The peer network which brings together present and former winners of the Red Rose Awards is to return for a third year with backing from Community & Business Partners.
Access to the network is part of the comprehensive package for winners of the prestigious awards and is designed to help businesses tackle problems and achieve growth.
Winners of each category are invited to six meetings across the year, which feature themed masterclasses and presentations from experts as well as opportunities for members to discuss issues with other award winners.
Laurance Hancock, chief executive officer of The Boathouse Youth which won the Not For Profit Award in 2023, said: “As the only person around the table from the charity sector, it was really interesting to realise that it doesn’t really matter what the industry is that you’re working in - the issues are all very similar.
“Hearing other people talk about their challenges and sharing with you different ideas in a completely non-confrontational arena was really empowering for me and I’d recommend it wholeheartedly to anyone who is aspirational about business or leadership.”
Jess Barrow, a heritage and planning consultant with HPA, shared how she was initially cautious about joining a peer network. She said: “I didn’t quite know what to expect and initially I had wondered how I might contribute. But the penny dropped in the first session. Asking questions about specific situations and topics helped me make the sessions personally relevant, and I found that I was able to contribute to providing solutions to the problems my peers were facing.
“Whilst everyone in the room represented a wide array of businesses spread across Lancashire, it was reassuring to hear that in many cases we are all facing very similar challenges.”
Jess added: “Every session provided was invaluable and the support from Community & Business Partners added a layer of personalisation. The relationships built with other winners, CBP, Lancashire Business View staff and the session facilitators have been fantastic and we would not have been given the same opportunity to flourish through networking type events.”
Community & Business Partners, the Blackburn-based community interest company whose goal is to support companies through business mentoring, coaching, and training, reinvests their surplus back into helping the local community through various food and environmental initiatives. They will once again play a crucial role in bringing the winners together.
Jaydee Davis, managing director at CBP, said: “We’re delighted to be continuing our partnership with the Red Rose Awards. The feedback says it all: the businesses have enjoyed meeting other winners, gaining new skills and insights and more importantly having a safe space to discuss business challenges.
“We have really strengthened delivery on the last peer group, introducing a mix of masterclasses, delivered by previous RRA winners and still continuing with our valuable peer group discussions after.”
Lancashire Business View, organisers of the Red Rose Awards, has also strengthened its partnership with Community & Business Partners by committing to its membership scheme.
Jaydee said: “We are so excited that LBV has joined the CBP Member family. This is a community of businesses that enjoy learning, accessing support for their teams (online or face to face workshops, for example) , networking and building relationships.
“But the beauty of this membership is that these businesses all help us give back to our community, feeding those in need and saving our planet through environmental initiatives.”
Stephen Bolton, managing director of Lancashire Business View, said: “We are thrilled with the reception to our Red Rose Awards peer networking group and are delighted to bring it back for another year.
“From the outset of creating the awards nearly 15 years ago, we always wanted this to be more than just a fun night and a trophy for the winners. Our whole ethos is about bringing businesses together, getting them talking, buying from each other and supporting each other.
“The peer network is part of that commitment to supporting all of our winners, and it’s great to hear such positive feedback.”
Entries are now open for the Red Rose Awards 2024. Businesses have until December 8 to submit their nominations. Details can be found online at www.redroseawards.co.uk
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