There are numerous reasons for engaging in a CEO advisory group. Sadly, as a long-time CEO myself, I personally experienced the pitfalls of the "lonely at the top syndrome" yet never had the opportunity to participate in a CEO group. Truth be told if I could do it all over again I would definitely make participation a top priority. As a CEO or a senior executive here are just a few of the ways that you can benefit personally and professionally from a peer advisory group.
Invaluable Expertise and Knowledge…From Those Who Have Been There
As a CEO or senior executive, you undoubtedly manage and deal with lots of people on a daily basis. However, while surrounded by tons of qualified experienced people there are few on the same level who shares the same degree of responsibility to converse within an independent objective manner. Members of CEO peer advisory groups have the experience, knowledge, and expertise that is relevant to the issues you'd like to discuss giving you the opportunity to have conversations with a group of agenda-free, independent, non-competitive business people. It's the chance to bounce ideas challenges and opportunities off professionals just like you. Get valuable input on any new strategies you might be considering, challenging decisions, or market trends you want an experienced second opinion on. The value is that many of the CEOs and participating members have first-hand experience with similar business practices and can provide candid advice and invaluable help navigating tough terrain.
Collective Wisdom For Exponential Results
Everyone has heard the expression "Two heads are better than one." How about "Sixteen heads are better than two?" And geometrically better as well because during the discussion it's common for everyone to build off one another's thoughts and ideas. The bigger value comes from the collective wisdom of a variety of different people examining, exploring, and punching holes in ideas thoughts, and solutions. The result is a sort of geometric explosion of the quality of your personal thoughts.
Uncovering the "A-ha" Moments
One of the most beneficial experiences that come from participation in a peer group interchange is that you find out things that not only you didn't know, but things that you didn't know you didn't know. Certainly, none of us know what we don't know until it occurs. Those "a-ha" moments when someone brings something up you've never considered that is directly related to your unique situation create a learning experience that's hard to emulate.
Peer Group Accountability
Within peer groups, bonding and camaraderie are established. The trusting environment, vulnerability, and openness allow the members of the group to gain an invaluable understanding of you, your organization, and your competitive environment. Because the group's goals are centered on getting better and helping one another succeed there is a built-in culture of accountability. Not only does the group chairman hold you accountable, so does each member of your peer group. As we go through life we all learn things that we've never thought about, but having an incubator of really smart people, with immense practical ability and experience, along with huge success is a wonderful resource.