Rural Business Owner Roundtable Groups

Virtual Peer Groups for Small Businesses in Small Towns
Apply to JoinContact Kelly to Learn More

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Mailing Address

1428 Lake Road
Altoona WI 54720

Who qualifies?

Business Owners Wearing All The Hats

Is your business located in a rural area?  Have you been in business for at least two years and seen ongoing growth? Do you have at least $500k in annual revenue but not more than $10M? Join your fellow business owners to share experiences, discuss issues and solve problems through a Rural Business Owner Roundtable Group!


Problem Solving – Experience Sharing – Decision Making

Roundtable groups for business owners have been shown to accelerate business growth and serve as a source of support for small business owners.  Check out these case studies from PeerSpectives peer group members to learn more.

Wisconsin landscape

Virtual Business Owner Roundtable Groups

No competitors, No customers, No selling – Just Problem Solving!

Members of a business owner roundtable group come from all industries and business types, which can help give a unique perspective to issues each owner is addressing.  Some of the top issues that get discussed in this group include hiring, firing, succession planning, financial planning, difficult customers, marketing, and more.  Longer range planning is also covered at these monthly meetings, with some strategy and goal-setting sessions, along with discussion of marketing planning and time management.  The rural roundtable group also focuses on issues that are unique to running a business in a small town – and connecting with business owners from small towns OUTSIDE of your town for some additional perspective!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Rural Business Owner Roundtable Group?

Rural Business Owner Roundtable Groups are groups of 6-10 rural-based business owners who meet once a month in a confidential environment to discuss business issues using a structured format with a professional facilitator, with an emphasis on sharing experiences, encouraging accountability and developing connections with the group members.

Who qualifies to be in a group?

Rural Business Owner Roundtable Groups work best if the group members are in a similar stage of business growth, as the issues encountered tend to be similar, regardless of industry.  Business owners should be located in a rual area or small town, have been in business for at least two years, and bring in at least $500k in annual revenue (up to about $10M).  No competitors or referral sources can be in the same group, so if there is already someone in the group that you work with or compete against, you cannot join that group.

How does it work?

Group members meet in person for the first meeting, and then meet virtually once a month for 90 minutes, following the PeerSpectives Roundtable System(TM) that emphasizes confidentiality and honest communication among members. Members are from non-competing, non-referring businesses and focus on experience sharing to aid in executive problem solving. The licensed facilitator keeps the group on schedule, making sure all discussions are relevant and no one person dominates the discussion.

What are the benefits?

This roundtable process has proven to be successful in helping business owners find a way to discuss sensitive issues about work with peers rather than employees or family members. Participants gain insight through experience sharing that helps address problems and identify opportunities. The group members hold each other accountable when making difficult decisions, but ease the process by emphasizing sharing similar experiences and not giving advice. Group members develop trusted relationships to share both business and personal issues. 

How is this different from a networking group? Or a Mastermind? Or an Executive Coach?

This is NOT a networking group.  The purpose of these groups is to create a confidential environment where business owners feel free to share financial troubles, personnel problems, concerns about growing too fast or too slow, and other business challenges. A group should consist of businesses that do NOT want to do business together, as members would feel uncomfortable sharing their challenges in front of potential customers or vendors. Doing business together is strongly discouraged, and competitors are not allowed.

A Rural Business Owner Roundtable Group (BORG) is certainly more similar to a Mastermind Group than to a Networking Group, as both Rural BORGs and Mastermind groups focus on regular peer-to-peer conversations about work. Some Mastermind groups are led by a facilitator and some are not. A Rural Roundtable Group is always facilitator-led and follows the proven PeerSpectives Roundtable System(TM) agenda to ensure confidentiality, experience sharing and balanced discussion. Groups tend to be a bit larger than Mastermind groups, averaging 8-10 rather than 3-5 members.

Typically, an executive coach works one-on-one with executives to help advance their professional careers. The relationship is more uneven, rather than peer-focused. BORG members benefit greatly from the confidential, experience-sharing process among peers. Members are welcome to seek out executive coaching for themselves, separate from the Future Together group if they desire.

How do the discussions stay confidential?

Confidentiality of the Rural Business Owner Roundtable Group discussions is the most important aspect of the entire process. Members must feel completely comfortable sharing very sensitive issues about their financial situation, personnel issues, personal health and other components that factor into running the business. The facilitator and members all sign a confidentiality agreement. Visitors and potential members are not permitted to sit in for the discussion. When in person, the conference room should ideally not be visible to others. When meeting virtually, find a spot where you can’t be seen or heard. We find that the issues being discussed in the group get more and more sensitive and emotionally charged as the group gets more and more comfortable with each other and the process.

Will any competitors be in the group with me?

No. All members have the right to veto any potential new members, and no groups will be put together without the express agreement of each member to be in the group with the others. We do not allow competitors, customers or vendors to be in the same group. Ideally, every member will be from a different industry, as the diversity of the group enhances the conversation.

Can I sit in on a group before I decide to join?

Yes and no. If you are joining an existing group, those group members will decide if they want to accept a particular new group member. Then that potential new group member can meet with the group BEFORE they begin the formal peer group roundtable meeting format. But they cannot listen in to the actual meeting, as it is only for members. Those who join a new virtual Rural Roundtable Group will have that same veto power as new members are added.

If you are interested in joining a Rural Business Owner Roundtable Group, click on the link to the left, or contact Kelly directly at 715-830-8244 or  These group is limited to 12 members, and so there may not be an opening available right now, depending on the current size of the group and whether a new group is being formed.  If there are openings, you can request to come visit a portion of the meeting to meet the current members and determine if the group would be a good fit for you, and vice versa.  Reach out to learn more.