Frequently Asked Questions about Client Advisory Boards
How much will it cost to host a Client Advisory Board?
The costs are straight forward and depend on the choices you make. Board Members are never financially compensated, so your costs include the venue you select and the professional support you want. Your Board will meet in a private space at a conference table. As Consultant and Board Moderator, NancyFoxProjects' time is billed either on an hourly rate or as part of a package we agree upon prior to starting. Clients who work with NancyFoxProjects enjoy a rich Return On Investment which can begin as soon as after the first Board meeting!
Do I need to hire a professional Moderator?
Hiring a professional Moderator is not a requirement to host a Client Advisory Board, however, there are several important benefits. The profesional Moderator has a very specific role in the meeting - to maintain the flow of the agenda and timing, encourage discussion by asking great questions, and deliver actionable feedback that will help the firm meet their objectives. Using a professional Moderator frees the host to listen and participate in the discussion. An experienced Moderator knows how to promote their host as the subject matter expert during the discussion, take responsibility for keeping the discussion on topic and ensuring every Member has the opportunity to participate.
Why would my client want to be part of my Advisory Board?
Clients RARELY refuse to be part of an Advisory Board. Why? First, NancyFoxProjects helps you select the right candidates. We provides guidance on how to organize your Board to best accomodate your Members. Your Board Members will want to help you succeed because they will be motivated by the chance to influence the growth of your business, optimize their own customer experience and network with interesting people.
Is a Client Advisory Board the same as a Focus Group?
A Client Advisory Board differs from a Focus Group in many ways. First, the objectives of the Advisory Board are to aid in meeting business objectives - often these are strategic discussions, information on industry trends, and insights on how to optimize the firm's performance. Next, membership on an Advisory Board is a multiple meeting commitment - typically a term of one year or more - that encourages Members to become motivated evangelists for the firm. Last, the Advisory Board is not financially compensated and can include not only clients but prospects, peers and providers of complementary services.
What's the difference between an Advisory Board and a Board of Directors?
Members of an Advisory Board are never financially compensated. An Advisory Board includes clients and can also include industry influencers and providers of complementary services. Both are serious, professional groups that periodically convene in person to discuss ways to help your firm succeed.
Don't customer surveys provide the same information?
While both surveys and an Advisory Board provide information to the business, there structure and (in our opinion), there usefulness are very different. A customer survey or questionnaire provides the business with one time responses to questions that the business (or a third party) deem important. It is often difficult to use the data collected in a decision making process because there is no opportunity for discussion. An Advisory Board is a discussion where participants are engaged to elaborate on topics, provide fresh insight and off
Can individuals other than clients participate in an Advisory Board?
Although the group is commonly known as a Client Advisory Board, often it can include non-client members. Board composition should be driven by the objectives of the business. Membership is determined based on the skills and experience needed to gather the information required. Influencers and representatives of providers of complementary services (e.g. an attorney may be asked to join the Board of a Financial Advisor) in order to meet business objectives.
How often does an Advisory Board meet?
An Advisory Board will typically meet on a quarterly basis for a minimum term of one year. Meetings are typically two to three hours in length. In addition to the commitment to meet, Board Members may also be asked to review information in advance of a meeting in order to be prepared for the discussion.
What topics do Advisory Boards discuss?
Board discussion topics are pre-determined by you and always focused on providing information that will help meet your business objectives. With NancyFoxProjects, there is a written time-bound agenda developed and circulated in advance of the meeting so all Members know what will be discussed. Notes are captured during each meeting so actionable feedback, insights and recommendations can be easily reviewed.