0. Raza Shaikh and Joe Ayoub: Genesis of the On Boards Podcast

Co-hosts Raza Shaikh and Joe Ayoub discuss the January 2020 launch of their podcast On Boards Podcast: A Deep Dive at Driving Business Success.

A company’s Board of Directors or Advisors often has a pivotal role in the success or failure of a business, whether a company or organization lives or dies – – and whether the people who have invested time, money and emotional capital will succeed.

On Boards Podcast: A Deep Dive at Driving Business Success, is about everything related to Boards of Directors and Boards of Advisors. Twice a month, in 30 minutes, hear and learn about all aspects of boards and business governance.

In each episode co-hosts Raza Shaikh and Joe Ayoub interview a guest who has experience with boards – as a board member, a CEO, an investor or an advisor, among other roles, for a conversation on a wide range of topics including:
• What makes great boards great?
• What makes a board unsuccessful?
• How to be a good board member?
• How make your board one of the most valuable assets of your company.
They discuss public, private, non-profit and start-ups (which they believe is its own category) boards – the work they do, the impact they have and their potential to be profoundly impactful on the organization they serve.

On Boards Podcast is for anyone who is a board member, would like to serve on a board, is an owner of a business, a member of a non-profit organization, an investor in a business or is interested in Board of Directors or Boards of Advisors or business governance.

Episode Transcript:

[00:00:00] Joe: [00:00:00] Hello, and welcome to On Boards, a deep dive at driving business success. Hi, my name is Joe Ayoub and I’m here with my cohost Raza Shaikh. Hey Raza.

Raza: [00:00:11] Hi Joe. Happy to be here with you. Co-hosting.

Joe: [00:00:14] Actually, this is the promo for a podcast that Raza and I are planning to launch in early 2020 called onboards podcast.

It’s not about board games, gaming, ACEing. The GREs or betting on college football. It’s about boards of directors and advisors. Raza Could you tell our listeners a little bit about what we plan to cover.

Raza: [00:00:38] Joe, we’re planning to have guests cover a broad range of topics all around boards for public company boards, private company boards, startups.

We think that’s a category of its own   as well as nonprofit boards.

Joe: [00:00:52] we agree that while there are differences in the role of board plays in each of those types of entities, it will be [00:01:00] interesting. As to what is common in terms of good board performance that cut across all types of organizations.

So Raza what’s driving your interested in co-hosting this podcast with me?

Raza: [00:01:14] Joe, I’ve been involved with boards and I find it very intriguing that boards are such a complex topic and such an important asset to a company. I thought, wouldn’t it be wonderful to have guests on the podcast with whom we can talk about board topics and we learn from them and our listeners also learn from them.

Joe: [00:01:34] Yes like you one of my motivations is to learn. I’m fascinated

Raza: [00:01:38] by boards,

Joe: [00:01:39] I think they often determine the success or failure of a business, whether a company lives or dies. And whether people who have invested time, money and emotional capital will succeed.

So I do hope to learn from the guests that we will meet and interview what made their board work or not [00:02:00] work. And you and I have discussed that sometimes we learn even more from situations when things did not work.

Raza: [00:02:07] For sure. Joe, wouldn’t it be fascinating to have been a fly on the wall for the WeWork board or CBS or Tesla or maybe even Enron?

Joe: [00:02:18] Absolutely. Let’s put it this way. If you’re a board member, the thing you most want to avoid is the type of situation that played each of those companies, especially given the recent article in the wall street journal about we work board.

If you’re a board member. You don’t want to be a member of a board that has an article like that written about you. So learning about what happened and what they went through would be pretty interesting. And I would say very informative.

So Raza what else made you to decide to cohost this podcast with me?

Joe: [00:02:55] Did you decide to just take on the project of helping a non tech person like [00:03:00] me understand the technology of podcasting.

Raza: [00:03:04] Joe technology’s affecting everything, and now it looks like that podcasting is a medium that people can enjoy listening to whatever their favorite topic is , while driving or while in between meetings. And I thought that that medium ought to be brought to the board conversation.  technology is a little part of it, and I’m a old is happy to.

Learn a few new tricks on how to produce podcasts.

Joe: [00:03:34] Well, that part of it has been really interesting for me.

I’ve really been fascinated by the process of learning the basics of podcasting. And while I’ve been aware of the explosion of podcasts. I wasn’t

Raza: [00:03:49] fully

Joe: [00:03:50] aware of the extent to which they have proliferated And yet I’ve seen very little out there about boards like the podcast we’ve created. Have [00:04:00] you, and I’m curious if you haven’t, why do you think that is?

Raza: [00:04:04] That’s a, that’s a great question.  Joe, and I think that’s one of the primary reasons for us to decide to do this podcast I think a, there is some content in terms of podcasts about boards, but that’s mostly one way broadcast stuff, educational materials. , I haven’t seen a podcast where you interview a guest and that’s what we think we will bring , to the board community, , where. You know, you learn by talking, you, bring those experiences, , that others have had,  and make that a little more efficient in terms of people , who can benefit from that.

What about you, Joe? What, , what else motivated you to create this podcast?

Joe: [00:04:45] You know, my sense is that boards can be so valuable and yet so often they’re not. it’s as if a lot of companies run their boards on autopilot, they wind it up and they let the board go without the thought [00:05:00] and attention it needs to really add value. . Boards should be adding enterprise value, and yet if you don’t do the things that are necessary to make the board work properly, you’re not getting that benefit.

A lot of times it’s worse than autopilot. Companies have boards and don’t appreciate what they can do. It’s like having a really high end sports car and then driving 55 miles an hour. What’s the point? Why do you have the car?

I want to ask sometimes.Why do you have a board? It’s not just to get people together. It has a.  potentially pivotal role in your company’s success. And yet so many companies don’t focus on it as they do other essential parts of their company.

Joe: [00:05:51] And then of course, so many private companies don’t even have a board.

Joe: [00:05:54] I consider it an essential element of a great company, and I’m sure you do.

Yet some [00:06:00] owners and founders are wary. To stretch the automobile analogy, it’s like saying, let’s just keep the horse and carriage. No need for those new fangled automobiles. They’re nothing but trouble. Lot of work, lot of maintenance, but they just get you someplace faster. which is exactly the point.

The pace at which you can achieve success with a group of talented outsiders giving you and your senior team good advice, sharing their skills and expertise. It’s invaluable.

Raza: [00:06:40] Well said, Joe  even if a small segment of our listeners sees the potential of a board in a different light, that is an effective and productive board. That will be pretty cool.

Joe: [00:06:52] so we’re going to speak with a wide range of guests, and my hope is that among them, we’ll be able to address a lot of these

[00:07:00] Raza: [00:06:59] questions.

Joe: [00:07:00] What makes a great board?

Raza: [00:07:02] great.

Joe: [00:07:03] What makes a board unsuccessful? How to be a good board member and how to make your board. One of the most valuable assets of your company.

There are probably a wide range of people that can help us have those conversations.

Raza: [00:07:18] Joe I believe that many people want to do more board work?

And this would be a good learning opportunity to hear from people that have already gone through these experiences and this would be a wonderful resource to them.

Joe: [00:07:33] I hope so, and I think we can do that.

So everyone onboards podcast is where you should be to hear about all aspects of governance twice a month in less than 30 minutes. This is the place to learn about one of the most critically important aspects of any company or organization, its board of directors or advisors.

We hope you will tune into our [00:08:00] podcast onboards a deep look at driving business success. Beginning January, 2020 thanks. Thank you, Raza.

Raza: [00:08:10] Thank you Joe.