The top 3 mistakes Biotech companies make when building their Advisory Board

September 21, 2022

Whether you’re a young, small start-up or an established company racing through the ranks, any Biotechnology company needs a solid, well-built Board of Advisors behind the scenes to help them out.

But as with any role in such an important industry, it can be tough to know how to properly hire the right people who will be valuable to your business, especially when it comes to assembling a Biotech advisory board.

We’re experts in searching and recruiting the best talent of today for Biotechnology companies, including seeking high-profile specialists to take seats on the Board. With years of experience behind us, it means that we’ve witnessed plenty of mistakes others have made when building their Advisory Board, errors that we don’t want to happen to you.

Luckily, we’re here to warn you about these common mistakes and tell you the best ways to avoid them. After all, we want to help you craft a team of top-quality advisors that will help you achieve your main goal – cultivating a successful and prosperous business.

The role of the Advisory Board

Before we reel off the top mistakes Biotech companies make when building their Board, let’s firstly clear up the role of these advisors, and how they can help your company. Contrary to common belief, being on the Board is not just about turning up at a designated time and place and listening for an hour or so.

It’s a complex role that takes knowledge, experience and creativity. Board members have the difficult job of keeping the ins and outs of the company’s operations at arm’s length, so they can instead focus on the company’s strategies, assessing whether or not the business is moving in the right direction to achieve its goals.

Essentially, the members of an Advisory Board do precisely what the name would suggest – they provide expert advice and guidance so that a company can soar, succeed and continue driving towards future goals.

The top 3 mistakes made when building an Advisory Board

Hiring too close to home

When recruiting members for your Advisory Board, it’s easy to hire who you know. Of course, you know these people are great at what they do and that they would make excellent Board members. However, only offering seats to a familiar group of associates limits the value that the Board can bring.

Inherently, a close group of known people will feel some attachment to your company, which is all well and good and can have some great benefits. But it also comes with its dangers. It hinders the Board’s ability to criticise and critique the company’s direction – the exact opposite of what you need from your top group of advisors. There’s no point in being told that everything you’re doing is excellent, every single time.

While it’s vital that every member works harmoniously and comes together to deliver final ideas and strategies, it’s also equally important that each member is independent. Contrasting opinions and constructive criticism are the catalysts for new, exciting ideas and better solutions. Realistically speaking, sticking close to home in terms of Board members is only prolonging the inevitable. If you want to advance, you’ll have to shake it up at some point.

Too few, or too many members

As your company develops, your Board needs to develop too. Things are constantly changing and advancing in the Biotech industry, so why would your Board stay the same throughout?

The size of your Board should be synonymous with the size of your company. A super small start-up company may do well with a relatively small panel of just the very essential advisors. A small panel allows for decision-making to happen quickly and efficiently, allowing the company to implement changes and get back to work growing and developing.

But then as the company continues to grow into a mature firm, the Board should start to grow in size and diversity to reflect the growing needs of your organisation. With a larger company, it becomes increasingly essential to have a more diverse point of view and for decisions to be more carefully thought out.

That said, it can be equally as problematic if your Board has grown too much. Too many members and opinions can be almost impossible to manage, “too many cooks in the kitchen”, as the saying goes.

Lack of diversity

If your Board of Advisors embodies only one type of person, then it’s simple, you’ll only get one type of viewpoint. Instead, recruit Board members that represent everybody so that you can foster a diverse and inclusive workplace culture.

With a diverse, representative Board, your company can operate in the best way possible. Different voices and perspectives allow for proper growth, as together, you can come up with unique solutions and alternative opinions to tackle the complexities of today’s market. Nurturing a culture that allows ideas to bounce from person to person and where every voice gets heard allows your company to make excellent strategic decisions, guaranteeing a higher success rate as a result.

So, how do you get it right?

First up, building a perfect Board of Advisors that work collaboratively as a well-oiled machine is no easy feat.

When deciding who should be on your Board, a point to consider is to identify gaps in your current team’s skills and knowledge. Take your time searching for advisors who slot into your team and can add value, addressing areas in which you and your team have limited experience. Essentially, you’re hiring for your weak spots, making your Board well-rounded, agile, diverse and able to provide strategic solutions to your company’s unique challenges. This is key to ensuring your company’s success.

Your advisors will be with you for the long haul, not just a few months. So, it’s also essential to ensure that you’re comfortable with these people and that they can all think independently from one another to deliver multiple goals, strategies and solutions.

Let us do the hard work

From everything you’ve read, it’s clear that building your Board of Advisors can prove challenging. But there’s no need for it to be.

By outsourcing the recruitment of your leadership team to us, we can build the perfect Advisory Board and ensure all these previously mentioned mistakes become a problem of the past. Using superior talent acquisition technology, a developed network of high-profile specialists in the Biotech field and a team of experts who love doing what they do, we’re here to take the strain away from recruiting. We’ll take the time to get to know you and your business, so we can promise that we’ll match you with Board members that suit your individual requirements.

Committed to diversity and representation, we’ll source the best strategic thinkers, problem-solvers and decision-makers who represent everyone so that you can get the most out of your Board. This way, you’ll be well on your way to building a successful and prosperous Biotechnology business.

Published on 21-09-2022