The utimate dream team Advisory Board an entrepreneur could have…

Written by: Leslie Fishlock // August 7th, 2009 // News

When in the course of human events, as an entrepreneur, working day, night, and weekends on your business, or your “baby” as frenzied entrepreneurs like myself will apt to call it, and after you have finally gotten to the point and suddenly realize that you really don’t know everything, something clicks in your noggin and you start thinking logically instead of emotionally. You start thinking of big picture instead of tunnel vision. You – literally – start asking for help.

You start actually believing what all those business books and blog posts by successful business people, that maybe what you really need is the opinions of others, advice or guidance from some others who may have already made these same mistakes before, or perhaps some motivation from people who believe in you because they like you and what you are doing, or maybe even some ass-kicking by people who think you have not done enough, and peppered with some lecturing by the financial guys who hold some hefty purse strings who may not think your “baby” is worth it, and scores of successful ventures behind them who wouldn’t even loan their mother a dime unless they could triple the investment on it, and and most of all, people who will not lie to you.

Sounds awesome, right? Well, it does if you can take the heat and secure some honest assessment of whether your business or project or application is worthy or just another unimpressive after-thought. Or just plain horse hooey.

Well, I for one would welcome that for this latest entrepreneurial venture I started, Geek Girl Camp. Now, I am not adverse to making my own mistakes and taking what I know and making this successful. I know this will be. With or without an advisory board. But, I want it all. I want to stand on the shoulders of giants, as Newton did, and I want to make it the best it can be with the best people behind me. And faster. Let’s be honest with ourselves. If you are not going into something to make money, not many people are going to listen to you and get involved. Even if you are philanthropic in your end results, like we have been. You need a strategy.

So what I have done is compile my ultimate wish list of an Advisory Board for Geek Girl Camp below comprised of some of the top Internet, business, finance, legal and others any sane entrepreneur would give their arm and leg to have guide them in the right direction with honesty, guidance, advice and perhaps even some pointers on how they would run things if they were in charge. I have also listed ONE word that I believe they would teach me.

And believe me, this list will evolve as I believe there are many people out there I should be listening to that I have much to learn from. But, I had to start somewhere.

Caveat: Mind you, I am not expecting anyone below to actually say yes, but I’ve got nothing else to lose besides getting in their Twitter stream of consciousness and letting them know Geek Girl Camp and I do exist…

So, who would you recommend for me that is not on this list, or who would you have on your dream team advisory board? And why? And what defining word am I missing that it takes to succeed?

Roll Call:

Chris Sacca, Venture Investor, Company Advisor, and Adventure Junkie – He is also a lawyer and worked at Google. He likes triathlons. What better person to get you financially and mentally into shape? TENACITY.

Howard Lindzon, Investor, Hedge Fund Manager  – I must admit, for full disclosure, I work with Howard on a project with my first entrepreneurial venture, Genevate. We work on StockTwits. Why I would like to have Howard on board is that he knows that it’s not always about the investment, but investing in the people. And the best people will always do the right thing. And he’s funny as hell and will make even the bad days be fun. CHUTZPAH.

Fred Wilson
, VC and Principal of Union Square Ventures – Fred invests in great companies. He sees the future of the web and not only understands it, he believes in it passionately and endeavors to be a part of it. His blogs are well worth reading and his insight is invaluable. He also tells it like it is – even if it is not all glamorous. He gives us warts and all. HONESTY .

Jeff Pulver
, Entrepreneur – I like to refer to Jeff as the nicest guy on the Internet and have had the honor of working with him on the 140 Characters Conference. He is also a very brilliant person, shrewd businessman and entrepreneur. He always remembers who you are – a rarity these days indeed – and lives to support entrepreneurs. LOYALTY.

Tony Hsieh
, CEO Zappos – Tony is a legend in running a successful company from the ground up, excelling at customer service standards and one of the nicest and most available people online. Don’t take the nice to mean he is not a killer at business. Just ask Amazon. CONSISTENCY.

Tim O’Reilly, O’Reilly Media – Tim has the best books on computer technology, is a tireless advocate for the semantic web and he believes in a totally wired world. He also puts on great events. They are also great sponsors already of Geek Girl Camp and if anyone can teach me how to put on a real show, it’s him. COLLABORATION.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon – Besides starting and still at the helm of one of the oldest web companies still in existence that survived the dot-com bust, recession, and mad competition, Jeff has remained a top player in the game. It’s not just the books anymore. His foray into all things “storage”, cloud computing and the gotta have Kindle is evidence enough he can see the next thing coming around the bend. He is a tireless innovator. He sees wired people. VISION.

Meg Whitman
, Former CEO of eBay – Meg is on here because she was one of the first women running a tech company. There are not a lot of them, but I certainly want her take on how she managed life in the fast lane and kept her family together as well as talk about her time with the Interwebs. And how she kicked ass. BALANCE.

Pete Cashmore
, Mashable – What can a 24 year old blogging-publishing hotshot teach a 44 year old? Plenty. Remembering what I was like at his age and what I might have been thinking. And being able to see things through the eyes of someone younger in a business where his generation defines the Internet Age. (And the fact he’s not too shabby to look at over the conference table.) OPPORTUNITY.

Jack and Suzy Welch - The First couple of Business. Jack Welch has more to teach me in 2 minutes stuck with him in an elevator about being in business then anyone I can think of. And Suzy knows business, too. Together they are indefatigable. They get two words, GUTS and SAVVY.

Lance Armstrong
– Why not? What can a cancer survivor, 7 time Tour de France champion and iconic superhero teach me?  HUMILITY.

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  • barbaraoliver
    great-very well conceived.
  • Leslie,
    If you are serious about assembling an advisory board, look for the soon to be published Advisory Board Kit: A Comprehensive Guide to Establishing an Advisory Board. I will be launching the guide and a related teleclass in late September early October.

    Susan C Hammond
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