5 reasons why you should hire a Non-Executive Director

One of the biggest challenges business owners face is not having someone they can bounce things off. Running a business is a lonely job, and even if there’s more than one of you, it may be that none of you have any experience of being a director.

To solve this problem, many people decide to bring in an outside advisor, commonly known as a Non-Executive Director (NXD). They’ll usually have accumulated a wealth of experience in senior roles, and will be happy to use that experience to help you grow your business.

They will become a director of your business and will typically work with you a couple of days a month. That’s where the ‘non-executive’ bit comes from.

A good Non-Executive Director will add a huge amount of value to a company. As well as taking a seat on your board, you can expect to enjoy a number of benefits. These include:

  1. They’ll have experience of running a business and will know the right questions to ask;
  2. Although they might only be in your business a day or two a month, they’ll also be available as a sounding board whenever you need them via email, skype, mobile etc;
  3. They’ll be able to make introductions to potential customers, partners and funders;
  4. They’ll bring a different perspective and because they’re not involved in the day-to-day running of the business, they’ll be able to look at the bigger picture;
  5. A Non-Executive Director will keep the management team in check, providing structure and governance around board meetings, which can often be neglected in a growing business.

Choosing a Non-Executive Director

When it comes to hiring an Non-Exec, here are a few other things you should consider: –

  1. Do their skills and experience compliment the existing team?
  2. They need to be able to provide an independent view, and not be afraid to challenge you on strategy and decisions;
  3. They should be a good communicator and a person of high integrity;
  4. Previous Board-level experience should be a pre-requisite;
  5. Good numeracy skills are an advantage. This will help them get to grips with the company’s financial affairs.

A non-executive director can make a huge difference to a business at any stage. The earlier you are able to add one to your board the sooner you’ll start to see the results.

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