Mastermind groups. Find a successful entrepreneur and you will likely find this person surrounded by a group of knowledgeable people in varying areas of life and business. In my opinion, to reach high levels of achievement, the necessity of a ‘mastermind’ group resonates true with me. Mastermind groups not only help percolate ideas and solutions, they also help with a level of accountability.
At my last mastermind meeting with five other entrepreneurs, I learned that Henry Ford didn’t know how to create much of what his company dreamed up in the early days. He simply surrounded himself with go-getter type people of high knowledge who could take his ideas and make them into reality. In effect, he assembled a mastermind group.
These groups benefit everyone in the group. The idea is to take the strengths of each person to forge a collective momentum in a positive direction. Too often we are told we need to work on our weaknesses, forsaking our strengths. When we focus on shoring up our weak points, too often our highest level of achievement is mediocrity. Why not take our strengths and run with them and find people whose strength is our weakness and partner with them?
United States society has fallen too far into a selfish mode. We do not want to partner with others because we fear they will take advantage of our weaknesses. While this undoubtedly has occurred, I would say most of the time the betrayal happened the root cause was that a relationship was not created and fostered. Mastermind groups call for honesty and integrity.
I’ve been running a writing mastermind group for 5 years – the Rogues Gallery Writers. I do not so much ‘run’ the group, as much as I came up with the idea, sold the idea to a number of outstanding writers, and we meet every single week to go over how we’re doing in our individual projects as well as working on group projects. We’ve now created four, FOUR, books together as a group. Individually, we all have seen success as writers to a certain level, and our horizon looks pretty good right now.
The synergy created in a mastermind group can elevate members to accomplish tasks they may never have dreamed about on their own, nor attempted without, at the minimum, simple moral support. In this day of hectic, digitized media and changing formats, specialized expertise coming together for a common goal only makes perfect sense.
The beauty of creating such a group today with all the digital tools at our disposal is we do not have to meet in person. Yes, physically meeting together is optimum, but with Skype and my favorite, Oovoo, we can at least meet face to face and hear each others’ voices. The Rogues have used this while one of our members went to Michigan for three months. We did not miss a beat. Sure, once she came back, we were elated to meet in person again, but our meetings online still produced a ton of results both tangible – like completed projects, and intangible – like helping each other through some emotionally grinding times.
Critical to a mastermind group’s success is the dedication to help each other out as much as possible with ideas and brainstorming and support. Each member of the group walks into a meeting knowing they will receive honest feedback on whatever issue is brought forward. For issues of hurdles to overcome, each member knows the group will percolate ideas that hopefully will set them on the path to solution.
Please consider finding a group of four to six people you know who might meet once a week for an hour to brainstorm and lend a hand to a fellow entrepreneur. I believe you will find the mastermind group not only beneficial, as I have, but also a necessity.
As an author, I know the following books would not have come into being without the help of my mastermind group.
Rock Your Business! – Your Book as YOUR Business Card (Available March 5, 2012)