Do you ever wonder if there is a “Secret Sauce” that will catapult your business success?

Well, last weekend was my 11 year anniversary of being a full-time entrepreneur, business owner and coach.

And as I thought about what has helped me most, I realized it was…

Having strong, meaningful business relationships.

Want to know the BEST ways to cultivate powerful business relationships?

Participate in Programs, Go to Live Events and Join Mastermind Groups.

Today’s post is all about Mastermind Groups. I think you’ll enjoy it!

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One of the big challenges faced by the solopreneur coach is the isolation that comes from working alone.

An excellent way to mitigate this issue is by participating in a Mastermind Group.

While mastermind groups have existed since the begin of civilization, the concept became much more common after Napolean Hill published “Think and Grow Rich” in 1937 and defined the mastermind as a “coordination of knowledge and effort, in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose.”

I like to define a mastermind group as two or more people who come together to support each other in achieving a desired goal or outcome.

BENEFITS of participating in a mastermind include:
– You have a group of people who are committed to helping you succeed.
– You receive support, encouragement and inspiration as you move forward towards your goals.
– You become more focused as your mastermind can help hold you accountable.
– You can test out your ideas and receive valuable feedback and other perspectives.
– You can tap into the resources, knowledge and connections that the other members bring to the group.
– You can develop powerful long-term business relationships and friendships.

2 Main Ways to Mastermind:

1. You can join a paid mastermind group with a dedicated leader/facilitator.

2. You can co-create a mastermind group with your peers as a way to mutually support each other.

There are rewards to both types of masterminds.

When you invest in a paid mastermind, you are more likely to take it seriously and typically, the bigger the financial investment, the more committed the members.

In addition, if you want to offer a higher-end paid mastermind in your business, you’ll be more successful if you’ve experienced a paid mastermind yourself.

In an unpaid mastermind group of peers, you are co-creating it with the other members, which means you have the ability to influence who is in the mastermind, how it is structured, etc.

Keys to Success when forming a mastermind group with peers:

1. Clear Focus – You need to be clear about the purpose of the mastermind and ideally, the members should be focused on similar goals and objectives.

2. Structure – As the mastermind is forming, you need to decide how often you will meet, how long the meetings will be and whether you will meet in person or by phone. After you determine the structure you need to stick with it, which includes starting and ending on time.

3. Time Frame – It’s important to set an initial time frame for the mastermind and have all members commit to participating for that period of time. This can be as short as one month or as long as a year. At the end of the initial time frame, evaluate if the mastermind will continue.

4. Meeting Logistics – Typically, each member receives equal “floor time” during every mastermind meeting. The person who has the floor shares what they want feedback on and then asks the other members for input.

5. Leadership – In order for the mastermind to run well, there needs to be some type of leadership. Someone needs to step-up and get things rolling. After the group is formed there can be one leader or rotating leaders.

Leadership responsibilities can include officially starting the meeting, facilitating the meeting, documenting action-items to help keep members accountable, sending a reminder before and a post-meeting summary afterwards.

6. Group Cohesion and Synergy – Your mastermind will be most effective when the members have something in common, such as having a similar target market or niche, length of time in business or connection through an organization or live event.

Over the years, I have participated in several different masterminds. One that was particularly successful was co-created by 6 of us after attending a San Francisco Coaches meeting. We met in person once per month for nearly 3 years. We are now in our 9th year and while we meet far less frequently, our bonds and connections are stronger than ever. Here’s a picture from our most recent gathering!

Recently, I joined a year-long paid mastermind with one of my mentors, Brendon Burchard and I’ve already noticed how making a big investment in myself and my business has helped me step up, think bigger and become more focused and productive. This is from the VIP Dinner for Empire Group members. It was fun!

If you’re not already, I strongly encourage you to join and participate in a mastermind group. The support, accountability, resources and connections are tremendous and can literally change your business and life!

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