Hacker News new | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

It's usually a sign of lameness to have an official advisory board. If you look at the startups you admire, you'll find few have them.

Board members and (good) investors are always de facto advisors. And if you seem promising, people in the startup world will help you out for free. But it is not a good idea to have formal advisors who are neither board members nor investors.




I agree with all of pg's sentiments except for "it is not a good idea to have formal advisors who are neither board members nor investors."

Lots of great companies have formal advisors who are neither board members nor investors. I encourage entrepreneurs to turn proven smart + helpful people into advisors.

The board's primary task is governance, not advice. Lots of great advisors don't even want to deal with being on your board. pg is probably a good example of that.

I would also argue that, to some degree, YC is effectively acting as an advisor, not an investor. This is consistent with the fact that some/many? of the YC grads say that they would give YC the equity for free, just to participate in the program.

I'll write up detailed thoughts on Venture Hacks soon. I'm sure you're holding your breath. =)


I should clarify, we're not actually looking for an 'official board.' I guess a 'set of advisers' is more like it, loosely tied together. We already have a decent amount of advisers, but they range from VCs to my mom. What we were looking for were a few core advisers who can devote a bit of time and also have something at stake.Thanks for everyone's great comments.


I agree and I've been on advisory boards where we were neither board members, nor investors. Essentially I've been given small amounts of company stock just for my PR value + occasionally helping the company out. In the one case where I really help a company out I was a paid consultant and not an 'advisor'.


>But it is not a good idea to have formal advisors who are neither board members nor investors.

Stock is worthless anyways, why not give out a small amount of equity to people who help you out? Sure, lots of startups don't have advisory boards, but what's the harm in having stock-holding advisors?




Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: