Creating your own mastermind group, whether for your own participation or as a for-profit service that you offer to others, will help you to grow your business. There are many factors that impact the success of your group, but one of the most important is in selecting the right mastermind group members. Who do you want to be part of your dream team?
I have been involved with creating and running mastermind groups since 1994, and I’ve been teaching my class, Start a Mastermind Group Today for over 10 years. In all that time, these are the factors that come up consistently, and are the most important when selecting the right people to be part of your mastermind group.
Top 5 factors in selecting the best mastermind group members:
- Commitment – No mastermind group will function for long if people are not willing to make a sustained commitment to the group. Commitment comes in two forms. The first type of commitment means showing up for every meeting without excuse and participating fully. This is a commitment to the group. The second type of commitment is to the mastermind group process itself, being willing to jump into the goal-setting and action-planning so that members can achieve the success they desire. This is a commitment to yourself.
- Balanced Two-Way Sharing – The true benefit of a mastermind group is the brainstorming that happens when one member presents a problem, challenge or decision, and the entire group gets involved with the discussion. The best members are those who are willing to both ask for help and give help. Sometimes you will find members who either want to hog the limelight or who never ask for help at all. Finding members who will participate in a full and balanced way goes a long way towards making a successful group.
- Follows the Guidelines – Every mastermind group should have written guidelines about what’s acceptable behavior. Group members should vote on these guidelines so that everyone is in agreement, and every group member must abide by the guidelines. Remember, you are trying to create a spirit of harmony and trust with your mastermind group; guidelines help to set the boundaries and create a safe place for everyone.
- No Competitors – It is impossible for someone to be open about their problems, or about their great idea, if one of their competitors is listening in. When selecting your mastermind group members, be diligent about the connections between people and separate competitors into different mastermind groups if necessary. This is also true of client-vendor relationships: vendors won’t be able to be honest about what’s going on in their business if their customers are in the same room.
- Similar Success and Experience Levels – One way to guarantee that your mastermind group will fail is having people at different experience levels in it. What ends up happening is the more experienced members mentor the less experienced members, but get no real value for themselves. While being in a mastermind group with people who are more successful than you can be great for you, eventually the more experienced members quit the group in frustration. Instead, try to find people who have similar levels of experience and success. Find people who have some special expertise that they can bring to the group. For instance, if one member has 20 years of experience in the industry, and another is brand new to the industry but has 20 years of experience in managing teams, they can both learn from each other. If each member brings their expertise and strengths to the group, the group wins.
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I would not be successful today if it weren’t for the mastermind groups that I have been a part of. They’re extraordinarily powerful, and the people find support, encouragement and solutions in them.
By taking your time when finding and onboarding new members, you’ll have a successful and productive group for years to come.