manage this beast called the board, which has many heads, and even more opinions? Indeed, dealing with this aspect of a startup can be tricky for anyone. That's why Brad Feld—a Boulder, Colorado–based entrepreneur turned venture capitalist—and seed investor Mahendra Ramsinghani have written Startup Boards. In it, they skillfully demystify board dynamics and the inner workings of a boardroom for today's entrepreneur.

Establishing an objective outside group is essential for startups, especially to keep you on track, provide you with support and advice, call you out when you flail, and, in some cases, save you from yourself. Here, you'll not only gain a better understanding of the softer dynamics involved with startup boards, but you'll also become familiar with the various legal and governance aspects associated with them.

Along the way, Feld and Ramsinghani detail the best practices that can make startup boards more effective. They, along with twenty other entrepreneurs, board members, and lawyers, share their real-world experience in this area, and provide examples of what works, and, equally as important, what doesn't. From proactively building a high-performing board and running more productive meetings to learning by sitting on the boards of other organizations, this book offers valuable insights into a necessary part of any successful startup.

Engaging and informative, Startup Boards is a practical guide to one of the most important pieces of the startup puzzle.

From the Back Cover

Praise for Startup Boards

"In addition to walking you through, in great detail, how a board functions, Brad has adopted many of the Lean Startup approaches to building, operating, and managing your board in a way that resembles continuous deployments. Any practitioner of Lean Startup would do well to use this approach to building their board."
—Eric Ries, author of the New York Times bestseller The Lean Startup

"I've had the opportunity to serve on a range of boards for companies at various stages in their lifecycle—so I know firsthand that building an effective board, and leveraging it wisely, is both a challenge and an opportunity. This new Brad Feld book will help you get it right."
—Steve Case, Chairman and CEO, Revolution; cofounder, AOL

"I've been fortunate enough to sit on a few startup boards with Brad. His 'less is more' approach to board meetings keeps the process efficient and focused on strategy. If you have any role on a board of directors, stop messing with PowerPoint and read this book right now. I guarantee that you'll get far more satisfaction from your future interactions."
—David Cohen, CEO, Techstars

"Having sat on multiple boards with Brad and his partners at Foundry Group as well as currently being the CEO of GetSatisfaction, I greatly appreciate the power of an effective board for a fast-growing startup. This book shows you the way."
—Wendy Lea, CEO, GetSatisfaction

"An excellent board can dramatically help an entrepreneur while a lousy board can sink a company. This book can help you learn how to be on the right side of that equation."
—Craig Dauchy, Partner and Head of Venture Capital Group, Cooley LLP

"Having been involved early on the Zynga board with Brad, we both experienced a radically new board approach while scaling up a company at an unprecedented pace. While there is a time and place for traditional board governance, an active, involved, and engaged board is required for any startup. Learn how to do it right in this book."
—J. Sanford (Sandy) Miller, General Partner, Institutional Venture Partners

"Brad is a powerful force in the universe and his board-level membership was a booster rocket that helped us grow so fast. This book will help make CEOs more effective at dealing with the personalities that can be on a board, and I would consider it required reading for any board member so they can amplify their impact."
—Bre Pettis, CEO, MakerBot

"While board meetings should be helpful to entrepreneurs, many find them to be worthless and tedious. This book creates a framework for developing a high-functioning board that is a real asset to a company's success."
—Jason Mendelson, Managing Director, Foundry Group


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Easy to read.
themango
If you are starting or operating an early stage company, this book takes the mystery out of how and why you should build a world class board of directors.
Tim S Huntley
The authors walk us through what a board is, the process of creating and working with a board in a logical sense.
Christoph Trappe

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Keith on March 2, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As expected, this book has been a truly valuable resource. As a first time CEO - this book has helped me to understand how to assemble and get the most out of a board of directors - which is what I was looking for. If you've read Brad's blog or any of his previous books - you should have a good idea of what to expect. It's plain-spoken, with plenty of examples from real-life situations.
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By Joann MacMaster on April 5, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are thinking about starting a new venture or taking your company to the next level, I would strongly recommend this book!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book was so helpful for me to read. I only wish I had it when I was managing my first board of directors. It's easy to read, if full of helpful stories and anecdotes, and contains actionable guidance for managing a board. I'm energized to implement some of the strategies and techniques.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is probably the only book that says it as is when it comes to describing the functioning and challenges of being in a startup board.
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By Brian Grega on March 8, 2014
Format: Hardcover
As stated early in the book, "most startups fail due to self-inflicted wounds", including ignoring the importance of recruiting the right Board. Whatever stage your business is in, invest your time to read and act on the advice from this terrific book, it will make you a better CEO. Brad Feld's experience, augmented by contributions from other successful business builders will give you the best perspective on how to recruit a Board that will challenge you, guide you, support you and most importantly, call you out, when required.
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By jmole on March 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This a must read for any startup or mature company. Startup boards gives a better understanding of the role of board members as well how to make the board much more helpful for the company.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love the writing style and think this book delivers a lot of valuable information for folks who don't know how Startup Boards work.
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By Tracy on February 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is another great addition to the Start-Up Revolution series and one that I personally needed about a year before it was published! As a first time entrepreneur who is 18 months into my start-up, this book is the kick-in-the-pants that I needed to get my company surrounded by early stage board members who will help us navigate the turbulent waters of product/market fit, raising our first round of capital and beyond. We've done a lot with a board of advisors, but really need the expertise, support system, and accountability to a board in order to grow. This book provides the education and structure to help me, as a first time CEO, get it done.
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