Startup Expert Brad Feld Advises Entrepreneurs How to Build a Powerful Board in New Kauffman Founders School Series

Serial entrepreneur and angel investor Brad Feld, a partner in private equity firm Foundry Group, shares insights in eight-video series

(KANSAS CITY, Mo.) Jan. 21, 2015 – Startup business owners may understand the benefits of a board of directors that contributes to the company's growth, but how to construct and manage an effective board is not so well understood. A Kauffman Founders School video series released today teaches entrepreneurs how to build and configure boards that help their companies thrive.

The "Startup Boards" series features insights from Brad Feld, a serial entrepreneur and early-stage investor since 1987. Feld, a nationally recognized blogger and speaker on venture capital investing and entrepreneurship, believes entrepreneurs should define their desired board member characteristics with the same rigor they would devote to hiring senior executives.

In his eight-video Kauffman Founders School series releasing over the next seven weeks, Feld shares his understanding of how boards work and offers practical advice that helps startup owners decide:

  • When to establish a board of directors and how to define its role.
  • How to form and organize a startup board, including choosing an appropriate number of board members and determining how to compensate them.
  • How to deliberately select board members who represent diversity in thought, backgrounds, gender, ethnicity and experience.
  • How to recruit board members – sometimes from outside of existing networks – who bring additive skills and experience, and how to complete due diligence on prospective members.
  • How to run board meetings to maximize members' engagement and contributions.
  • How to communicate with clarity to gain the greatest benefits of the board's thinking and expertise.
  • How to work with the board to manage company transitions, such as selling the company or undertaking an IPO.

Teaching entrepreneurs best practices in areas not typically covered in other training programs, Kauffman Founders School enables entrepreneurs to learn anywhere, anytime, and to immediately apply the lessons to their businesses. Other Founders School topics include:

  • The Lean Approach and Startups, presented by Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur Steve Blank.
  • Entrepreneurial Selling, presented by Craig Wortmann, CEO and founder, Sales Engine, and clinical professor at the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business                       
  • Powerful Presentations, presented by Nathan Gold, founder, The Demo Coach.
  • Entrepreneurial Marketing, featuring Anita Newton, a long-time marketing expert and vice president of corporate marketing with Adknowledge.
  • The Art of Startup Finance, featuring Bill Reichert, who founded several Silicon Valley-based software companies and now runs Garage Technology Ventures, a seed-stage and early-stage venture capital firm.

The online education program is housed on the Kauffman Foundation's Entrepreneurship.org web platform, which offers resources, educational information and tools for entrepreneurs. It can be accessed at www.KauffmanFoundersSchool.org or via www.Entrepreneurship.org.