Starting a mastermind offers you a group setting to share your personal ambitions. Meeting other motivated and like-minded individuals is not always easy. It takes time and effort. Once you form your group, it is important to focus on the goals or outcomes you expect from partnering together.
Let’s talk about the different types of mastermind groups, what your purpose should be, how to bring a group of people together, and the role of the group.
Starting a mastermind group: what types of mastermind groups are there?
Masterminds have a rich history among entrepreneurs and people looking for personal coaching. A mastermind can be beneficial in many different settings such as business, education, sports, religion, location, lifestyle, and other communities.
Groups can exist online or in-person. The size of groups may range from two people to a dozen or more. Some are more formal and structured, while others can be informal among friends. You will even see some experts, like a life coach, offer paid masterminds. Typically, a mastermind is a group of friends or colleagues who meet regularly to share stories about their personal projects.
The design of your mastermind can be as creative as its members. In many organizational settings inclusion and diversity have important values to team success. Inclusion means you invite members into your group setting. It is a way of not leaving out people who could add value. Diversity helps you balance the experience, backgrounds, interests, and point of view of the group. There is a common saying, “you don’t know what you don’t know.” A diverse group offers perspective when starting a mastermind.
Starting a mastermind: A mastermind is only as good as its purpose
Suppose you had a mastermind of recent graduate lawyers in their twenties looking to become partners by the age of 30. They all share a common interest, but each one is fresh out of school. The purpose is clear: to become a partner in their firm by the age of 30. In their circle, it can help them to relate obstacles and challenges to one another. Adding a member who has made partner by 30 may help them gain some expert advice. With a singular purpose such as this one, there will have to be milestones along the way to make sure each member is making progress.
An objective way of creating purpose is to attract people who are interested in your group, setting goals, and holding each other accountable.
The common interest is very important for a successful mastermind. It helps build trust you are collaborating with someone who cares. Inviting a member to join your group who is skeptical can hurt the value and bond of the circle.
Avoid people who are interested in your mastermind for the wrong reasons. A healthy mastermind has no malice or negativity. Be open to ideas and willing to share.
Sharing common interest makes it easier to like the people you interact with. You will find it easier and more friendly to collaborate.
Setting SMART goals
When starting a mastermind, goals should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.
In a mastermind, each individual may have unique goals or the team participates in shared goals. A number of research studies show you are more likely to succeed with your goals if you keep them private. In each of these studies, there wasn’t a system for regular feedback such as a mentorship program. A mastermind offers you a model for peer mentorship, regular feedback, and accountability.
Success should only be measured by evaluating past performance. Your mastermind and the goals you hope to achieve will fail if you do not use the social setting in a mastermind to talk about performance. Make sure you are continuing to make progress, eliciting feedback, and prioritizing your next steps. Your mastermind may have resources and feedback you would not have alone.
Starting a mastermind: Bringing people together for a mastermind
The concept of a mastermind is new to some people. Explaining what a mastermind group is can help people understand what’s involved.
A mastermind can be formed by a group of friends, colleagues, acquaintances, or networking with other like-minded people. In some cases, you may already be interacting with people, without the structure of a mastermind. Networking with people you think may benefit from the mastermind is a great way of building new relationships. If you think someone should join your mastermind, use your best judgment whether you should ask them to join. Keep in mind that not everyone may want to participate, or there are conflicts of interest you need to consider. Be respectful and do not take it personally if people don’t want to join. You also may want to consult with your mastermind before you add new members because this can change the dynamics of your group.
Whether you are seeking to form a mastermind, or join one, be clear on the purpose. It is nice to give a preview of how you envision the mastermind working.
Setting up the mastermind has some logistics. Create a schedule to meet as frequently as you think you need to meet. Decide roles such as a facilitator, and set a structure for how you want to run your group. Establish any ground rules you think will help with the group. Arrange a way to communicate together online, by phone, or in-person. Kick things off by using the first meeting to talk through everything above, as well as your personal goals. Continue to meet regularly and share progress.
What is the role of your mastermind group?
A good mastermind offers benefit to each individual. Be sure you are leveraging the “wisdom of the crowd” when starting a mastermind.
Your mastermind is a great way to set goals and leverage peers to hold yourself accountable. They offer you a perspective that you would not have alone. Be open to feedback (and criticism) and use it constructively towards your goals. Because your group may have faced similar challenges, consider how they can share resources or insights with you.
Guidelines for how you will facilitate and structure your mastermind will keep everyone focused so you are effectively using your time, effort and even money. The design and setup of your mastermind can be a creative way for you all to express yourselves. Have fun, think differently, challenge each other, and succeed.