Over the last 5 years, I’ve been fortunate to be in several great mastermind groups with some incredible people. I can honestly say those groups have been the biggest key to improving my business and myself over the years.
There is no one size fits all formula for a Mastermind. I’ve seen dozens of groups and each one is unique. But they all have a few things in common.
In this post, I wanted to share my experience in the four different mastermind groups I’ve been a part of to show you how they can be different. I’m also going to show give you a few reasons why I’m so crazy about Masterminds and the benefits they provide.
Finally, I want to tell you about how I came to know Dan Miller of 48 Days (actually through one of my groups) and created a course about how to start your own mastermind group!
I started in a small mastermind group before I even knew what a mastermind group was. It was a small group that consisted of 2 other guys and meeting every Monday morning at 7am at a Starbucks in Nashville. We had common goals and kept that group going until one of the members moved from Nashville. That was the first time I really had other quality friends keeping me accountable and tracking my progress which made a huge difference in my life and business.
The second mastermind group I was fortunate enough to be a part of was held on Skype every Friday morning with 8 other members from all over the world from Dubai to Utah. My coach at the time led the group and was kind enough to let me join. This was one of the first times I was truly over my head. I knew I didn’t deserve to be on those calls. The other guys had outrageously successful businesses, I was just starting out. But that became the motivation for me. It completely changed my mindset and kept me humble.
The third group I joined a year later was led by a good friend of mine in Nashville. It’s a local group that meets at a cigar shop every Friday afternoon consisting of 6 guys. Because I recently moved from Nashville to Dallas, I’m not able to be a part of the local group anymore. That was one of the toughest parts of leaving Nashville. I’d developed incredible relationships with the guys in that group as a result of the quality time we spent together.
The most recent mastermind group, I started here in Dallas with six guys from all over. Because of that, we run it on Skype. It’s definitely a different dynamic than meeting in person and something you need to take into consideration. (Dan Miller has some really good insights on this in our course.) Moving my business to a new place has been fun and challenging but this mastermind group has really pushed me forward and kept my momentum up. We follow the same structure for our group as Dan does as well.
Through my time in these these different groups, I definitely made mistakes and learned my share of lessons. And I wanted to share those with you. There’s no doubt that I could NOT have accomplished everything that I have without the support, accountability and friendship of the guys that were in these groups.
So let’s dive in!
Weekly Masterminds have kept me constantly motivated more than anything else I’ve tried. I struggle a lot with the reasons behind what I do. My WHY. (Why am I doing this? Why is this worth it?) But second guessing
Being around the guys in a mastermind forced me to push ahead because I know it’s the right thing to do. In between groups, I found that it was much more difficult to stay motivated because I really didn’t have that group to be accountable to and inspired by. I don’t have employees around me because almost everyone I work with is virtual at my company.
When I was part of the first Skype mastermind with the brilliant entrepreneurs, the first few times I’d listen to what they had accomplished each week. When it came time for me to share, I would still be stuck on the same thing as last week.
It was embarrassing.
I knew that if I kept this up, it wouldn’t be long before they wouldn’t even take me seriously anymore. They didn’t mind that I wasn’t as far as they were in business. What mattered, was that I was consistently making progress. And if I wasn’t, there was no reason to be there.
It didn’t take long to get so sick of being stagnant that I manned up and just did it even though I didn’t have a clue what I was doing.
But that was the point. Neither did they the first time they started something new. It was a critical lesson I learned about pushing forward no matter.
Part of what I do for companies is help them create awesome marketing strategies. Usually, companies will have a marketing team that just needs some strategy and direction. I help create the roadmap for them.
If I don’t know the answer to a question, I find it, figure it out and make sure I have it down. This is great for consulting that any entrepreneur or consultant knows that it’s tough to keep this mentality compartmentalized.
I call it the consultant’s curse.
I think it’s a big reason why I’ve always found it difficult to set my ‘consulting mentality’ aside and expose my vulnerability when I don’t know something. But the trade-off is if I don’t open myself up, I’ll never let people in or learn from someone else who has gone through the same thing.
I’m a lazy guy. So if there’s an easier way to do something (aka ask someone who’s been down the same road), the dumbest thing in the world would be to waste time and energy making the same mistakes (aka doing it myself) so I don’t have to ask for help.
I immediately realized I needed to practice this… A LOT.
As I started letting my guard down little by little, something incredibly strange began to happen. I discovered I got 10x more out of each mastermind session. Sharing my vulnerabilities also enabled me to connect with the other members on a much deeper level, which resulted in incredible friendships that have lasted to this day.
I’m a recovering over-thinker. It’s my favorite form of procrastination. Whenever I don’t know anything I do a deep dive into researching it and put so much context around what I’m trying to figure out that I never actually do it. Then I usually get pissed at myself, try to make a snap decision and make the choose wrong. It can be an endless cycle.
One of the biggest ways my mastermind groups help me is being able to simply present a current problem or opportunity to them and gather different perspectives. Usually the right decision bubbles up and I know exactly how to move forward.
I remember one time we were talking about our wins for the week and I mentioned a new prospect I wasn’t sure about taking on and asked for feedback. A few of the guys started asking me about the potential for that client which brought up a lot of things that hadn’t occurred to me. After that quick discussion, I decided to bring the client on and they ended up being one of the best clients I’ve worked with.
Now hear me out on this… Masterminds give you excellent excuses to reach out to the biggest players your industry. Don’t think for a second that just because you are in a group doesn’t mean you can learn from people outside your mastermind.
That’s actually how I got to know Dan Miller. One of the guys in our group reached out to him and asked if he would chat with our mastermind group. Dan was kind enough to agree and we got to hang out with him and learn some incredible stuff.
Every few meetings, we bring in an awesome guest to speak to our group about a relevant topic. It energizes our group and the entrepreneurs that we bring in love doing it. Lastly, it’s a million times better than asking to buy someone a cup of coffee and pick their brain.
So what does it take to get started? Actually less than you think. If you are interested in learning more about starting your own mastermind group, we created this course that walks you through each step of getting started.
Here’s a few of the big questions Dan covers:
Why you Need a Mastermind Group?
How Do I Start a Mastermind Group?
Selecting the Members of your Group
How Do I Run a Mastermind Group?
These are short segments designed to give you the essentials and get you up and running with your own Mastermind group immediately.
If you are interested in the course, I have a special deal for Fluxe readers. If you use this link, you can get 50% off the course now: How To Start Your Own Mastermind Group
And of course it’s risk free. If you don’t like it, you can get 100% refund!
Joel Widmer is the Founder & CEO of Fluxe Digital Marketing—a content marketing shop that helps smart businesses create, produce and promote their content through a unique one-on-one interview process. When he’s not working, Joel can be found trying new restaurants with his wife, son, and daughter.