A good Mastermind group can change your life. There is no better way to navigate the difficult challenges in life, and in entrepreneurship, than the collective experience of others. We are not that unique. We may come from different political, religious, ethnic, age, and sexual orientations, but the fundamental problems most humans face are shared among a group of peers.
Mastermind groups were introduced by Napolean Hill in his book, Think and Grow Rich (a must read).
Hill defines the principle as, “Coordination of knowledge and effort, in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose."
In other words, it means surrounding yourself with smart and engaged people that share your view of life, because the power of several people is exponentially more powerful than you alone.
Even before I knew about “Masterminds” I enjoyed talking to fellow entrepreneurs in intimate settings to understand their pain points. I was in awe when I first learned that people in completely different industries, selling widely unique products and services, share the EXACT same struggles I face. How to market their product, staffing issues, unhappy clients, accounting headaches, turnover. The list goes on. It’s the same cat with a different coat of fur. As a budding entrepreneur, I really was mind blown. 🤯
Mastermind groups let us share our collective experience and wisdom to help each other solve problems together, or keep us accountable to achieve the goals we set for ourselves.
“None of us is as smart as all of us.” — Ken Blanchard
Why Start or Join A Mastermind Group
Collaboration is king.
You will learn the things you don’t know, but more importantly, about the things you “didn’t know you didn’t know”. I got a referral for a financial consultant that charges $350/hr. I met with him for 1 hour and he changed my business forever by setting up time tracking for our company.
“The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.” — Phil Jackson
Grow your network.
By joining a mastermind group, you instantaneously grow your network exponentially. The network of everyone in your group becomes your network. As you share your problems or listen to others, people will make connections for you when you need them most.
Most mastermind groups will find ways to help your companies expand through cross promotions. Brand collaborations are a great way to introduce your products to new audiences.
How To Start A Mastermind Group
If you want to start your own Mastermind group, here is a comprehensive guide by Liz Seda and Scott Dinsmore. Since this is very thorough, I’ve outlined the key points below:
Step 1: Choose Your Mastermind Group Type
- Topic-based — Formed around a specific topic like fitness, animal rights, homeschooling, etc.
- Mission-based — A group with a shared singular mission. (Example: To plant 1,000,000 trees in North America)
- Business — To help members of the group grow their business, regardless of niche.
- Goals & Accountability — Perfect for the new year, this group helps members keep themselves accountable for their goals, business related or not.
Step 2: Define Your Purpose
Once you’ve identified your group type, define the group’s purpose. This should be fairly straightforward as the group type paves the way for this (ie — Plant 1,000,000 trees in North America), but take it a step further and write a mission, vision, values.
This purpose of this group is to keep each other accountable with one common ethos — Be The Best You Can Be. We will meet weekly online to check in with each other, review our annual goals and the progress we are making toward achieving those goals on a weekly basis. Through our combined mind power and network we help each other to live for our purpose and reach our highest goals.
Step 3: Creating Your Mastermind Ground Rules
The most important thing in running a successful mastermind group is to have clear expectations for everyone in the group from the very beginning. When people are clear on their commitment, they are more inclined to step up to the challenge and get excited about being a part of something. This shouldn’t be considered “work” for anyone, this is an opportunity to become a better version of yourself.
- We are committed to meet every week until the end of 2019, at which point we can decide if we want to continue.
- Leave your ego at the door.
- Be willing to accept constructive feedback.
- Hold each other accountable.
- We embrace competition, but with a foundation of support.
Step 4: Putting Your Team Together
Mastermind groups range from 2–50 people, but I’ve found the best groups are made up of teams of 4–6 people. With a smaller group, you have more time to focus on individual issues and you can meet and discuss things more frequently, or casually offline on a text thread.
- Similar experience level
- Similar ambition levels and desires for achievement
- Similar values, beliefs, and ethics
Step 5: Establishing Your Meetings
The agenda for your Mastermind meetings should be the same every week, and your group should have a scheduled time to meet. If one member of the group can’t make it, the meeting goes on.
- Welcome & state mission with Inspirational Quote
- A short update on previous week (all members)
- Hot seat — critical questions & feedback from team members
- Everyone states goals for the coming week