Mastermind groups can range from just a few individuals to tens of thousands. Tim Montague, host of Clean Power Hour, recently spoke to two colleagues, Cliff Ravenscraft and Deacon Bradley, both of whom facilitate multiple mastermind groups.
What exactly is a mastermind group?
"It's really just a group of people who are coming together around some sort of shared goal," according to Deacon. "And it doesn't have to be the same goal." The idea is to support each other, to learn from each other, and accelerate results.
"Today I'm known as the Mindset Answer Man," says Cliff, who in 2008 started out his online brand as the Podcast Answer Man, where over more than a decade he trained 40,000 plus people how to successfully launch a podcast.
"I define a mastermind group as a group of two or more individuals who come together in a spirit of perfect harmony," Cliff says. "And this is a very key important phrase." In his experience, as a group gets larger, "I think it loses its effectiveness of the mastermind principle . . ."
How does a mastermind group work?
Both Deacon and Cliff like the "hot seat" model. "So every week, one of the members of my group, it's their turn, and they get to bring essentially whatever it is. There's no restriction on like, oh, this has to be a marketing problem or a sales problem or a team problem . . .," explains Deacon.
"My group is for founders and CEOs. And so one of the shared challenges amongst them is that there is a lot of hats that you wear . . . few people understand that tug of war, like a CEO, where everything depends on them," says Deacon.
"In the hot seat model, the floor is essentially theirs," he says. "And because you're in a room of other founders and CEOs, they all instinctively understand, at some level, what you're going through and have probably been through it themselves." Typically, the outcome is more ideas and a little bit more focus on where you should be going next, and often a sense of relief.
Cliff facilitates next level mastermind groups that are 90 minutes, with the first 20 minutes devoted to what he calls "wins of the week." This gives everybody in the group an opportunity to speak, he says, "and to share something that they are filled with gratitude about. It's like, hey, this is something exciting that's going on in my life. And it starts every meeting off on a positive vibe."
The typical hot seat model is great if you have an obstacle that you're facing, explains Cliff. But it has other opportunities too. "If you basically came up with a brand new idea, you think it's the coolest thing in the world, but it'd be kind of cool to get some constructive feedback, so you don't go out into the world blindly thinking that your stuff is just perfect."
"For me, the biggest benefit is clarity," adds Deacon. "And getting to accelerate your results by learning from other people's results. So you are essentially able to, depending on the size and experience level of the group, multiply the amount of thoughtful input into your decision-making process, so that you can make the best decision for you and your business."
To hear the complete interview, visit Clean Power Group Podcast. You'll hear answers to common questions about mastermind groups and learn more about the relationships and trust that sustain them.