You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.
In the age of startups, the young CEO might sound like a hero and the old men on the Board of Directors might sound like villains. According to the popular perception, they are a bunch of evil old bankers who try to throttle the creative genius of the heroic CEO. They block his grand moves, pinch pennies, and take over the company that the genius had built from scratch and they throw him out. After all, according to the most common perception, this is what they did to Steve Jobs in the US and to Rahul Yadav in India.
So who exactly are the board of directors? What do they do? Does a business really need them?Are they really the villains? Let’s find out.
For the uninitiated, the board of directors does not run the company. They are the ones who give guidance to the CEO on critical matters. They are typically the representatives of the investors and ensure that the company does the right thing, and course correct the CEO should the need be.
Even the CEO needs a BOSS
It is said that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. In an era where corporate ethics are bottoming out and star CEOs are running amuck ,the board is required more than ever.They keep the interests of the investors, customers, and employees in mind and only then approve grand schemes.
And for most of the part they are not the devil worshippers they are made out to be. With all due respect, Steve Jobs was running Apple into the ground and without a board of directors,he would have killed the company soon. Rahul Yadav, the “bad boy of Indian business” or the out-of-control IITian was becoming an embarrassment to the company, feeding wrong information to the media, and insulting other entrepreneurs and, sometimes, even the board. Rahul resigned in an offending manner after having insulted the board in the worst possible way. Can you blame the board now?