Please Help Me to Find a Non-Executive Board Position

I am young ambitious person with a great international track record coaching startups and disrupting various industries.

Can you help me to find my first non-executive board position to bring my knowledge to the table?


  • +90

    I think this is one of those "if you have to ask" questions.

    • -22

      I am fairly new to Australia and every country has different ways to find board positions. As I've mentioned this would be my first position, everyone has to start somewhere. I trust and respect Ozbargain community. Therefore I wanted to ask here.

      • +99

        I'm pretty sure board members are headhunted from senior positions at other companies. You don't just 'apply' for a board position on Ozbargain. It's like asking us to find you a position as Batman.

        • +13

          It's not really our position to comment on things like this, but Strand0410, your comment might be the funniest comment on the internet. Ever. Or at least today. Sorry for the comedown. Now we all know how the OP feels :)

          However, as it happens, we actually do have a position available, as Batman. The pay isn't quite as lucrative as one may have been led to believe, however, the uniform is provided. It is a non-executive board position, and auditions for the prerequisite voice can be made by emailing us your mp3 file, with full CV and cover letter. We are an equal opportunity and Living Wage contract facilitator. Monkeys preferred of course, but all primates with Australian citizenship are welcome to apply.

          And you get a business card with Batman on it.

        • @sellingoutsoon:

          Don't forget your video résumé.

        • +1

          @sellingoutsoon: his comment was mildly amusing

        • +1

          @sellingoutsoon: Darn it I was hoping it would be for Darth Vader I have the voice down pat… can provide my own uniform sorry whoops wrong forum.

      • +1

        I am fairly new to Australia and every country has different ways to find board positions. As I've mentioned this would be my first position, everyone has to start somewhere. I trust and respect Ozbargain community. Therefore I wanted to ask here.

        Can you hang ten?

        • you think the board of most companies actually does that much? lol………….

          unless you are amazon or fortune 500, i seriously doubt the board do anything other than just the normal run of the mill / repetitive stuff and make some executive decisions here and there (ie to expand into what)

      • -1

        You wake-up the sleeping grumpy old men (& women) here!!! Wkwkwk

  • +46

    Let's hear the track record.

    By the way - disrupting various industries is just a trendy terms to use. It means nothing and if I took it literally (which I am inclined to) then this is nothing good. Companies do not want disruptive, they want innovative, creative, and smart. Terrorists are disruptive too (especially to travel and tourism industries) - would you employ them?

    Also, if you are young, how can you have any experience coaching other businesses? It makes no sense - all knowledge just book knowledge and if that is the case, getting the books is cheaper than you.

    Fully agree with airzone - if you have to ask on Ozbargain you are far, far from ready to be on any kind of board (maybe a surfboard or snowboard would be possible).

    I am also considering the possibility that this is a simple troll post.

    • -20

      Thank you for a reply.

      I am looking for a genuine advice on where to find these positions. I would be happy to share my track record with members who can realistically help. I am fairly new to Australia, young, (30+) with relevant experience and qualifications.

      • +23

        I am …. young

        Would never have guessed that!! LOL

      • +26

        According to when you registered you have been in Oz for about 18 months.

        Also, if your abilities do not enable you to find those positions, then I do not believe a word you say and personally would not stick my neck out for you.

        It seems to me that you would like one of those positions handed to you on a platter.

        Furthermore, you got it the wrong way around. If you do not tell us your qualifications and experience you cannot get any adequate advice and no one will be willing to help you.

        Being so vague makes you sound very dodgy and like a troll I am afraid.

        Finally, if you are new as you say you are , don't you think being young as you mention you should maybe start somewhere at the bottom or in the middle rather than at a fairly high level - comes across as a bit cocky to come to OZ, be new, and ask for a high level position to be handed to you.

        Think about what the first poster said: if you have to ask here, how good can your skills and abilities be (especially research skills which are a very important part of coaching and advising businesses, in particular start-ups)? Would you hire someone who cannot do their own research?

        • +1

          Great job here.

        • +3

          Being so vague makes you sound very dodgy and like a troll I am afraid.

          I don't think he's a troll, just has delusions of grandeur. He says 'everyone must start somewhere' and this would be his 'first position,' and somehow believes he deserves to leapfrog everyone else start and at the top because of some job-seeking cliches.

      • young, (30+) with relevant experience and qualifications.

        So how old are you?

      • I am looking for a genuine advice on where to find these positions. I would be happy to share my track record with members who can realistically help. I am fairly new to Australia, young, (30+) with relevant experience and qualifications.

        I can realistically help.


        Now for your track record…

  • +43

    This sounds dodgy. I like it. Proceeds to eat popcorn.

    • +3

      I'll bring the beers. Someone called the bikies over yet?

      • Paging /u/altomic

    • Newman?

  • +5

    I don't get it.
    Why would someone want a position that makes them bored?

    • +3

      See that's what I thought, but then I reread the post and realised it said 'board' position.

      So presumably it's some sort of work at a lumbermill.

      • +2

        Could it be a Non-Executive Surfboard Board?

        Otherwise, yes, Lumberjack.

