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Structuring your board for growth - 07/08/17

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Bailey Fisher Executive Search hosted its latest Life Sciences Dinner in partnership with Silicon Valley Bank and Taylor Wessing recently, welcoming CEOs for discussion on the topic of Structuring your board for growth.

Our experts at the table, David Brown and Mark Treherne, shared insights gained during their impressive careers to date as founders, board members and investors.  Discussion was chaired by Nooman Haque, Director of Life Sciences at Silicon Valley Bank.

The following key points emerged from discussion:

  • Your board needs to be different from the executive team, in order to challenge and bring fresh views.
  • A board should meet 4-5 times per year.
  • Five board members is the optimum number.
  • Chemistry between the CEO and Chair is vital – these are two personalities that must work together.
  • Consider the challenges presented by different time zones if you have an international board.
  • Consider the value of the investor – what can they bring to the business aside from financial input?
  • Do investors need a board position? Some will take a seat but may not have significant input.
  • It is vital for the founders to have a clear vision for the business and to then find a chair to lead them.
  • Chair of the board should be experienced in terms of governance.
  • Consider compensation – what sort of salary or equity to offer. On the whole, a Chair role in Life Sciences will demand higher remuneration than in Technology as skills are more niche.

The next Life Sciences Dinner will take place during Autumn 2017.  If you are interested in finding out more about future events, please contact Kerry Linsey at Bailey Fisher Executive Search.

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