Business is becoming increasingly complex. And, just like "it takes a village" to raise a child, it takes an armada to grow a business.
This is the very reason we launched mastermind groups — to bring together a flotilla of like-minded business owners to share insights, experience, knowledge, and encouragement unavailable when growing your business in a silo.
Our first of many to come mastermind groups focused on helping business owners create a strategic blueprint for growing their business. Discussions ranged from the significance of a well-articulated vision on business decisions to proving one's business models to buttoning down habits to create a system of sustainable success.
It was transformative, really — for everyone who participated, including myself. Trusted bonds were formed. Resources were shared. Opportunities were spawned. And, most importantly, business-changing results were produced.
The Birth Of Mastermind Groups
Groups like these have been around since the days of Napoleon Hill. In his classic book, "Think and Grow Rich," he defined a mastermind group as “The coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony.”
Hill states that "No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third, invisible intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind." Who doesn't appreciate an extra brain, right?
There are peer support groups we may not normally recognize as such. For instance, a business advisory board, Weight Watchers, and Vistage are everyday examples of similar organizations among us. Each of these coordinated groups provide the coming together of people in support, encouragement, and knowledge-sharing that allows everyone to grow personally and professionally.
Mastermind Groups For Entrepreneurs
Many peer groups built around business growth are designed to provide collective support and encouragement for the participants.
What separates our mastermind group from most, in my humble opinion, is the facilitation by a trained business strategist and coach. Well-honed coaching skills strengthen the support among the participants, promote self-awareness, inspire action, and cultivate commitment, while creating an ROI that is priceless.
Here are a few of the business-changing lessons of a mastermind group:
Collective gathering, even when converging virtually, breaks the isolation and loneliness of growing a business. Nothing grows well, if at all, in a vacuum. Similarly, not everything goes as planned or intended when running a business. The social support and environment of transparency helps deal with the emotional fall out and exhaustion that often comes with growing a business.
Acquisition and assimilation of knowledge accelerates learning which sparks action.
Synnovatia's Strategic Thinkers Mastermind group was a great experience. While part of the group I created a long-term and short-term vision statement, designed and executed a 12-week plan, and developed and/or tweaked some crucial planning habits. I had attempted some of these practices before without much success, but the group's shared knowledge, insight, and support led to much better results.
This is one group where the whole is decidedly more than the sum of its parts. I learned as much from how the other participants tackled their own goals as I did from working on my own. If you find, as I do, that focused group input really improves your learning curve, then I highly recommend the Strategic Thinkers Mastermind!
Cindy Morefield, Artist, Scratching the Surface Studio
Structure fills in the gap between planning and implementation. Participants move from "thinking of planning to doing the planning and implementing actions" that lead to success. They move from merely staying afloat to moving ahead.
Everyone's an expert. Often ideas, concepts, and notions from thought-leaders and well-known experts are frequently shared among entrepreneurs as the end-all, be-all keys to success. That's accomodation not alteration. Breakthroughs occur when best practices are customized to fit you, your lifestyle, and strengths. Whatever best practice you follow, make it yours.
Participants recognize they are smarter than previously thought. Participation through sharing insights and knowledge, regardless of level of success or industry, lifts the cloud of self-doubt that plagues many business owners.
Opportunities are identified and shared. An environment of transparency and fellowship foster the exchange of currency, the most vital of which is trust. Confidence in a participant's business capability is a powerful network sharing tool.
Thinking expands along with the courage to seek larger projects than previously believed possible. Understanding the obstacles to progress, along with the identification of practical, applicable ways to remove them permanently, make the difference between a small struggling business to a more powerful sustainable business.
Business models are upgraded for today's economy. Entrepreneurship, by its very nature, is disruptive. Sadly, many businesses are using the same business model of a decade earlier. No wonder they struggle. Through shared assets and resources, business models are challenged, modernized, and proven to create greater profits.
During the 20+ years I’ve been working with business owners, so much has changed. Technological advancements, albeit welcome, add layers of complexity (and overwhelm) to small business. Strategy is more critical — and difficult — for entrepreneurs today to pave the way for your success.
One can't have too much support.