Is a Mastermind or Peer Advisory Group for You?

business leader business owner ceo coaching entrepreneur leadership survival May 12, 2022

Have you ever thought about joining a business owners' mastermind or peer group?  As a young Air Force Commander, we would all meet every Friday to have real discussions about challenges within our organization.  The thoughtful and sometimes brutal feedback helped my organization excel.  We did not repeat the same mistakes as our other commanders because we shared those experiences.  We also became much closer and our peers were always there for each other. The benefits of Peer Advisory Groups are absolutely worth the time spent.

#1 Improves decision making and enhances results

Business success takes many skills. In large organizations, talents aggregate based on a large number of senior executives and the breadth of the leadership team. In contrast, smaller organizations, which often have a single senior leader, don't have that diverse, experienced talent pool to draw upon. As a result, their business decision making may not be as strong as it could be if they had access to a diverse set of talents.

While it's true that a single entrepreneur may not personally possess all of the knowledge needed to optimally run and grow a business, peer-to-peer advisory groups allow business owners to tap into the experience of their peers and make better decisions.

Advisory group members provide each other with practical advice to real-world problems. The solutions are battle-tested by other entrepreneurs in the group who have "been there, done that".

By giving business owners access to a trustworthy, proven network of peer business owners, the end result is better business decisions and enhanced business results.

#2 Clarifies direction

In addition to assisting with individual business problems, peer advisory group members help each other to define overall business strategies. Through interaction with the group, peer group members get clarity on their business direction.

This is something that is often neglected by business owners who are working in their business, rather than working on their business. Membership in a peer-to-peer advisory group ensures that a member will take the time to think about their business direction. They then articulate the business plan to the group, which in turn serves as a sounding board on the strategy.

#3 Creates accountability

Indeed, simply having to report current status to other members has the effect of creating accountability in a business owner that might otherwise not exist.

For example, if a business owner tells his peer group that he will revamp his sales team commission plan prior to the next meeting, you can bet that he is not going to show up to the next meeting without having done his homework. The expectation is that business owners in a group will do what they say they will do. In this way, the group members hold each other accountable for forward progress on their business challenges.

#4 Reduces isolation and increases confidence

Inner Circle and other similar peer advisory groups interrupt the isolation inherent in owning your own business and allow you time to connect with trusted peers.

It's lonely at the top, but it doesn't have to be. Business owners need not feel isolated and alone while they run their companies. A good business advisory peer group creates an outlet for camaraderie, a sounding board for new ideas, and a means to obtain sage business counsel.

#5 Improves work/life balance

It goes without saying that improving your business is often the fastest path to improving your life. Without the headaches of a given business problem, you will likely have more time to spend with family and to attend to your own personal needs. By improving business results, peer-to-peer advisory groups improve entrepreneurial lives.

Beyond the positive impact of making more money and more profits with fewer headaches, members are there to support each other through personal challenges. In almost every case, members in a peer advisory group become friends. In fact, at the end of the day, the benefit of making new friends with a few kindred entrepreneurial souls may be one of the biggest payoffs of joining a peer advisory group for business owners.

Will a peer-to-peer advisory group benefit me personally?

Peer-to-peer advisory groups benefit their members in many ways. Through a good group, you can expect to identify game-changing actions to scale your business. In a good group, you can also expect to determine specific measures for success to monitor your performance long-term and hold yourself accountable for achieving those strategic commitments. With the right people in your group, you might increase your business prospects and implement greater operational efficiencies too.

It’s not just about tapping into the collective mindshare of other talented leaders though. Taking part in a peer-to-peer advisory group is an excellent way to provide value to others as well and pay it forward to the rest of your group. Professional networking clearly is an essential part of running any successful business. Through peer-to-peer advisory groups, you will be able to contribute to the continued success of other leaders and potentially build strong business partnerships and relationships with other CEO’s and business leaders too.

10 Reasons To Join A CEO Peer Group by Henry Devries

  1. Safe Haven

Confidentiality allows each member to be totally open about issues. It provides a safe environment where a CEO can work through topics that he or she is unable to discuss with others directly associated with their business.

  1. Solid Reasoning

When a CEO peer group is working on a challenge for one of their members, having diverse perspectives can pay huge dividends for the quality of the discussion and the depth of the exploration undertaken.

  1. Real Feedback

When a peer member asks for unfiltered feedback, he or she gets just that. Truth can be hard to swallow sometimes, but it is good for business leaders to have their ideas challenged sometimes.

  1. Guidance

The CEO peer group allows the executive to create their own personal guidance system. This steering committee of seasoned pros can be helpful when charting a course through difficult waters.

  1. Motivation

The element of accountability can be underestimated by members when they are new to a CEO peer group. Everyone, from time to time, can benefit from having a respected peer hold their feet to the fire.

  1. Magnification

The power of a CEO peer group includes the ability to focus the collective awareness of many executives on one specific issue. The result is an intensity of thought capable of delivering much greater mental energy.

  1. Illumination

An ever-present challenge for CEOs is to continue to discover information previously not known to them. When a member receives new information from the group, it is as if a light goes on for them and they can see clearer.

  1. Molecular

The power a CEO peer group creates in its members a new structure for gathering fresh insights The groups not only help solve problems, but they also help members grow as a leader and as a person.

  1. Explosive

Most businesses, even successful ones, can develop organizational inertia that is hard to overcome. A CEO peer group can give members “escape velocity” to free them from earth-bound issues (at least for half a day each month).

  1. Insurance

The majority of new businesses fail. By sharing in the wisdom of others, the CEO can increase the chance of the firm to survive and thrive. By taking this one simple act, CEOs begin to turn the odds in their favor.

“Most executives who join a CEO peer group stay in the program,” says Franzi, who estimates the renewal rate to be 80%. “The reasons they remain are as varied as the individual members. But the power of the process is undeniable.”

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