Peer Networks – Bringing together structured learning, one-to-one counselling and peer network support

Cranfield continues to deliver the national Peer Network in the South East Midlands which is managed locally by SEMLEP’s Growth Hub. This high impact programme is designed specifically for business founders to seize opportunities to build a better business for a new tomorrow.

Brought to you from the Cranfield Bettany Centre, creators of the world-famous Business Growth Programme. Peer Network is your chance to follow in the footsteps of Moonpig, GoApe, Cobra Beer, Riviera Travel and other great businesses which have benefited from the Cranfield experience.

Six group learning opportunities with your fellow owner-managers, will be supplemented with three 1-2-1 individual coaching sessions, through which you will develop an action plan to prepare your business to grow and develop.  In addition, you will:

  • Gain focus and clarity on how to lead your business and teams.
  • Increase your confidence and gain new insights into yourself as a leader.
  • Sharpen your thinking before sharing your plans with your team and your customers.
  • Benefit from the huge expertise on business growth and business survival which Cranfield has gained from running the “Business Growth Programme (BGP)” longest-running owner-manager programme in the UK.

Further, running a business often feels isolated as it is difficult to share thoughts or issues with your business partners and especially your teams.  By joining The Peer Network programme we will connect you with other ambitious business founders in the South East Midlands to enable you, in a safe and confidential environment, share your concerns, fears and thoughts as well as put your learning into action.

The Peer Networks programme is available free of charge to any SME business in the South East Midlands that has operated for at least one year, has a turnover of at least £100,000 and 1-2 employees. Ideally, participants should also have the potential to scale up and the ability or potential to export overseas.

Spaces on this programme will be limited, so make sure you register your interest today.  Once we know the programme is right for you, we will be in touch to book you on the next available cohort.

For further information, email

Register your interest

At a glance

  • Dates
    • Please enquire for course dates

Programme details

The programme will help you to prepare for post-Covid times and will allow you to develop an action plan for the next 90 days.

You will participate in 6 group sessions that will introduce you to concepts on how to build a better business, allowing you to strengthen your position during these challenging times.

These group sessions will be facilitated by two of our trained business growth advisors with years of experience in working with SMEs and who understand the challenges and opportunities involved.

Session 1: Kick-off session (4.5h)

The session will allow for the group to connect and learn about the 10 steps of successful business growth.

Sessions 2 – 5: (2.5h each)

Each session will introduce you to relevant topics but will allow time for individuals to share what is going on in their business.

Marginal Gains

Marginal Gains
Nature of profit and its relation to cashflow.

Customers, Competitors and Me:

Customers, Competitors and Me
Why customers buy and how to make it
happen more profitably more often?

Building Customer Advocacy

Building Customer Advocacy
How to create more of it.

Building High Performance Teams

Building High Performance Teams
How to attract, retain and develop talent.


Session 6: (4.5h)

During this session, each participant will have the opportunity to present their 90-day action plan so that all participants and facilitators are able to provide valuable feedback to make the plan stronger and increase the chances of success.

In addition to the group sessions, each participant will receive 3.5h of 1:1 support with one of our business growth advisors.  These sessions will be scheduled after you have been accepted on a cohort and are typically an initial 90-minute assessment followed by two 60 minute development sessions throughout the remaining 6 weeks of the programme.

To book a place on the programme, please register your interest and a colleague from SEMLEP will be in touch to discuss eligibility and book you on the next available cohort.

Cohort 2 Dates

Session 1 - Tuesday 7 September – Kick-off (4.5hrs)
Session 2 - Tuesday 14 September – Marginal Gains (2.5hrs)
Session 3 - Tuesday 21 September – Building Customer Advocacy (2.5hrs)
Session 4 - Tuesday 28 September – Customers, Competitors and Me (2.5hrs)
Session 5 - Tuesday 5 October – People/Building Team (2.5hrs)
Session 6 - Tuesday 19 October – Action Plans (4.5hrs)

Cohort 3 Dates

Session 1 - Wednesday 8 September – Kick-off (4.5hrs)
Session 2 - Wednesday 15 September – Marginal Gains (2.5hrs)
Session 3 - Wednesday 22 September – Building Customer Advocacy (2.5hrs)
Session 4 - Wednesday 29 September – Customers, Competitors and Me (2.5hrs)
Session 5 - Wednesday 6 October – People/Building Team (2.5hrs)
Session 6 - Wednesday 20 October – Action Plans (4.5hrs)

Hear about the Cranfield experience direct from recent programme participants

Liz Male“The Bettany Centre has delivered huge value to our business since March 2020. As an owner managed business, it can feel lonely at times, and at first during the lockdown period it was difficult to get the perspective needed to make good strategic decisions. But the Cranfield experts were there for us and really helped me and all my team to see more clearly. I learned really practical skills – things I really wish someone had taught me 20 years ago before I started this business!”

Liz Male, director of LMC
A PR agency that specialises in construction and the built environment

Paul Musselle“Joining with other business decision makers added hugely to the peer to peer experience, which was greatly enhanced through having a knowledgeable Facilitator throughout. The combination of taught sessions was enriched with valuable and relevant peer-to-peer discussion that brought a great sense of “real world” to the learning. The topics too were not only thought-provoking but have remained relevant even as the business landscape has changed and continues to evolve. […]

There is no doubt in my mind that attendance on this programme has not only added significantly to my understanding of where to apply my personal and staff resources, but has also directly impacted on my ability to achieve real tangible growth for our business. I rate it quite simply, as the best business programme I have ever attended!”

Paul Musselle, CEO, Giggabox Limited

Peer Networks - Quote - Poppy Design Studio

Peer Networks - Quote - Tec Fire and Security