        • +4

          Actually I think he meant Discussion Board.
          He's obviously trying to become a mod on Ozbargain.

  • +24

    Ignoring OP's suitability for a second, I don't think a Board position is something you just apply for on Seek.

    You're usually invited or sought out by the current board - so it's very much a friends of friends situation.

    I'd love to be on a company/non-profit board (who wouldn't!) - you get paid to attend a couple of catered meetings a year.

    So OP, if you find something, sign us up!

  • +13

    I was on the board of a regional health service for 3 years in my early 30s. Creating policy for the region's hospital and aged care service for a population of >65,000. It was interesting. And looks interesting on my resume. I was lucky in obtaining the position by being in the right place at the right time. Regional also had less demand for such positions (still competitive though). The board position was found on the health service's website. Board positions in cities are generally extremely competitive and seldom come up. Which industry are you wanting to enter?

  • +11

    to bring my knowledge to the table

    The cynical among us might say - To put my snout into the trough

  • +29

    While we're in the topic of finding positions, can someone help me find a way to take over the world? I am also young and ambitious.

    • +23

      Do you have a great international track record coaching startups and disrupting various industries?

      • +9

        I have a great international track record in coaching soldiers and militia and disrupting various industries, particularly politics and national security.

        • +19

          I recommend the documentaries of Professor Pinky and the Brain. Very informative for such cause.

        • @Kangal:
          Memo: Take over World tomorrow.

    • +7

      I was thinking about starting a thread about how to become a famous movie star.

      • +1

        That's easy if you're well endowed or is good looking. All depends on what kind of movie you're talking about! ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

  • +1

    I am just wondering why you wanted to do this?
    I am guessing that you are looking for a job in Australia and haven't found one yet, so you figured that this is one way to do it?

    There are other ways to get a job (e.g. SEEK), but I acknowledge it can be tough for a recent migrant.

  • +29

    From "I need to charge for a consulting services, just once" to non exec board member in 2 months. Seems fairly logical :)

    • +13

      For someone who doesnt know how to send an invoice….what sort of management advice do you think you can give anyway.

    • +7

      In fairness, none of the board execs I've met would have been able to raise their own invoice

      • +1

        Oh poppycock!

    • +12

      If this guy did get selected to be on a board, all of the decisions he needs to make would end up being OzBargain Forum Posts!

      • +1

        Yeah, my responses to those kind of questions are usually whatever the magic eight ball tells me. lol

        • +1

          In a way… I want him to get on-board (ba dum tsh).

          That way we, OzBargainers, can puppeteer him into making certain decisions.
          I think it'll be fun. We're gonna have a long and fulfilling friendship you and us : )

    • Just found out OzBargain is… Delvu Media Pty Ltd

    • Wow that's an impressive turnaround for 2 months.

  • +11

    i hear Australia Post is looking for someone.

    • +3

      No. They are looking for an executive, not a non-executive board member.

  • +85

    I am on the board of a non-profit community group. It is unpaid.
    I know of many other groups who would be keen to have additional board members.
    They expect board members to be involved in the work of the group, attend meetings and contribute a lot of time and energy.
    It isn't about padding out your resume.

    I presume with your buzzword wank…er…"international track record coaching start ups and disrupting various industries" you would be more comfortable with a position which is more glamorous with more scope for self promotion.
    I would suggest attending networking events like shared workspace events like fisburners, conferences such as Startcon, or some of the start-up incubators around the place.

    Note in Australia board positions come with substantial liability. You can personally be sued or prosecuted if you act negligently.
    Being on a board is a serious responsibility, and I tend to feel people whose motivation to be there is to fill out their Linkedin profile are probably not well qualified.

    • +6

      Top contribution. Could not have said it better, definitely not as nicely as you have!

      • +1

        I have a feeling that when he says "international track record" it means that he's worked in Taiwan and China, and possibly Hong Kong.
        Not really the entrepreneur you would picture from the movies.

        I've got one of those in my workplace, and this guy's nose scrapes the sky.
        Yet, when I ask him technical questions, even when I know the answer, he always "will get back to me". And when I ask him to sort something out for our business, it's always 7 weeks late after reminding him 3 times. But I think he's related to the founder, so…..

        • +4

          I have that feeling too. Fits in with having to ask for even the most mundane "business activities" such as raising an invoice or looking for a job.
          Now I have to tell all my friends in personnel departments to include a "Are you a member of Ozbargain, and if so, what is your handle" question to ensure that they do not hire someone who has a great international track record coaching startups and disrupting various industries. ;-)

    • +8

      Cannot upvote this enough!

      Have a look at AICD's website to get a bit of a sense of all the obligations and personal liabilities associated with being on a board in Australia. This makes even people with strong executive experience, proven skills and great networks think twice about taking on a board role.

      Keep in mind, in the not-for-profit sector you won't get paid and you put your personal assets on the line in case things go wrong - and they often do, usually because other board members/staff care more about the cause than about being able to figure out the solvency position of the organisation from the balance sheets.

