How to Prepare for a Corporate Board Seat Interview

To allow a board of directors of a company to be able to approve a new member it is essential to ensure that the person is a good fit for the company. The interview is a vital component of the hiring process.

Board members are interested in hearing from candidates about their relevant skills and experience that allow them to be appropriate for the job with a focus on the value they provide. Interviewers will often ask questions to determine the candidate’s comprehension of the complex and difficult questions that board members may face.

They’ll also want an understanding of how a candidate handles conflicts and how can effectively communicate with other board members in a respectful manner. Boards often ask candidates how they would deal with specific issues like shareholder engagement and potential conflicts of interests. They also want to know if the candidate is ethical and accountable.

Many companies provide candidates with a set of materials to be read prior to the interview. It’s not enough to do just a quick glance through these to gain a complete understanding of the business and its C-suite and board members, industry dynamics, and the major risks. The best way to prepare is by listening to CEO conversations with analysts and investors, says Deb DeHaas who is an experienced public company board member and chief executive officer of the Corporate Leadership Center. She suggests that candidates be able to articulate why they are interested in the company, their product or its issues, and how they can assist in solving these problems.

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