How to Start a Mastermind and Why You Need One.
When I was younger, I remember playing this game where my sisters were the bad guys. And they would meet in their evil lair for their mastermind meeting on world domination. Never did I imagine that I would actually be living that out as an adult! Okay, okay. I’m no villain and I’m certainly not planning world domination but I’ll tell you a secret. I do have a mastermind group. And we are making big things happen all the time. Because that’s what a mastermind is all about.
Which leads me to this big truth.
Friend, you need a mastermind!
There. I said it. I told you before that I didn’t want to keep telling you want you need but seriously. This is true. You do need a mastermind.
Now before you give me the side eye and think I’m trying to lure you into some evil plot, let me explain. Contrary to my childhood beliefs, a mastermind is simply a group of people that come together to help each other grow, both personally and professionally.
I know. You already know this. But I love talking about it so just grant me the simple pleasure of spelling it out! And even though you may already know what they are, have you considered joining one?
Ah, gotcha! If you’re not in a mastermind, now is the time to make that happen!
There are a lot of masterminds out there. Some come with courses, some are paid after an application. I don’t favor those. Instead, I opt to recommend creating your own mastermind group. And doing so is as easy as eating softened ice cream on a summer day.
Step One : Recognize that you don’t want to do it alone.
This sounds silly but it’s the truth. Being a solopreneur can make you crazy! Absolutely bonkers because you end up so close to your business that it becomes difficult to actually make the progress that you want.
Not to mention that we as people are programmed to socialize a bit. When you’re ready to admit that you need a close group of people to learn from and help support, you are ready to jump into the world of masterminds.
Pro Tip : You’re ready. Just do it.
Step Two : Identify what you want from a mastermind group.
This is an excellent time to become clear on your goals for the group as a whole. And to get you started, here are some questions to ask.
- How much time will you be able to contribute to the group?
- How many members will you be inviting?
- When will the group meet up?
- How will members stay in communication in between meetings?
- Will the meetings be structured or more free flowing?
I’m aware that can be overwhelming to think about but it’s important to go into this with clarity so that you can truly make the most of it. But I’m not just going to scoot you away without any semblance of guidance.
Truth be told, your time invested is up to you! The more you put it, the more you’ll get in return but this shouldn’t be where all of your time is spent. Keeping your member count low encourages a deeper bond between the members, which is vital to growth. And meeting up is a no brainer. I meet with my mastermind via Google Hangouts once a month and I’ve coached fabulous women that meet once a week with their mastermind members.
This is definitely where you can and should be true to yourself and your needs through and through!
Step Three : Determine who you’d like to be in a mastermind with!
This is the fun part! When you actually get to ask people to join a mastermind! Yep, you actually have to put yourself out there. But here’s the deal. You can just do it all willy nilly. You need to actually know who you’re inviting.
Start taking a closer look at the people you interact with. Maybe they’re people in Facebook groups or maybe they’re fellow course mates. Take a look at their interactions. Is there someone that is always encouraging or wonderful to talk to? Someone that you feel naturally comfortable with online? Those are the people that you’re going to want to really hone in on.
Before reaching out, there are a few other factors that come into play.
- Are they on a similar business level as you? You want to make sure this is an even-ish group of people that are at the same level as you. This ensures that everyone is pulling their weight and not relying on that one person with a huge audience for support.
- Is their target market similar? This sounds strange but working with someone that has the same market as you will make it easier for you to support one another. You don’t have to be working the same niche or anything, just the same market.
Step Four : Send out those invites!
Ready for the big scary step? It’s time to actually send those invites. The people that you honed in on and are excited to work with? Send them an email. Or a message. Or call them. However you are able to get ahold of them, do so. And let them know you’re interested in having them join a mastermind group.
Explain exactly what you’re looking for, all the way down to meetings and structure so that they can tell if it’s a good fit for them. And once you’ve said your piece, if they don’t say yes immediately, let them know that you’d love for them to consider it and that you’ll follow up.
Giving them the promise of a follow up allows them to take the time they need to decide and if it’s not for them, they can email you back without it being a weird break up phone call, right?
And if it’s not for them, you move along! No harm, no foul!
Step Five : Implement!
This is the last step, I promise. Once you have your members, actually implement the structure you outlined before you invited people!
Schedule those meetings, have those conversations and make it happen!
See? Super easy!
But why do we do all of this? Why is this better than just joining a Facebook group? I could give you a million reasons but I’ll narrow down to my top three.
Working towards goals for yourself can be a challenge when you have no boss. Having a group of people that are eager to see you succeed will help you maintain accountability. They’ll be the people that want to know why you didn’t accomplish something and will help you brainstorm solutions.
Ever ask a friends opinion on something and have them respond with that blank look and a “It’s great!” And you know it’s not great. Ahem. Yeah. You won’t get that with a good mastermind group.
Your group will give you honest feedback, which in turn, will help you grow.
Sure, there are a million communities online but a mastermind is a much more intimate experience. You’ll laugh and cry with these people. You’ll share triumphs and glorious failures.
The connection you make will far outweigh anything you have in a Facebook group.
So there it is. My secret weapon. Masterminds.