How to Secure a Board Seat: Universal Board Member Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all skillset for board members. There is infinite variety between boards in terms of their needs, goals, processes, and operating styles. No two boards are alike, which makes board member positions an excellent opportunity for executives to use their expertise to undertake intellectual business challenges that directly impact the direction and success of their chosen company. These roles are highly desirable and notoriously challenging to acquire. 5 Assets to Help You Secure a Board Seat The first step to actualizing your goal of gaining a seat at the table is to prepare your CEO/executive board member resume and job search marketing documents for a board position. Even though there is no magical formula that fits the needs of every board, here are some broad experiences, skills, and abilities that apply to most board environments:

  1. Strategy implementation and execution. In your CEO resume, highlight your experience identifying priorities, establishing goals and objectives, finding resources, allocating funds, and executing roadmaps.
  2. Anticipation and adaptation. Being able to anticipate strengths, weaknesses, and challenges will proactively allow a business to re-evaluate and adjust plans at the drop of a hat.
  3. Value-added contribution. Going into your search, know your unique value proposition. Your technical expertise or your past experience may be exactly what the board needs to meet its goals and overcome its challenges.
  4. Cybersecurity and digital proficiency. Most companies’ needs have changed dramatically since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and many boards have had to shift gears to prioritize secure remote work and confidentiality.
  5. Risk management and board governance. All boards need members who have experience in CEO selection and succession, feedback to managers on organizational strategy, compensation for senior executives, investor, stakeholder, and authority relations, and oversight of financial health, performance, and risk.

To find out how we can help you uncover and communicate the skills that make you an excellent board candidate and secure your board seat, book a complimentary and confidential call with us here.  

Mary Elizabeth Bradford is the Founder and Executive Director of and and a past executive recruiter. A thought leader in the career services industry for over 20 years, she holds 5 distinct advanced certifications for senior-level resume writing, online branding and executive-level job search coaching (CERM, CMRW, CARW, MCD, NCOPE). She has been seen and heard in major media including Forbes, Time, WSJ, Newsweek and NBC affiliate stations. She holds 2 CDI TORI awards and is a top tier judge for the elite CDI TORI awards for four consecutive years. Mary Elizabeth Bradford’s elite team of award-winning, certified, top executive resume writers, former top executive recruiters, and global HR executives help many of the world’s premier C-suite, board members and thought leaders secure the transitions and compensation packages they want. She works with clients all over the globe.

If you are a Director, VP, CxO, or Board Member interested in an executive resume package or working directly with Mary Elizabeth, click to schedule a complimentary 15-minute call.