March 22


5 Ways Peer Advisory Groups are Better Than Business Coaching

By Andrew Martin

March 22, 2024

peer advisory vs business coaching

If you’re an entrepreneur looking for advice and mentorship, there are lots of different avenues you can explore. Many entrepreneurs hire a professional business coach to steer them in the right direction. The right business coach could certainly help you grow as a business owner, but I firmly believe that peer advisory groups offer a more comprehensive and more effective means of guiding business owners through the ups and downs of entrepreneurship.

Peer advisory groups are where entrepreneurs get together to share advice, brainstorm solutions to pressing issues, give support to one another, and help each other grow professionally and personally.

In this article, I’m going to share some of the reasons I believe peer advisory groups have more to offer than traditional business coaching.

1. Collective Wisdom vs. Sole Advisor

There’s a quote I saw recently that I loved: “The wisdom of a group usually exceeds the certainty of a lone expert.”

This perfectly sums up one of the main reasons I prefer the peer advisory group approach over one-on-one business coaching.

When you’re part of a good peer advisory group, you’re not just getting insights from one person, no matter how experienced or knowledgeable they might be. Instead, you’re tapping into the collective wisdom of a diverse group of entrepreneurs, each bringing their own unique experiences, successes, and failures to the table.

This diversity of thought and perspective can lead to more well-rounded advice and innovative solutions to the challenges you’re facing.

2. Real-World Problem Solving

In my experience, a lot of business coaching focuses on providing general advice that’s based on business theory. It’s almost delivered in a curriculum-like manner with little customization to your actual needs as a business owner.

The great thing about peer advisory groups is that the focus is actually on working through real-world problems that you’re currently facing in your business.

Each session is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to present their most pressing issues to the table and get specific, actionable advice from peers who may have faced similar challenges. This hands-on approach to problem-solving ensures that the solutions you walk away with are practical and proven in the real business world.

By applying these collective experiences directly to your unique situation, you get a tailored strategy that’s far more likely to succeed because it’s grounded in actual business practice, not just theory.

3. Accountability & Motivation

Multiple studies have found that you have an 85% or more chance of reaching any goal you set with peer accountability. 

When you hire a business coach, you’re only accountable to one person, and while that can be effective, it doesn’t compare to the accountability you get from a group of your peers.

In a peer advisory group, you’re accountable to the entire group, and as you build a bond with your fellow peer board members, you’re not going to want to let them down. This creates a powerful motivation to follow through on commitments, as you’re not only reporting back to a coach but sharing your progress with fellow entrepreneurs who are invested in your success as much as their own.

Knowing that you’ll be discussing your progress at the next meeting encourages you to take action and make significant strides in your business.

Plus, the encouragement and support from the group provide an extra boost of motivation that can help you overcome obstacles and stay on track, even when things get tough.

4. Sense of Community

I’ve talked a lot on here about how lonely entrepreneurship can be. In fact, 73% of entrepreneurs have said they’ve felt lonely running their business. That’s why having a community of peers who understand the struggles you’re facing can be so powerful.

With business coaching, you’re usually only getting one-on-one interaction, which, while valuable, doesn’t provide the same sense of belonging and shared experience that a peer advisory group does.

In a peer advisory group, you’re part of a community of entrepreneurs who are all navigating similar challenges. This community becomes a source of not just professional support, but emotional support as well.

This sense of community fosters a safe environment where you can share your fears, challenges, and successes openly. It’s a place where vulnerability is seen as a strength, allowing for deeper connections and more meaningful advice.

I’ve seen firsthand how the relationships you build in these groups often extend beyond the meetings, providing a network of support and friendship that can be a lifeline during tough times.

5. Diverse Industry Insights

One of the major benefits of joining a peer advisory group is you have the opportunity to gain insights from a variety of industries, not just your own. You’d be surprised at how much you can learn from businesses that aren’t in your own space.

This diversity is something you rarely get with a business coach, who might specialize in your sector but lacks the broad spectrum of experiences across different markets.

In a peer advisory group, members come from different backgrounds, industries, and stages of business growth.

This mix creates a broader range of knowledge and perspectives that can be incredibly enlightening.

For example, a strategy that worked for a tech startup could be adapted to benefit a retail business, or a manufacturing efficiency could be applied to a service-based company.

I love how this cross-pollination of ideas encourages out-of-the-box thinking and innovation. It allows you to apply best practices from one industry to another, often leading to breakthroughs that wouldn’t have been possible in an echo chamber of similar businesses.

Understanding how different sectors tackle common problems such as customer acquisition, scaling, or sustainability can provide you with a competitive edge. It broadens your strategic thinking and helps you anticipate trends and opportunities that could impact your business.

Other Resources

Ready to Join a Peer Advisory Board?

Are you looking for concrete, actionable strategies that a peer advisory board can provide to business owners?

Six Figure Dinners hosts peer advisory groups that unite entrepreneurs and founders to tackle essential business issues, share collective wisdom, and gain insights from shared journeys.

Our gatherings are catalysts for innovation, collaboration, and strategic growth, equipping our members with transformative insights and strategies—our renowned “Six Figure Takeaways”—to drive their businesses to new heights.

Click here to learn more and join us as a guest at an upcoming event.

Andrew Martin

Andrew is Founder and CEO of Six Figure Dinners. He's also a co-owner of JARA Ventures, a venture capital firm that invests in and operates businesses across various industries, including financial services, recruiting, digital media, and real estate. Prior to this, he owned and managed 11 Menchie's Frozen Yogurt locations and a Menchie's Food Truck, which he sold in 2014. Andrew's other investments mainly target small to mid-sized consumer industries.

He earned his MBA from UCLA Anderson School of Management, specializing in Brand Management. Before pursuing his MBA, Andrew led a sales territory at The TREX Company in Boise, ID. Throughout his career, he has volunteered in various capacities, such as offering pro bono mediation services and assisting underprivileged families in improving their living situations.

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