Peer Groups

Members Only

TAKING ACTION

Legislators respond best to the people they represent. Any legislator will tell you he or she would rather hear from a constituent than anyone else. Members of Congress depend on ABC members like you to tell them how proposed legislation or regulations will affect the construction industry, your district and especially your company and its employees.

Download the Illinois 2016 Legislative Rankings 

COMMUNICATING WITH YOUR REPRESENTATIVE

Communication by Telephone Calling is a great option when immediately trying to convey your opinion. Call a member of Congress’ office prior to an important vote to remind him or her how you would like them to vote. Congressional offices almost always count the number of calls received for and against certain pieces of legislation, and consider these calls an informal gauge of their constituents’ opinions. For example, with regard to the card check legislation, one Senate office told ABC that it had received 25 calls supporting the bill for every one call against the bill. ABC is strongly opposed to this legislation. See Appendix C for a Guide to Effective Calls.Guide to Effective Calls While it usually is best to put your views in writing to your legislators, when a vote is scheduled to take place immediately, calling your representative’s office is a very effective way to make your views known.Some points to keep in mind:Unless you are a personal friend of the legislator, it is not necessary to speak directly with him or her. You can leave a message about your concerns with the individual who answers the phone, or, better yet, with the legislator’s staff member who handles the particular issue in question. “I’d like to talk to the individual in your office who handles labor legislation.”Try not to argue. Just express your opinion. Say why you feel the way you do, and state what action you want your legislator to take. “I am against H.R.100 because it will cost my business more than $1,000 extra per employee each year– this is something I just cannot afford. Please let Representative Smith know that I urge him to vote ‘no’ on this bill.”Seek assurances that the message will be transmitted to your legislator, and request a response in writing. “Would you please pass this message directly to Representative Smith, and also send me a letter about his views on the bill?”It is very important when calling a legislator’s office to remember these cardinal rules:Be sure to give your full name and address; and, keep your call short and to the point.Your legislator’s number is available through the ABC Action app.Communicating by Fax and Email. When a bill is coming up for a vote, and there is not enough time for a letter or personal meeting, email and fax are the fastest ways to voice your opinion. The guidelines listed above for writing letters apply to these forms of communication as well. While personalized constituent correspondence is ideal, ABC also utilizes its Grassroots network and Voter VOICE software to distribute Action Alerts, making it easy to e-mail your legislators. A message is pre-written according to the legislation, and with only a few clicks a message is sent. When you receive an Action Alert, distribute it to your employees and associates- strength in numbers is the only way to be really effective in these instances.

2017 LEGISLATIVE ALERTS

HB 2439 - Responsible Bidder Requirements - 1st Notice

HB 2439 - Responsible Bidder Requirements - 2nd Notice

SB 1682 - Alarm System Licensing

Peer Groups


ABC’s peer groups offer like-minded business owners an environment conducive to sharing ideas and discussing business opportunities and challenges–all with the goal of improving their businesses. 

Peer groups consist of six to 10 ABC member companies within a trade or interest area and with similar annual revenues. Members in the same peer group do not operate in the same competitive market, which fosters trust and an open exchange of information. 

PEER GROUP BENEFITS

Forum for executives to discuss key business issues
  • Opportunity to learn from fellow contractors that have faced similar business challenges
  • Sounding board for new ideas 
  • Strong network of peers who embrace the merit shop philosophy 
  • Business consultants who can serve as a corporate advisory panel
  • Ability to have candid conversations about operational challenges and the need for cost savings, improved productivity and increased efficiencies

How a Peer Group Works

GROUND RULES FOR PARTICIPATION
  • Peer group members must be an executive of an active ABC member company. 
  • An initiation fee of $250 is required to connect a member to an existing group or establish a new group.
  • Annual participation fee is $250 per member, plus any additional costs for travel and meeting expenses. 
  • All members are required to sign a confidentiality agreement; information disclosed in the group is confidential.
  • Participation in face-to-face meetings and conference calls is required. 
  • Members who frequently miss meetings will be considered not active and will be removed from the group. 
  • Participants agree to time and financial commitment and may be asked to host a peer group meeting.
  • Member must be willing to be open and transparent with other peer group members for the collective good of the group. 
  • All the travel and meeting costs are the responsibility of peer group members. ABC National can provide meeting space at national meetings. 

