For as long as I can remember within my business career, I’ve had a coach!
It was never initially intended that way, I didn’t write into my start up business plan or actively go out and seek one. But from the days of ