Advisor Insights with Jerome Chasques

Advisor Insights

Published 02 July 2024

French business leaders are now ready to welcome support and fresh perspectives to navigate today’s increasingly complex environment


Jérôme Chasques is a seasoned entrepreneur with a 25 year track record of building businesses across US and Europe.  Most recently, he has turned his focus to helping other business leaders and entrepreneurs achieve their growth ambitions with the guided support of best practice advisory boards.  As Certified Chairs™, Jérôme and business partner Stéphane Benoist are dedicated to supporting French speaking professionals globally access high quality, trusted advisory board resources and training through Advisory Board France, a collaboration with the Advisory Board Centre.

Known for driving success in both international and domestic business environments, Jérôme shares his insights into the growing adoption of advisory boards in France and Europe in this Advisor Insights conversation with Advisory Board Centre CEO Udo Doring.

Key Insights

  • Growing enterprises in France can learn from the success of leaders such as Airbus, Danone, Sanofi, and Hermes, that have implemented advisory boards to drive innovation and sustainability
  • Managing directors are more open to seeking external help, and experienced professionals are interested in becoming advisors – creating a robust emerging market in Europe
  • Education and best practice is paramount to achieve high quality and impactful results


Read the transcript

Udo Doring:

Good afternoon everyone. I’m very pleased to have Jerome with me from Advisory Board France today, and to mark the launch of Advisory Board France, we thought it’d be helpful to do a bit of a deep dive into what’s happening in France and the broader European sector for advisory boards. So Jèrôme, thank you very much for joining today. I wanted to start off by asking what are you seeing in the advisory board sector in France broadly?

Jèrôme Chasques:

Thank you Udo for having me here today. We’re very glad to speak about all this with you. Yeah, it’s a very interesting market. I think the French market and more largely the European market, is kind of eager to push forward really the advisory board sector. Why? Because we’re in a very risky environment. Obviously in continental Europe, a lot of companies, a lot of CEOs, a lot of founders are really wondering what the next stages for their business will be. And right now in France, people are not so well aware of what is exactly an advisory board. A lot of them are aware of executive governance, what a statutory board is, and sometime they hear about advisory board, but it’s mostly for startups. And a lot of these companies have their shareholders and investors in this board, so they don’t always know exactly the difference. So it’s our job here in France to explain to them the value of an advisory board, the methodology behind it, and the difference and the value they could really get out of it. So it’s a very interesting moment right now in France.

Udo Doring:

Fantastic. There’s a lot of higher profile examples of advisory boards in the corporatized sector that we’re seeing. I wondered if you could talk about some of those larger organizations in France and what you’re seeing in that space.

Jèrôme Chasques:

In a way, larger organizations, maybe a little bit more aware of what’s going on, especially coming from the US for example. So a lot of them are very open to have maybe projects, advisory boards. Let’s take a few examples. Airbus, for example, as one about operations working also on the innovation aspect. We have Danon who is working on the nutrition aspect, who have a project advisory board about and around sustainability and some other companies like Sanofi, Hermes. I think these companies are exposed to the international markets and the way they are exposed. I think that really entice them to open really their mind into putting together advisory boards, whether they are, as I mentioned, project advisory board or next chain advisory boards to really push forward talents. So this is really a very interesting avenue. And maybe Udo just for those who are listening to us, I could add something because here we mentioned about the corporatized advisory board, but the market basically that we are addressing as well is really the business sector. And to give just a few numbers, the business sector in France, if we’re talking about, for example, businesses that have at least 50 employees, we’re talking about 60,000, I’m sorry, 36,000 companies. Just to give you an example. And if we’re just narrowing down to, for example, the ones who have more than 250 employees, we’re talking about 6,000 companies. So just to give you an example of what’s the market is about for who anyone, to anyone who wants to start as a board advisor.

Udo Doring:

Fantastic. And Jèrôme, finally, what’s your outlook for the advisory board sector in France? What do you see in the next 12, 24 months in France, but perhaps also in Europe?

Jèrôme Chasques:

Well, the outlook was good for maybe three reasons. One, again, the context is so complex for, again, managing directors that they are much more open at having people to come along and try to help them see things they did better, and in a way, clarify the way they can make their decisions. Second, you have a lot of very, very experienced CEOs, managing directors, HR people who may no longer be in the corporatized world and really want to share their experience. They want to share their experience, they want to be confronted to other CEOs. And that’s a very good aspect because a lot of people, a lot of these people want to really become advisors. And third, there is not yet a lot of structure in all that. So I think there is a real request expectation for getting a methodology, getting tools, knowing really how to master basically the fact of putting together an advisory board and having as much impact as possible.

Udo Doring:

Fantastic. It’s a really exciting time in the sector, but also I think the outlook in your part of the world is really quite bright. So thank you very much for sharing, and we look forward to having future conversations and diving a little bit further into Advisory Board France and its ecosystem.

Jèrôme Chasques:

Thank you.