A Mastermind Group is simply a group of business owners with a common goal (to improve their businesses) who meet up regularly to :
- discuss their businesses
- share ideas and experiences
- provide advice, guidance, suggestions and support
- encourage and help each others businesses to improve and grow.
In many ways, a Mastermind Group could be considered to be a “Board of Directors for Small Business.
Mastermind Group meetings are held on a regular basis and would typically be in person (face to face), but don’t necessarily have to be. Mastermind meetings can also be conducted online or even over the phone.
There is not necessarily a specific size/structure/agenda for the “perfect” mastermind group, as this will depend on the nature of each groups member businesses, but there are usually some (preferably simple) rules or guidelines defined by members to help the group operate effectively.
On this site, we have collated some suggestions as to some of the “Mastermind Group Rules” that we have found useful, and also provide information about how you can Create or Join a Mastermind Group, and resources to make it easier for you to find and contact existing mastermind groups which may be relevant to you.
Types of Mastermind Groups
Although Mastermind Groups have some commonalities (i.e. meet regularly, share ideas and experiences, accountability, etc…) there are many variations as to how they are managed and facilitated. This section outlines a few of the more common “Types” of Mastermind Groups”
A fully Facilitated group is typically created and managed by a professional organisation which specialises in running Mastermind Groups.
Facilitated Groups can be a great introduction to Masterminding as they tend to be fairly tightly structured with a clearly defined agenda, and have a full-time facilitator to make sure things move along smoothly.
These types of groups typically have a pre-determined life cycle (often 6 or 12 months) and members are usually chosen by the facilitator.
A “committee” managed Mastermind Group is not usually as formal or structured as a Facilitated Group, but still has a clearly defined agenda.
These types of groups tend to be a bit larger and are facilitated by an elected or volunteer “committee”. They may not actually see themselves as a “mastermind group” – they may consider themselves to be a “networking” or “lead generation” group – however, they still usually meet many of the criteria of a Mastermind Group :
- meet regularly
- share ideas and experiences
- offer advice feedback and support
- hold members accountable for goals
One important way these types of groups differ is that membership tends to be a bit more fluid, i.e. not everyone attends every session and new members come and go regularly. The downside to this is that it makes it harder for members to be completely honest about their business (warts and all) as there is not the same level of trust or confidentiality which other types of Mastermind Groups offer.
Self Managed Mastermind Groups (my favourite type) tend to be smaller (3-6 members) and much less formal. Although it is still very important to have ground rules, the rules and agenda tend to be a bit (sometimes a lot) less structured.
Often these groups are created initially by existing Friends/Business Contacts who naturally start to share ideas and help each other with their businesses. Adding Mastermind rules and a simple agenda provides a more effective and efficient way to set goals, provide feedback and hold each other accountable.