Top 12 Reasons to Join a Peer Group
I’ve been facilitating peer groups for almost a decade, and I’ve realized that no matter the subject matter of the group, or the economic environment when it takes place, members leave the meeting feeling more inspired, motivated, and confident than when they came into the meeting.
Peer group meetings are a dynamic way to engage your peers to solve real business challenges, discover innovative ideas, and refine strategies. The group’s camaraderie creates an atmosphere where members want to engage with the group and are motivated to work together to grow their business.
Top 12 Reasons to Join A Peer Group:
- Work On the Business, Not in It – It can be extremely difficult to see the big picture when you’re in the day-to-day of the business. Many leaders struggle to find time to get out of the daily tasks to think about confidently strategically advancing their business. Peer groups give you an opportunity to go off-site and see your business from the outsider’s perspective to understand new paths to fuel growth.
- Fast Tracked Learning – On the job learning is valuable, but it takes forever. Peer groups bring leaders together to share their experiences and improve each other’s strategies. This experience will accelerate your professional development, speed your learning, and develop your confidence in your ideas.
- Blind Spot avoidance – Why make mistakes that other leaders have already made? No matter what challenge you’re facing, someone in your peer group has been through it and can share their experiences, learnings, and “watch outs” to increase your chance of optimizing the opportunities ahead of you.
- Vision – As you listen to your peers, you’ll realize they are working on projects, initiatives, and challenges you didn’t know existed. These engaging discussions will help you see into the future through a new lens and be armed with their experiences and stories to help you make confident decisions to grow your business.
- Organic Networking – Peer groups allow you to create professional relationships with diverse individuals who can serve as a network of support for the length of your career. When you have a question or need a solution, someone in your peer group network may be able to help you.
- Safe Zone – As a leader, it can be difficult to admit you made a mistake, or don’t know the answer to a question, or hadn’t even thought of the question. A peer group is a confidential place to ask all the questions you can’t ask within your company. It’s okay to not know all of the answers all of the time.
- Motivation – Nothing generates action like a deadline. When you know your peer group meeting is coming up, you’ll be inclined to confront the issues from the prior meeting, try new solutions, and report your results back to your group.
- Emotional Support – Being a leader can be lonely. The expectations, challenges, and demands can seem impossible at times. A peer group is a place to discuss these challenges with like-minded peers to get support and refuel yourself.
- Personal Growth – Growth doesn’t happen by being comfortable and not taking risks. Frank conversations, probing questions, and detailed discussions with your group members and your facilitator push you to confidently think differently and grow personally.
- Accountability – Set goals with your group and be held accountable to get them done.
- Professional Facilitator – When discussing tough questions, many leaders rush to the solution. The facilitator ensures a topic is effectively discussed and that everyone in the group has a voice in the conversation.
- Leadership Awareness – Even the most self-aware leader struggles to see how their style impacts their team. Your peer group will give you an unbiased understanding of how your leadership style may be affecting employee productivity, engagement, and moral.