5/14/2018 2 Comments
The Skinny on Masterminds and Roundtables & a Checklist to Find YOUR Mastermind
Mastermind groups will delete everything you know and control your mind.
No. Stop. That was some futuristic thriller starring either Will Smith or Matt Damon.
Masterminds and roundtables are actually REALLY useful, if not necessary tools for any business owner today. Being a small business owner or start-up can be like operating in solitary confinement. You ask questions of the guard on duty and sometimes the imaginary guy in the corner. Basically, you often get random tidbits or non-existent advice about your business strategy.
Unlike solitary confinement, small business owners are generally short on time, and they don't particularly want to rehash all of the backstory of their business and all the unique nuances each time they hunt down an expert to help consult on a particular matter.
And many don't particularly like forking over operating capital for business advice either.
That's where mastermind groups come in. They are your business peers, many times from unrelated industries or fields, that operate essentially like an advisory board for your business. Some may be more casual in approach allowing general discussion. Others are more regimented with strict time allowances for each point on the agenda. Some meet over a bottle of wine or two, while others forbid alcohol and refreshments and get straight down to business.
Mastermind groups meet regularly exploring what's going well in your business, what your business' roadblocks are, and whatever matter du jour you need input on. Some can get personal because personal and business often spill over from time to time. Going through a divorce? Your mastermind team member may offer up some great advice on buy-sell agreements, or connect you with a great business attorney with expertise in that area.
You can find masterminds and roundtables through local business organizations and meet-ups, through business incubators and accelerators, and an online search.
Checklist: Find Your Mastermind
Here's a checklist if you are interested in finding your mastermind tribe:
1. What is your structure and operating parameters? More formal or informal? What are the group sizes?
2. Where do you meet, at what times, and at what frequency? How long do meetings generally last? What is the time commitment both in and outside of the mastermind meetings?
3. Do you have ground rules or a member agreement? What are the requirements for attendance and punctuality? What fees are associated with joining?
4. How long of a commitment are members asked to make or is it flexible?
5. How do you protect confidentiality?
6. How do you match up groups? What if I don't seem to be clicking with my group?