HOW DOES A PEER GROUP OPERATE?

  • Peer groups meet periodically, including at least two face-to-face meetings per year. Frequently, meetings are held at members’ locations. ABC also can provide facilities for peer group meetings in conjunction with ABC National meetings. In some cases, groups meet by conference call, based on the needs and interests of the group.
  • An agenda is created for each meeting and the format can be determined by the group. Some groups have a rotating leader at each meeting and any member can suggest an agenda item for the meeting. Possible agenda topics include specific financial matters, employee/personnel matters, strategic planning and business operations. 
  • In some instances, members will be asked to provide information prior to the meeting. For example, if an agenda topic is P&L, key financial data may be gathered prior to the meeting. Groups that hire a facilitator will likely provide this information directly to that individual. Although groups may not utilize a facilitator at every meeting, it may be useful when discussing certain items.
  • Successful peer groups have a strong foundation of personal relationships, in addition to providing a forum for idea exchange. Social activities may be scheduled at the face-to-face meetings to help foster the relationships, such as sight-seeing, golf or a dinner out as a group.  

PEER GROUP LIAISON

The peer group liaison plays an important leadership role and serves as the primary contact between ABC National and the other members of the group. The liaison is responsible for the following: 
  • Primary contact in regular communication with ABC National staff 
  • Welcome new members to the group
  • Provide an updated contact list of all peer group members to ABC staff 
  • Alert the ABC staff liaison when there is a change in the group
  • Share best practices developed from the group, as appropriate
  • Access point for resources from ABC 
  • Enforce the ABC membership requirement for group participation

Resources Provided to Peer Groups

Peer groups are a valuable benefit of ABC membership. ABC National provides resources to each group to ensure it has what it needs to operate efficiently. Those resources include:
  • Annual peer group conference
  • List of vetted facilitators skilled in working with peer groups 
  • List of vetted speakers for peer group meetings
  • Assistance in comparing financial information/data analysis 
  • Provide assistance with filling peer group vacancies in timely manner
  • Dedicated conference call for peer groups
  • Dedicated GoTo Meeting account for peer groups
  •  LinkedIn group for peer group members only 
  • An online toolkit that contains meeting resources 
  • A membership directory of all peer group members, including contact information
  • Complimentary meeting space at ABC National meetings and the National office 
  • Coordination of hotel and sleeping rooms, as needed 
More information about these resources can be found in the Peer Group Member Only section. Contact peergroups@abc.org for access to the Member Only section. 

Annual Peer Group Conference

This annual one-day conference will be held in conjunction with ABC Institute for Leadership and Professional Development starting in 2014. The conference will consist of a general session, best practices sessions and networking session to generate new groups and match members to existing groups. 
More information coming soon!

Join a Peer Group

GROUND RULES FOR PARTICIPATION
  • Peer group members must be an executive of an active ABC member company. 
  • An initiation fee of $250 is required to connect a member to an existing group or establish a new group.
  • Annual participation fee is $250 per member, plus any additional costs for travel and meeting expenses. 
  • All members are required to sign a confidentiality agreement; information disclosed in the group is confidential.
  • Participation in face-to-face meetings and conference calls is required. Members who frequently miss meetings will be considered not active and will be removed from the group. 
  • Participants agree to time and financial commitment and may be asked to host a peer group meeting.
  • Member must be willing to be open and transparent with other peer group members for the collective good of the group. 
  • All the travel and meeting costs are the responsibility of peer group members. ABC National can provide meeting space at national meetings. 

COMPLETE A PROFILE FORM

Many factors are considered when being considered for a peer group including:
  • ABC membership required
  • Company type/trade
  • Geographic location (non-competing members)
  • Annual volume
Complete the online profile form. If you have questions, please contact peergroups@abc.org

Contact Us


If you need more information about Peer Groups, email peergroups@abc.org or call 709-812-2007.

Annual Peer Group Fee

Annual $250 per member participation fee has been implemented in 2014.  If you need to pay your annual fee, click here to submit your payment online.

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