Three Often Overlooked Benefits of Joining a Peer Group of Entrepreneurs

peer groups entrepreneursWhen Brannon Poe first heard of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, it was from a friend in Texas. However, Brannon is based in Charleston, South Carolina, an area where there was no EO chapter—at least, not at that time. That changed in late 2018 when Brannon helped with launching a new EO chapter, in Charleston.

EO Charleston founding members

From left to right, Haig Berberian, Brannon Poe and John Laverne

“In 2017, my wife and I had recently become empty-nesters, and I was itching to get into something new. I had time on my hands. I considered joining all sorts of different groups and I kept coming back to the fact that many of my best friends are business owners,” Brannon explains. “I really wanted to connect with other local business people, so I decided to contact EO about getting a chapter launched here.”

As the founder of Poe Group Advisors, a company that has been facilitating the sale and transfer of accounting firms since 2003, Brannon is no stranger to connecting people and growing an organization.

In fact, he says, the process of helping to launch an EO chapter has been very rewarding. “I would say that I’ve been energized by this in a big way. It takes some work―no doubt, but starting things is what energizes most entrepreneurs.”

Brannon is also enjoying the perks of being part of a peer group such as EO. He recently shared the top three perks with Octane.

1. Skill Upgrades: One reason Brannon decided to look into EO is that he was exploring the idea of starting a CPA coaching business. “I realized I could use some skill upgrades when it came to public speaking and presenting. I wanted to find an organization that would help me grow into my goals.” The combination of networking and educational opportunities that a peer group provides ensures members have access to top-level development.

2. Local Connections: It’s common for entrepreneurs to develop tunnel vision, focused only on their organization’s growth, their industry competition, and their team’s development. It’s a natural tendency, particularly in the start-up years. Still, there’s much to learn in your own backyard.

Brannon explains, “Most of my clients are not local. We sell CPA practices all over the US and Canada. Getting plugged into the local business community has been an eye-opening and extremely positive experience.” With a peer group—even one with a global presence like EO, “The network effect is huge. I’m learning about so many local resources I never knew existed. I’m meeting some great people!”

3. Energy and Focus: For Brannon, the EO Charleston launch has been “like plugging into an electrical outlet. The time and energy invested are starting to come back in spades. If you are one of those people who struggle to find time and energy…then EO can help provide that.”

EO Charleston membersWhen like-minded business owners join forces, there’s often an amplifying effect in their focus. “The three original founders of EO Charleston, Haig Berberian, John Laverne and me (pictured above), decided to attend the EO Global Leadership Conference in Toronto, and we talked about what sort of chapter we wanted,” he explains.

“We’re all at a point in our lives where we want our businesses to work for us, and we want to enjoy time as well. We decided we want a chapter culture that strives for business growth and plenty of time to enjoy our families and life. There are different schools of thought on this, but I am a firm believer that top producers stay on top by rejuvenating often.”

With EO events known for life-changing learning and activities, Brannon is looking forward to plenty of growth in all areas of his life. One such event will be taking place in Charleston: EO Nerve 2019.

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