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Advisory boards: an untapped resource for businesses

Executive summary

BDC undertook the first-ever Canadian study on the use of advisory boards by small and medium‑sized enterprises (SMEs). The study describes how advisory boards work in these businesses and quantitatively demonstrates that SMEs that use them have superior growth and better financial results.


  • 6% of Canadian SMEs have access to an advisory board that helps them manage their business.
  • 86% of respondents who have benefited from the advice of their advisory board believe it has had a significant impact on their company.
  • Canadian SMEs with advisory boards perform better financially than those without advisory boards.