How To Best Use A Mastermind Group

By Rick Houcek

Are you operating your life or business in a vacuum… making all the decisions yourself… no one to bounce off of?  Well, what if I told you that you were leaving money on the table and risking failure at every turn.  Let’s fix that!

An effective tool high achievers use, is an outside mastermind group, or eagle team, or accountability partners.  Do you have one?

I used to run mastermind groups.  Gathering smart people from different mindsets and disciplines – and bouncing off of them your biggest opportunities and thorniest problems – is a brilliant way to get ‘outside the paradigm’ to think and expand your options.

Imagine being in a room with 5 to 10 like-minded, success-driven, brilliant business thinkers who have your best interests at heart to help you tackle your problem or opportunity.

How you present your issue to the team is critical.  Let me give you an efficient 7-step process that you can do in 2 or 3 minutes.

Begin your 7 sentences with these words…

  1. “The issue is…” This is where, in 1 or 2 sentences, you define exactly what the heart of the problem is.
  1. “It is significant to me because…” Now, this is where you talk about effect on dollars, products, people, services, customers, vendors, your family, whoever, whatever. What you have to lose or gain.
  1. “My ideal outcome is…” This where you tell what you really want to happen so the team can clearly see the outcome you would most like to achieve.
  1. “Relevant background information is…” Well, this is where you would give short bullet points – 5, 6, 7 points of background to help them get their arms around what’s going on with the issue.
  1. “My options, as I see them, are…” This is where you tell them the various courses of action you could take that you’ve already pre-thought.
  1. The direction I’m headed or leaning, left to my own devices, is…” So, here’s where you identify to the team, “If I had to make this decision on my own, I would pick this option…”
  1. “The help I want from all of you, from the group, is…” So, now you are identifying, “What am I missing?  Help me see other options.  Where are my blind spots?  What would you do?  ”  Be crystal clear with the team precisely what you want from them.

Let me take it a step further.  I’ll now give you a specific example of all 7 in real life.

So, listen to this as if I’m presenting to you – as if you’re in my Mastermind Group – and I’m bringing a problem I’d like help with.  Or as if you have a problem you’d like to bring to your Mastermind Group.

Listen from both angles.  Here goes…

“My issue is… I have minimal web presence in my business.  I’m not using social media at all, and except for a website, I don’t have much out there, and I think it’s hurting me.   

It’s significant to me because… 1, I’m missing opportunities, and 2, I am leaving money on the table. 

My ideal outcome is… I want to be everywhere on the web.  I want to be recognized by my target audience as a thought leader.  I want people to find me.  I want to be driving revenue off the internet. 

Here’s some relevant background points… 

  • I have competitors with massive web presences and they’re getting opportunities and winning dollars that I’m not.
  • My website it out of date, it’s more than 10 years old.
  • People who buy my products are heavy social media users, so this seems like a natural.
  • I’m sure there are new products I could add that could have application on social media, but I’m drawing a blank
  • I don’t know any reliable, high-quality experts to help me jump-start my social media activity

My options, as I see them, are… well one is, I could do nothing different.  No change, hope for the best.  Not very appealing.  Second, I could create a web presence myself.  I’m not really skilled at it, but it is an option I could fit in when I have time.  Third, I could hire an expert… somebody to do it for me.  Fourth, I could create strategic alliances with other non-competing businesses that target my same customers and have strong web presences, and tag onto theirs.  

The direction I’m headed or leaning… is to hire an expert.  Frankly, I don’t have time to do this myself; I’m not the best at it; and I really would like to get somebody who knows what I don’t.  Creating strategic alliances could work too, but I think that’s down the road. 

And the help I want from all of you in the group is… What am I missing?  Where are the potholes?  What trouble looms ahead?  Is this a good idea in your minds?  What would you do if you were in my shoes and why?  Do you know anyone?”

So, there you see it.  The 7 points clear and simple, and a specific example.

Now, if you do all that, you’ve set up your Mastermind Group to give you great feedback.  And you’ll take quantum leaps in your success.


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