What Makes a Good Advisor?
7 Qualities You Want (and That We’ll Provide)
Most people wouldn’t embark on a long journey without a solid plan. Nor should they make important and far-reaching business decisions without seeking some good advice beforehand.
That’s precisely why many smart CEOs, presidents, and company leaders seek counsel from a trusted resource—a business advisor (or advisory board). While these advisors have no authority to vote on matters (like a Board of Directors), nor do they have any legal or fiduciary responsibility, their expertise and experience can bring valuable insight to the decision-making process, and provide company leaders with sound advice to solve business challenges or reach new goals.
At Cerius Executives, one of our top requests in today’s business environment is for advisory resources. And we’re happy to help. Our years of experience placing interim, part-time/fractional and project-based leaders demonstrate our ability to find the right talent for the right time – including advisors.
If you need a business advisor, we know the best qualities to look for—and how to find the right match for your company, culture, and industry. Here are a few of the essential qualities your advisor will have:
Deep Business Knowledge
You want an advisor who has strong industry expertise that can help with strategic planning and help you avoid missteps. Their experience often means access to a larger professional network, too. In some cases, after a lengthy conversation, we find that deep industry knowledge is hurting the company and a new perspective is needed. An advisor with relevant industry experience who can share new and unexplored opportunities or best practices may be a better fit for the businesses’ needs.
Beyond being comfortable with sharing private information, you want to know the advisor has your businesses’ best interests in mind. There is no personal or promotional agenda. You can trust they are telling you the truth, not holding back, or providing guidance that best benefits you and your company.
Strong Communication Skills
This includes the ability to both listen and speak effectively. These skills help your advisor gather the right information, and also communicate their ideas and advice clearly. Often times, their ability to listen can help you finally effectively convey to those around you what is swirling around in your head.
Sometimes the topics on which advisors give advice are emotional in nature (like with family businesses or long-held business visions). Having compassion helps your advisor provide guidance in a manner that will be appreciated and well-received.
A good advisor can also translate your ideas into action – someone who actually greases the wheels and participates in the solution, where appropriate.
The best advisors don’t just tell you the answer. Often the best way to help is to ask powerful questions that can help a leader think differently and question his or her own assumptions.
If your advisor doesn’t understand the personality, passion, and purpose of your company, their guidance is more likely to miss the mark. It’s vital that your advisor embodies the right “fit” for your business. They should align well with the key leaders and team members.
We can find the right advisor for you.
If you can use the guidance of a strong advisor, we’ll get to work finding the right one. Raise your hand today, and let us do what we do best.