Leading Edge Group, the Cork-based industry training company, has partnered with Australian firm The CEO Institute to offer peer-to-peer networking services to business leaders in the Irish and Canadian markets.
Established in 1992, The CEO Institute has 1,000 members in 12 countries. Leading Edge partners with academic and professional bodies to provide certified training programmes using Lean, Six Sigma and supply chain management principles.
The Cork company has a presence in Canada, where it has had an office in Toronto since 2009, and entered the Australian market in 2011.
Founder Joe Aherne also owns the management consultancy ReganStein. “When you reach the top of any organisation, your options to collaborate and network naturally narrow,” said Aherne.
“You face scenarios that you most likely will not have been exposed to previously and being able to adapt to these new challenges head-on is paramount for the success of their business.
“CEOs also need to continually evolve in their thinking and be innovative in their decision-making.”
The CEO Institute organises monthly meetings and networking events for members. “The CEO Institute allows CEOs to connect and talk with peers on their issues and challenges,” said Aherne.
“The idea is that plugging into a trusted network means leaders can learn from common challenges and successes.
“Leaders need a safe place to think and someone to talk to that can offer them advice and counsel that is independent. Learning to accept feedback from trusted peers can ultimately make for a more resilient leader.”
Aherne pointed to the Harvard Business Review’s inaugural CEO Snapshot Survey, released in 2012, which found that half of the CEOs surveyed experienced feelings of loneliness in their role and 61 per cent believed it hindered their performance.
“CEOs typically attend management and leadership programmes run by organisations such as Enterprise Ireland or executive programmes run by elite academic institutions in Europe and the US,” said Aherne.
“However, being away from their business for any length of time is practically impossible. Harvard Business discovered from their CEO survey that 71 per cent benefited from seeking peer support resulting in improved company performance.”