I'm a relentless advocate for outside board members in family businesses, in large part to divorce the value of objective business discussions from subjective family dynamics. I've seen a family member derail an important conversation because his baby brother … some 30 years ago … wrecked his bicycle.
Jeff Bussgang, an entrepreneur and now VC partner, provides in a recent Business Week article, a good reminder of the value of having a “Truth Teller” on your Board of Directors.
If you're running a family business, do you have any outside board members? If so, are you glad you do? If not, why not?