The saying goes that it’s lonely at the top, and it definitely may seem so at first in the field of entrepreneurship. With so much focus on new ventures including launching a new business, setting new goals, and managing staff under a new framework, it’s no wonder that people at the helm are often driven to work long hours alone. At best, some negative feelings about being an entrepreneur may include self-doubt, lack of confidence, and occasional isolation from other people. But at worst, they may lead to burnout, a noticeable dip in work performance, and a loss of purpose.
As an entrepreneur you need to tap into large networks of people, so why not seek out support from like-minded leaders? It may be just what you need to sustain passion, excellence, and people-oriented focus in your entrepreneurial work!
In this feature, I’ll be detailing 6 good reasons why support groups matter to entrepreneurs. As a plus, I’ll also give tips on how to derive positive energy, constructive feedback, and a greater sense of mission from your chosen support group mechanism. Here is a treatise on how entrepreneurs can look out for fellow entrepreneurs!
What a Support Group Can Offer to Entrepreneurs
At times when the work feels lonely, your personal efforts feel insufficient, or your company’s hit a standstill, an entrepreneurs’ support group may help you in surprising ways. Among the top benefits of joining a support group are the following:
In a support group, you’ll find that entrepreneurs can empathise with each other. There’s something comforting about the fact that other business leaders are going through the same birthing pains as you. You will be able to see this for yourself in a support group. Once you’re there, you’ll see that the difficult task of entrepreneurship is more bearable and easier to master—because others have done it before you, and because others are taking the same steps as you.
Entrepreneurs can trade technical advice with their peers in the group. During your time in a support group, you might come across some practical tips on technologies to use, new methods of managing resources, and keeping up with business trends. What you can’t learn alone or just within the confines of your own business, you can definitely pick up from others in the group.
Entrepreneurs can extend valuable opportunities to each other through the group. Peers can advertise industry events, trade fairs, seminars, socials, and other opportunities to each other in the support group. If you chance upon any of these and attend them for yourself, you may be able to meet potential clients and business partners, and thus have a chance to get further ahead in your entrepreneurial career.
Entrepreneurs can offer each other fresh new perspective within their support network. You and your fellow entrepreneurs can enrich each other’s minds just by virtue of being in different life circumstances. Though you all may have the entrepreneurial life in common, you come with varied skill sets, disciplines, industries, and levels of experience. You would not know who could help another entrepreneur to break out of a rut with some creative ideas and make positive changes in a business.
Entrepreneurs within the support group can champion each other’s advocacies. One of the great things about being in a support network is finding fellow advocates for a good cause. When this happens, you will not only be able to fight for your own business interests, but for something that unites you with several other businesses like it. For example, you could meet other champions for the environment, social services, or education in your entrepreneurial support group, and in the future, you and your peers could organise a meaningful collaborative effort for the cause.
Entrepreneurs can help their fellow entrepreneurs in the network stay grounded. The biggest enemies to good entrepreneurial work are complacency, overconfidence, and isolation. The best allies to the work, on the other hand, are peers who can help each other stay grounded, purposeful, and connected to the people in their business. That’s how an entrepreneurial support group can bring you back to the original passion of your work—and thus, give you the drive to keep doing it.