This is the fourth in a series of blogs posts about my personal journey to putting a Board of Advisors together. To view all blog posts on our Board of Advisors please click here.

With my skills sets in hand, my Aileron consultant began sending me resumes for potential candidates. I was getting more excited, and even more nervous.  I really was going to take the plunge, no turning back now.

In the beginning, I scheduled only in-person meetings.  In-person meetings proved challenging, because some candidates were out of the region.  It took a lot of time to schedule and it wasn’t easy to coordinate lunch with busy people!  I wanted to go slow and make a good decision, but like any recruiting effort, other folks are looking for Board candidates too. If I didn’t pick up my pace, I was going to lose some great candidates.  After two months, I had screened dozens of resumes and interviewed eight candidates.  I had maybe two possible candidates.  To be quite honest, I was getting more confused than anything and felt I had lost my focus. 

I decided to abandon the idea of all face-to-face meetings and move to phone interviews.  I was worried I wouldn’t be able to get a good “read” on the candidates over the phone.  I knew that synergy and rapport were important to me.  These folks would be my advisors, so really clicking with them seemed critical.  How was I going to know if we “clicked” over the phone?

I did what I usually do when I am confused about the next steps; I picked up my journal and started to write.  I knew what skills sets I wanted, but were there other criteria that was easily discernable during a phone interview?  After writing for about 15 minutes, the obvious struck me.  Values! Everyone I was talking to was incredibly accomplished and talented, but if our values matched I knew we would make a great team.  I set my intention to find people who had similar values to me.

 As soon as I got clear on my criteria, the next 2 candidates I spoke with were a clear fit.   We had common values and I had great respect for their accomplishments.  All that was left now was a mountain of paperwork, tons of pre-work for me and setting a date.