Peer-to-peer support and advisory group expanding in Scotland

A peer-to-peer support and advisory organisation for business leaders is extending its reach in Scotland.

Steve Cook is to lead The Alternative Board’s latest launch in Scotland. Picture: Ian Georgeson.

The Alternative Board (TAB) is launching to the west of Edinburgh, after the network debuted north of the Border in 2017 where it has now eight boards – four in the North East, three in the Glasgow area, and one in Edinburgh.

TAB – which originated nearly 30 years ago in the US – says each board provides a “trusted space for entrepreneurs to share experiences and expertise at monthly online meetings and to help them pursue their individual and business development objectives”.

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Former WoodMac man to lead peer-to-peer support and advisory group in Edinburgh

The new outpost will be led by Steve Cook, who built up a £4 million turnover business in the sales and marketing sector. The Livingston-based executive has experience of growing businesses internationally, and people-development. His TAB remit covers South Queensferry, Falkirk, Linlithgow and Livingston and the surrounding areas.

He said TAB “effectively provides members with a number of non-executives and advisors that have a broad range of experiences” – adding that it’s crucial for businesspeople to be able to tap into multiple resources in the current challenging circumstances.

“I’m passionate about TAB and how it helps businesses through peer-to-peer support,” Mr Cook also said, explaining that the aim with TAB is to give participants ideas, strategies or actions to improve their business.

The businessman was formerly head of retail operations for West Europe at HMD Global, a mobile phone manufacturer. His role included leadership, strategy, people-development and maximising efficiency across 14 countries. He also ran his own field marketing and events business, Twenty5Eight Solution, with 50-plus staff at one point, and he has also worked for Microsoft, HTC, Bank of Scotland and Siemens.

In addition to supporting board meetings, TAB facilitators support board members with one-to-one engagement. There are TAB boards across 20 countries, with 80 in the UK in total. Ed Reid and Mags Fuller took over TAB in the UK in 2017, after it was launched in 2009 and grown by its previous owners Paul Dickinson and Jo Clarkson.

Edinburgh West is holding a free online taster session to allow company owners and decision-makers in larger organisations the opportunity to find out what TAB can do for them.

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