Online Networking

On behalf of Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership, UMi has launched its first cohort of Peer Networks, a national peer-to-peer networking programme for SME leaders that want to do more and go further in their businesses.

Delivered locally at no cost to businesses within Enterprise M3, the programme connects and brings together diverse groups of individuals in a series of high impact sessions to discuss, gain valuable feedback, reflect and then take action to work through common business challenges together. Through the sessions, leaders will develop a trusted support network, helping to build and strengthen their businesses, enabling them to do more and go further, whatever that means for them.   

A series of high impact virtual group sessions will be led by an expert facilitator, taking business leaders through discussions on a range of topics that are flexible to suit the group. These can include COVID-19 recovery, EU transition, finding more customers, making more money or improving ability to scale. In addition to group sessions, each business will also have access to one-to-one coaching to help tailor and accelerate their actions.  

The programme is open to aspirational SME businesses that have been trading for more than one year with at least £100,000 turnover and at least five employees.   

Part of a £20m initiative from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), Peer Networks are delivered in England by local Growth Hubs. UMi has been appointed to deliver two cohorts for Enterprise M3 launching in November.   

Nicki Clark, Chief Executive of UMi, said: “At UMi we know that businesses are more than bricks and mortar or numbers on a spreadsheet, they are living breathing things powered by people. Being a business leader can be a lonely place and there’s never been a more important time for leaders to draw on the support available from other people, and in particular their peers, as they face significant challenges and opportunities in their businesses. Sometimes, it’s the outside perspective that helps bring challenge, innovation and clarity. The importance of having a sounding board, the offer of advice, someone to hold you accountable and to cheerlead through small wins when you’re leading a business can make all the difference. 

“UMi’s powerful network in the EM3 area, having delivered the EM3 Growth Hub for the last five years, gave us a great advantage when we went through the competitive procurement process to deliver this work on behalf of the Enterprise M3 LEP. As an employee-owned business, our team is extremely proud of our local community and we are looking forward to helping the EM3 business community to harness the power of that great network to help them take their businesses further.” 

Jeannie Satchell, Interim Head of Careers and Enterprise at Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “I am delighted that UMi are one of four delivery partners for the Enterprise M3 LEP’s Peer Network Programme.

“The beauty of action learning in a Peer-to-Peer environment, is that it is ‘real world’ learning; the sharing of information in a secure, confidential environment breaks down barriers and enables the cross-fertilisation of ideas and experience which delivers genuine solutions to individual challenges. Peer to Peer learning unlocks the power of knowledge.

“This is an ideal time for businesses to come together to discuss the challenges that we currently face.”

For more information and to register your interest please visit EM3 Peer Networks.   

Neina Sheldon
Article by Neina Sheldon
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