Creating A Master Mind

Napoleon Hill who wrote the book ‘Think and Grow Rich’ in 1937 (Chapter 10 – ‘The Power of the Master Mind’) talks about forming master mind groups.  The idea goes back thousands of years.

Essentially, ask three, four or five people to join you in a master mind.  You need at least three people in a group and no more than six.  Four or five in total people is ideal.

You can only really do this with people you know like and trust.  Make a list of people and ask if they’d be interested in forming a group.

You can either form a group with people within your organisation, with people within your market or industry or with people who are not your competition but have a similar aim, such as to flourish in business.

Essentially you’re forming a mini association, club, call it what you will.

When thinking of who to ask to join your group also ask yourself what kind of help, knowledge and skills do you need?  Who can you ask for help?  What kind of help can you offer your colleagues?   Who can you team up with for mutual benefit?

When you have your group it’s a good idea to have an initial meeting face to face.  Here’s a suggested agenda of what you might discuss obviously you can add and delete questions as you see fit (and I suggest someone writes down what’s been agreed and circulates the notes to everyone after the meeting).

  • Short intro from each person, ie who you are (just two to three minutes each).  You might want to tell us a little of your personal background and business experience or your career to date.
  • What’s the purpose of the master mind? – To discuss among the group – Is it specifically about creating a speaking career, or about building a business or just to act as a support group?
  • Each person to state what they want/expect from the master mind.
  • If it’s agreed expectations can be met then…
  • Each person to state what they’ll be able to contribute to the group, what skills, knowledge, resources do you have?
  • What is the format going to be? (I’ll give a couple of examples first).
  • How long will the meetings last?
  • How often will they be?
  • Who will chair them?
  • Where will they be held?  At a venue or via Skype?
  • Will there be support between meetings?
  • Do you want more people in the group if so who?
  • How often will you review the format, frequency of meetings and if they’re working?
  • Exit strategy – when will you know enough is enough and how to bow out gracefully.
  • When will the next meeting or meetings be?
  • What happens next?
  • Any other business.

I’m one of a group of six, we meet for a whole day once every two months.  We take it in turns to host the day which could be in our homes or in a rented hotel room.  Sometimes there are only four or five of us as there are times when some of us can’t make it to a meeting.

Our meetings normally start at 9.30 am and we plan to finish about 4.30 pm.  We have a lunch break, a comfort break in the morning and one in the afternoon.

I know one mastermind with four people and they meet weekly for 30/35 minutes via Skype or Zoom.  During one meeting just one person is in the hot seat to have their issue, challenge or opportunity addressed.  A different person has their issue, challenge or opportunity addressed at each meeting.  For the first five minutes of each meeting the person who was in the hot seat at the last meeting reports what happened since the last meeting.

Traditionally the way a mastermind meeting is conducted is very simple and is as follows.  Ideally you’ll need someone to keep time as it’s so easy to over run.

To begin with we each take 10 minutes to update the group on what’s happened since the last meeting and the results of the actions we said we would take.

After a short break we each then have 40 to 55 minutes to discuss an issue, challenge or opportunity.  Usually to do with our businesses but it could be something personal.

The process:

  1. The person in the hot seat states the issue, challenge or opportunity
  2. The rest of the group ask clarifying questions
  3. A discussion about the solutions ensue (suggestions can be stated or questions about suggested actions can be made)

At the end of that person’s turn they have to state the actions they’ll do by the next meeting.

Then each person takes turns to state their issue, challenge or opportunities and listen to solutions and state the actions they are to take.

At the next meeting each person has to report the results of their actions.  If they haven’t done it they have to state why.  This accountability encourages action to be taken.

If you’d like to make things interesting you could suggest if an action is not done then they have to pay some sort of a forfeit such as making a donation to a nominated charity.

In between meetings you can also phone or contact each other with support.  We have a closed Facebook group to keep in touch between meetings too.

When the group is ready to disband or you are ready to leave the group then say so.  This is not a pact for life.