What is Mastermind Group
A little more simply put… two minds are better than one. Better yet, when you bring several minds together, and they are working on a common goal, a synergy happens within the group that could not happen with one person by himself. In other words, "The whole is greater than the sum of the parts." That is the power of the mastermind.
A good mastermind group will allow you the participants to come together and discuss and idea or ideas about their business. This may include a specific business idea such as marketing for an upcoming holiday, or it can be something more broad, such as how to balance work and life as a business person.
The members of the group offer suggestions, insight and support to each other that they would not normally receive. This is not a "support group" and it's a "networking group". It goes far beyond that. It is about having a solid group of like-minded people working on a common goals. There is a GOAL at the end. Not just a "talk session".
So let's move this forward to a typical business mastermind group of today. Here are some of the components that make up a mastermind group.
In a nutshell, a business mastermind group is a group of the like minded business individuals with a common goal who meet together on a regular basis to brainstorm, support and assist one another. For business members, mastermind groups can provide support, motivation, inspiration, problem-solving, encouragement and ideas.
The goals of the mastermind group as a whole should be as defined as possible. "To have a successful business" is not a strongly defined goal. However, "Increasing the profitability of each member of the group by a minimum of 20% in 2012" is a more precise goal, then helping each member to breaking it down to smaller but manageable chunks, so that the goals can be achieved not just visualized.
The mastermind group has the ability to see things from a grander perspective. Even better, as different minds start talking and expounding on ideas, other will chime in and new ideas will form. You may find yourself coming up with an idea that never occurred to you before as you are inspired from the synergy in the group. Or you may be that inspiration to another member in the group.
Number of Attendees
In a typical business mastermind group, there are a set number of attendees that may join the group. The number is usually kept small enough to ensure that everyone can participate. "Small" means that a typical group will usually consist of somewhere between 4 and 12 people. You need to have enough people so that there is interaction and ideas are flowing. However, if there are TOO many people in the group, not everyone gets a chance to get voice their opinions or bring up their challenges.
Each group really differs in finding their "sweet spot" with regard to the number of participants that fit that particular group. It is easier to start on a smaller scale and see it works and then add participants if the group is functioning well. This is much easier than having too many participants in the beginning and finding that people are frustrated because they feel they don't have a chance to participate.
Also, keep in mind that vacations and other issues do come up. If you have a group that is too small, you may find yourself with only two or three attendees for some of your sessions, it's not as productive as having more members there to fully bounce ideas and suggestions around.
Mastermind Business Coach / Facilitator
Any good business mastermind group will have a business mastermind coach. We often get the question “What is a business mastermind coach and why does our mastermind group need one?”
We first want to address the idea of a business coach in general. You may think, “I’m in business. I’m a business person. I know what it means to run a business. I certainly don’t need a coach.” Think of this for a moment. There are professional golfers that certainly know their game. They make a LOT of money hitting a ball into a hole. Yet they still have a coach that helps them with their swing…making it even better.
Why? A golf coach can see things they can’t see. They have a different perspective. The same thing is true with a business coach. They help you to see things from a different perspective – they encourage you to try things from a different point of view. Another thing that a coach does for an athlete is helps to keep them accountable. No smart athlete would dare keep their coach waiting. They show up when they are supposed to and when they don’t perform up to snuff, they have their coach to report to A business coach can provide the same accountability for a business owner. Together, the coach and business owner can set goals. There is an accountability system put in to place and the business owner has to report it. If they don’t do what they say they were going to do, they better have a good reason why. Being a solo entrepreneur often means being able to justify putting things off.
Even in large corporate environments you will find coaches and mentors (believe me it is so lonely at the top, I have seen it so many times) It gets a little too easy sometimes! Having a coach whom you are accountable to can really help.
Mastermind Business Coach
Now a mastermind business coach differs a bit from a regular business coach. They are not going to be coaching you through aspects of your business. They are going to have more of a silent kind of role…more of a moderator or facilitator role in the mastermind group.
However, they do still provide that excellent bird’s eye view and different perspective. They can ask an open-ended question that gets the group off and talking on a subject. They can help clarify a question or issue that someone seems to have trouble putting into words. They can also help to ensure that everyone is having an opportunity to be heard.
A mastermind business coach is vital in having a mastermind group run smoothly. Having a mastermind business coach is often the difference between having a group that is efficient and productive and one that is frustrating and ends up dissolving after a few sessions.
The agenda may be up to the group. It usually consists of a small period of introduction, and then time to go through each person's "issues". Or you may choose to have a hot seat topic.
One thing is vitally important, and that is EVERYONE is the group must participate. Your peers will be giving you feedback, and they will expect your feedback in return. It is only through full participation that the group will truly be able to fully attain new heights. As an individual business person, it is easy to get caught up in seeing things one way, You are close to your project, you visualized it from its inception, and you simply can't see it from another direction. By being able to see it from a fresh set of eyes, someone who is totally from another sector to yours – you will learn how to adopt new way to of exploding your business and not just what everyone in your industry is doing.
The business mastermind group is also about accountability. It is easy as a business (especially as a solo entrepreneur) to put off setting goals, or to justify not hitting goals. Soon you can find yourself losing any form of accountability. In a business mastermind group, you will be setting up, focusing on and tracking your accountability systems. You'll find yourself more inspired than ever to do so when you have a support system and the group behind you. Feeling like you're "not in it alone" can be tremendous weight off your shoulders. Knowing that you have someone to report in to and bounce ideas off can also be a huge motivation!