What Everyone Should Know About Mastermind Groups
Is a Mastermind group right for you?
The idea of a Mastermind group has been around for over 75 years, when Napoleon Hill wrote about the concept in his great book, Think and Grow Rich. This book was released in 1937, at end of the Great Depression. (If you haven’t read it, I strongly recommend it!)
The Mastermind concept is timeless. While technology, business trends and advice around leadership and teamwork are always evolving, the simple notion of collaboration, face-to-face, with other professionals is not. It’s a concept that can help you find inspiration, share advice, develop life-long meaningful friendships, and realize your full potential.
I belong to two Mastermind groups (one near my home in North Carolina, and one near my search firm headquarters in the Detroit area) and I am far better off as a leader and life coach because of these groups. I have found encouragement and valuable insight from my Mastermind groups, even when sometimes the advice they shared was tough to hear.
Being in a Mastermind takes commitment, openness and a willingness to share ideas, and also accept criticism. What good is advice without hearing the good and the bad?
Here are 3 great way a Mastermind group can help you:
Help you grow. You will be in a group with others who also want to grow, so you’ll be challenged in big ways. A Mastermind group is not a social club — it’s serious business. You may find new solutions for problems that you were not able to find on your own. You may also be pushed outside of your comfort zone, and experience transformational growth.
Expand your network. When you become part of a group larger than your own set of friends and colleagues, you get to interact with more people who can stretch your perspectives.
Get good advice. You’ll receive objective input from other people who aren’t in the day-to-day operations of your business or your life. “You can’t see the whole picture from inside the frame,” is a great quote from Les Brown. Getting an outside perspective can help you see things with fresh eyes.
I’ve been in several Mastermind groups over the years, and have started three myself. Here are some ideas I can share if you’re ready to create or join an existing Mastermind group:
Get Commitment Up-Front. Each member should commit to showing up, to maintaining complete confidentiality, to the pursuit of personal and professional growth, and to “action” based on the input and advice of the group.
Meet at least one per month, or even every couple of weeks if you can make that work. Both of my groups meet monthly, and we rotate the location to different members’ home, office, or other location.
Rotate who leads each meeting. There is no designated “leader” of a Mastermind group, but instead is truly a group of peers. Each member should take their turn in hosting the meeting and in acting as a facilitator.
Keep a regular schedule, and commit to showing up. A Mastermind meeting is serious work — not a book or social club.
Arrange for guest speakers. Bringing in leaders from the outside who can teach your group a new skill, or encourage your growth, is ideal. Our group reserves 45–60 minutes in each meeting for speakers who bring relevant insight. If you can’t arrange for a speaker, then reviewing a great book, watching a TED talk or other instructional video, or discussing a hot topic is a good alternative.
Have a Hot Seat! For each Mastermind meeting, pre-identify one member who will share his/her business or life challenge that they would like the group to help with. This is the core value of the Mastermind concept — helping each other grow. I call this the “hot seat,” and every member should have their time to sit there.
I like a Mastermind Meeting to last around 2 ½ hours. Our schedule is typically:
First hour: Guest speaker or review of special topic
Second hour: Person on the Hot Seat shared his/her concern, and the group provides advice
Last half-hour: Go around the room sharing highs and lows for the previous month
I’m committed to continued personal and professional growth, as well as growing in my network and collaboration with others. Masterminds are a powerful way to facilitate both of these goals.
If you’re not already in a Mastermind group, I suggest that you look into creating one or joining one in your local area. Your life will certainly be blessed as a result. If you’re not sure on how to get started on this, let me know and I’m happy to help.
Cheers to a life of balance, growth and happiness!!
If you’ve enjoyed this post, you should consider Downloading my latest E-Book, Top Ten Tips to Design and Live Your Exceptional Life.
Coach Brett Blair
Originally published at blairleadershipgroup.com on April 19, 2016.