PledgeMe crowdsources new board member

PledgeMe crowdsources new board member
After crowdsourcing applications for a board member, New Zealand’s crowdfunding site PledgeMe has announced Jessica Venning-Bryan will be joining its board.

Venning-Bryan, who we interviewed about Flick Electric (where she is general manager of brand) here, has spent almost 15 years advising organisations on how to engage people with their products and services.

Venning-Bryan’s appointment is the result of a three-month long process where PledgeMe ‘crowdsourced’ the replacement for existing board member Anake Goodall. Rather than searching in the corners of the usual smoke-filled, oak-panelled, backrooms, PledgeMe simply asked their community whether any of them either wanted to apply, or knew someone who would be suitable.

Everything was as transparent as possible. To be up for consideration, all you had to do was fill out a Weirdly questionnaire. Throughout the journey, PledgeMe have updated their community on the search, including gender statistics of applicants.


Image: Jessica Venning-Bryan

“We are excited for Jessica to join the board of Team PledgeMe, and bring her experience which ranges from beer to wind farms, elections to employment,” says Anna Guenther, PledgeMe’s CEO.

“This varied experience will help us leverage off our existing brand and help us engage with our ever expanding crowd in better ways. Jessica’s limitless energy, deep experience in marketing and branding, and her values aligned with our approach to business, and life. We think having her voice around the board table will make us a stronger brand and better people.”

Venning-Bryan has spent 15 years advising organisations like Lion, the Electoral Commission, Seafood NZ, Saatchi & Saatchi Global, and the Sustainable Business Council on how to engage customers with projects and brands.

She is also the founder and trustee of Cultivate Mentoring Lab, a not-for-profit that partners early-to-mid-career women with experienced mentors to help them grow their confidence and progress equally at work.

Venning-Bryan says she is excited about joining Team PledgeMe because of the people-focussed way they do business with exciting organisations doing exciting things.

“I've known Anna for some time, and have always admired her relationship-centric approach to business,” she says. “I completely believe in democratising access to capital, so being part of a platform that supports all New Zealanders to realise their aspirations is a great privilege and responsibility. And I love the thrill of building businesses and brands. There's nothing quite like growing a young idea into a flourishing, sustainable, impactful business.”

“I deeply believe in PledgeMe’s approach to helping New Zealanders fund the things they care about, and I want to see the business become the most successful crowdfunders down here.”