A mastermind group: a peer-to-peer mentoring concept used to help members solve their problems with input and advice from the other group members. *

In 2014, I, along with a few like-minded women, started a mastermind group. It has been an amazing journey with some astounding results: one member stop putting off her dreams and moved to the coast, another left corporate America to open a yoga studio and now owns four, one is in the process of taking a sabbatical to travel the work, and another is pursuing her passion working with an elephant rescue organization. What mighty accomplishments for such a small group!

Because of the impactful and positive pro-activity mastermind has brought to my life, I wanted to share some tips and insights into how you too can begin your own mastermind.

Five factors to begin with

1. Find your purpose
2. Name your mastermind
3. Define your expectations
4. Develop a format
5. Follow through

Questions to consider

If you cannot answer these questions with a compelling and in-depth response, a mastermind may not be the right platform for you right now.

The hot seat

One of the most beneficial exercises of a mastermind is the Hot Seat. Each member of the group has a turn in the Hot Seat, where the focus is on them and their goal. They have a set amount of time to speak about their goal, their challenges, and what they would like to achieve. The rest of the group will then use their knowledge and resources to offer advice and suggestions.

The Hot Seat is a time to be open, honest, and frank, but be aware, it’s called the Hot Seat for a reason. The person in the Hot Seat must be prepared to hear things that they may not like, but they should understand, that being open to criticism, and to change, is a step towards overcoming a challenge.

My mastermind

When my mastermind was formed, we did so with the understanding that our members would be held accountable to very clear and high standards. It was important for us to know that every single one of us was truly committed to the group.

Some masterminds operate with more fluidity, and some are stricter; at ours we set guidelines to help us stay on track and achieve our goals:

The expectations

• You have a BHAG (big, hairy, audacious goal)
• You accept that you will be held accountable
• You are ready to be and live in your brilliance
• You want to grow and expand both yourself and your business or career
• You must be in control of your schedule; the ability to commit to our meeting dates is sacred.
• You are committed to sharing your gifts, talents, experiences, findings and strengths to others with unabashed generosity.
• You must bring your emotional intelligence and your vulnerability.
• You agree to bring your A game; be present, be committed, be engaged.
• You are willing to be pushed beyond your comfort zone.
• You understand that everything you see and hear is confidential. What happens in Mastermind, stays in Mastermind.

What we do

• Create and take action on BHAGs
• Brainstorm ideas
• Challenge assumptions
• Create accountability
• Listen and provide feedback
• Support each other with honesty, respect, and compassion

Belonging to a mastermind has brought immeasurable value to my life and to my career.

It has contributed to the growth of my business and has allowed me to further my passion of making an impact on the life of others.

If you do join or start your own Mastermind, remember that you DO matter, your knowledge and gifts are invaluable. Go in with an open mind, an open heart, and don’t be afraid to leave it all on the field!

*Source: Wikipedia

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