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Create a MasterMind Group

Variety is spicy. photo by Zsuzsanna Kilian

Finding Your People

The minimum requirement is that you enjoy each other.

Beyond that, you’ll want to all be in about the same place in your business. That way everyone can help each other without one person feeling like they are doing all the helping, or another feeling like they are way behind everyone else. There is a big difference between just barely starting and having years under your belt.

One benefit of a MasterMind group is that everyone brings different strengths to the table. I’ve found though that what can be even more important is the strengths everyone can bring: openmindedness, playfulness, and a willingness to be vulnerable.

How many people make a good group?
I think 5 is ideal. It’s provides variety but everyone still gets enough time to talk. And if one person can’t make it, there is still a group feeling. 6 is doable, but that would be my max.

Deciding on a Structure

I’ve had the most success just dividing up the time and having everyone get a turn. Often there will be one person with more going on and another with less, so it evens out. It’s important that everyone agrees to the structure and the degree to which it is loose or rigid. Bring a timer to the meetings – a cell phone will usually work.

Some groups have a set of questions that people answer when it is their turn. These may include:

  1. How are you doing personally?
  2. How is your business doing?
  3. Give your “elevator pitch” (good if you are working on honing that).
  4. What is a “first” that you had in your business last month?
  5. What do you want help with from the group today?

Sometimes you may want to do exercises with your group, like any of our [worksheets] or other self-discovery tools. I’ve done collage and writing exercises with my group and it’s both fun to do in a group, and you learn more about each other.

How often should we meet?
It really depends on what works for the schedules and lifestyles of everyone involved and what your goals are for the group. Meeting more often will foster more intimacy and camaraderie.

Where should we meet?
Anywhere with some privacy and quiet. Often meetings are either in a coffee shop, in one of the members’ homes, or over the phone. I like meeting in a home as it feels more homey. If you plan to meet in a restaurant, you may want to make a rule that people who want to order should arrive early so that is taken care of before the meeting starts.

Creating a Culture

Some groups are all business. Some are very woo-woo. Some are all about numbers and progress. Some are more about socializing. I enjoy a happy mix of celebration, sharing breakthroughs, and brainstorming strategies for solving problems (with a lot of laughter and a few tears thrown in). Use the [worksheet] to get clear on what kind of culture you’d enjoy and keep it in mind as you look for your playmates.

Setting the Intention

Stated or not, your group has a shared goal that you are organizing around. Lest it unconsciously become “kvetching about our businesses”, I recommend stating it out loud. It could be summed up as a motto or mission statement, or be a general discussion about what you all are about.

Connecting Between Meetings

My favorite tool for keeping touch in-between meetings is Facebook’s Groups function. Since we were all on Facebook anyway, it was an easy tool to start using. We celebrate successes, ask for help, and share resources–just like we do in meeting. It helps keep the continuity going between meetings.

One Comment

  1. Heather Schwartz, Psy.D.

    What a great idea! It’s common for therapists have consultation groups, but a group that meets to discuss business (and connect) is a wonderful idea for other business owners! I also like the idea of having a group of people who are from different small businesses to learn and promote each other. What a great site this is!



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