Published 20 October 2022

Best practice for advisory boards is to appoint an independent Chair. The role of the Chair is to establish and facilitate a formal advisory board structure to support effective advisory board outcomes. But how exactly does a Chair do this?

Let’s take a look

  • The most functional aspect of the Chair’s role is to confer with the business owner or representatives, and through an objective review, gain a clear understanding of the advisory board’s goals and purpose.
  • Once the Chair has a good understanding of the business’ priorities, they can help formulate the structure of the advisory board and identify the required skills to meet its goals. An experienced Chair is well versed in the value of fostering a strong, best practice foundation for the advisory board structure to ensure it is aligned with the organisational priorities and needs.
  • Working with the business owner, the Chair establishes the life cycle and scope of advice that the board will provide. Targets are set to measure its success with the Chair tracking progress throughout the advisory board’s lifecycle, assessing whether it is delivering on its purpose – and if not, considering if it requires reshaping or restructuring.
  • The Chair facilitates effective meetings between advisors and business owner/s by ensuring there are clear, accountable outcomes included in the meeting agenda. All attendees should have clarity around their role and a clear set of action items, with a mutual understanding of who is accountable for what prior to the next meeting.
  • The Chair must encourage and facilitate contributions from all members of the board. A quality advisory board Chair takes this to a deeper level by encouraging active involvement from the meeting participants to maximise the value of the time and resources dedicated to the meeting.

Where to from here?

An advisory board’s success in delivering on its goals is greatly dependent on the ability of the Chair to establish and facilitate a well-structured board underpinned by best practice principles. If you are considering establishing an advisory board or want to connect with independent Chairs and advisors, get in touch with our complimentary Advisor Concierge service.

Connect with the Advisor Concierge


Supporting organisations at a board level is a serious undertaking and may not be suitable for everyone. Aside from skills and experience, it requires the motivation to add value and positively impact the organisations you serve. Believe you have the skillset required to Chair an advisory board? Explore our Certified Chair™ Executive Program and professional membership.

Find out more information about the Certified Chair™ Program


Learn more about best practice advisory boards

What are Advisory Boards Roles & Responsibilities?