A successful business support programme which allows Lancashire business owners and managers to learn from each other, improve their business performance and gain insight from private sector experts is set to return to the county.
Peer Networks, which is being funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is led locally by Boost; Lancashireâs Business Growth Hub. It starts in September, nearly 12 months after 300 business leaders took part in the first Peer Networks programme in October 2020.
Peer Networks will bring together 35 groups of 11 business leaders to solve common challenges and create powerful long-term networks.
The groups will be facilitated by key organisations from Lancashireâs business support community including the Northern Automotive Alliance, Northern Power Women and Marketing Lancashire.
In addition to helping the participating businesses learn from each other, the facilitators will provide specific one-to-one mentoring or coaching to help each participant develop and grow their business.
Andrew Leeming, programme manager, Boost said: âIn Lancashire, the Peer Networks pilot helped more than 320 business leaders to learn from each other to solve shared challenges. That came at a critical time in Lancashireâs economy as businesses began their recovery journey.
âWeâre pleased that we will be able to work with Lancashireâs quality business support community once again to bring together 35 new groups of Lancashire business owners and managers â” helping them learn from each other, develop and grow.
âThe knowledge they will gain, and the long-lasting relationships that Peer Networks will create will bring continued growth in the county over the coming years.â
The fully-funded scheme is available to Lancashire businesses more than a year old employing more than five people, with a turnover of more than Â£100,000 and an appetite to improve.
A total of 18 delivery partners have been chosen to facilitate the 35 cohorts.
Dan Hurtley is managing director of Dan Hurtley Ltd, a Lancaster-based handcrafted furniture manufacturer and installer. He was introduced to Peer Networks last year by Boost mentor Paul Aisthorpe, who facilitated Danâs cohort.
Dan said: âWithout Paul and the Peer Networks programme I would still be a one-man band. We have now got four members of staff, have just recruited an apprentice and we have just signed a lease on new premises.
âJoining Peer Networks gave me confidence. Itâs good to bounce your ideas off other business owners and managers. I soon realised every business comes across similar obstacles.â
The programme includes interactive action learning, flexible topic selection and one to one coaching. Cohorts will cover areas of business including business resilience, finance, HR, sales and marketing.
Peer Networks is funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in response to a commitment made in the 2019 Business Productivity Review.
A full list of the organisations delivering Peer Networks in Lancashire is below.
Asesoria GroupBiz SmartsBusiness Information GroupCommunity & Business Partners CICElementasEssentialiseThe Growing Club CICGrowth LancashireIBD Business Advice GroupMarketing LancashireNorth West Aerospace AllianceNorth & Western Lancashire Chamber of CommerceNorthern Automotive AllianceNorthern Power WomenScale-AbilityShout NetworkVedas Recruitment and TrainingWinning Pitch
For more information about Peer Networks, please contact Boostâs Relationship Management team on 0800 488 0057 or visit: https://www.boostbusinesslancashire.co.uk/business-support/peer-networks/