      In the for-profit sector, board members are expected to bring in significant commercial/industry acumen/networks/etc. In other words, strong differentiation/insights that allow you shape the strategy/risk profile of the business because you know (or are expected to know ) how the business will make significant money/achieve success, etc. I'm not talking about what you learned from Porter's 5 forces model or those SWOT analyses you did at uni or as a hotshot disrupting industries, I mean the real dynamics of a sector, be it technology change, market dynamics, regulatory opportunities, competitive intelligence, etc.

      And you do this while, again, putting your personal assets on the line for a pay that's likely orders of magnitude lower than the executives working in the company and coming up with decisions by consensus/committee…

  • +2

    I can customise a track on my printed circuit board for you. LOL.

  • +3

    Maybe team fusion @ kyani could use a young go-getter like yourself.

  • +2

    Try Grays online, they need help from anyone…..

  • +17

    Vandelay Industries is your best shot

    • +1

      He's definitely Penske material

  • +2

    I have this on my executive suite

    What can you bring to the table in a corporate hostile takeover ?

  • +5

    I hereby appoint you as Ozbargain's Eneloop Advisory Board Chairman of thread 296994.

  • +28

    I am on the National Bank of Nigeria board.
    I am here to offer you a position on our board.
    We will pay you US$20,000,000.00 for the first year, with possible bonuses.
    Please forward your bank, tax file and credit card details, as well as a copy of your passport and birth certificate

    • +1

      Surely you will be sending the first year's board fees in advance but because of some pesky international money laundering laws you might need the board applicant to help pay a few thousand upfront via Western Union….you'll pay them back of course.

  • Sorry OP, but I wouldn't bother until you have 20 years of actual career and network. Board positions aren't advertised ;)

  • +15

    So putting OP's statement through my dejargoniser app, I get:

    I am young ambitious person: I need to pay the rent soon
    with a great international track record coaching startups: I showed some friends how to buy stuff cheap from eBay
    and disrupting various industries: all my previous bosses gave me a recommendation that said "you will be lucky to get him to work for you"


    • +23

      disrupting various industries

      Uber driver.

  • +9

    To get a Board position, all you need to do is be born very rich and have a lot of very rich friends and relatives. If you haven't done this, don't worry; you may be able to get one through an outstandingly successful multi-decade career (though there's no guarantees going this route, you usually still need the rich friends).

  • +3

    This guy is a better troll than me.. now I officially feel old..

  • +2

    Have you done the Company Directors' Course. Highly recommended not just for the knowledge and skills, but also the networks. And go from there.

  • +1

    Obviously trolling, he hasn't replied since this morning. Come on guys, lets move one and close this thread.

    • +1

      The 'non-executive' part was worth the price of admission. I want to go straight to the golden parachute part.

  • +10

    “Cousin Eddie”

    Ellen: “Well, he’s been out of work for close to seven years.”
    Clark: “In seven years, he couldn’t find a job?”
    Ellen: “Catherine says he’s been holding out for a management position.”

    • pure gold

    • Griswold!

  • +1

    OP this isn't a role you apply for. You need to be in the know with the right people and get approached.

    I would love to work as a non exec director but I think this comes after being a board member on successful companies over many years. Most board members are older.

    Good luck anyhow mate - shoot for the stars i say

  • +5

    First of all do a company director's course with AICD.

    • +6

      What he meant to say…

      Do a company directors course with ACID. You'll have the time of your life.

  • +6

    Great! I have a business that needs a new board member. The business is having a few problems with the tax man over 5 years of so called "unpaid taxes". Anyway, we'd love to have someone come on board (pardon the pun) and sort this out for us. In fact if you have relevant experience then I'd love to just let you deal with it all and I'll resign from the board.

    • +3

      You dont live on the harbour do you?

      The bottom is only a few metres away….

      For the OP

      Welcome to Australia and our droll sense of humour, essential for survival here.

      Far better it be at ozbargain than in a real job. At least you can start afresh with the life experience you have gained today.

  • What do you have to offer a board? Experience and a real track record of achievements?

    The only young people that really stand a chance would be the successful entrepreneurs such as Mark Zuckerberg and the Atlassian boys etc.
    Easier decision when someone has been working in XXXX industry for 30 odd years and has that under their belt.

  • +2

    Next question, how to be become a prime minister or better question how to be the president of Australia! :D

    • Isn't the OP's question more like directly becoming emeritus Pope to avoid the foot kissing part.

    • Actually, I would like to know this!

  • +3

    I'd estimate at least 70% of OP's post are buzz words

  • +8

    Easy. Get an analyst job at Westpac and buy an $80k car, as it's an investment with high yield.

  • Go an executive role first so you gain the local experience

    I think it's a great aspiration in your 30s but unless you're Ashley Kutcher then it's unlikely a board will punt on you versus a local with strong executive director type experience

    Why even do this at this stage of your career? I'd keep building and max your salary (unless you really already have)!

  • +2

    Become a pollie

  • -3

    Dear OZ community - thanks to everyone for the contributions and advices! Great discussion - humbly appreciated!

    • aka, I can't find an easy way to make money, and think a board position is were you sit around a large table and get paid without any responsibility.

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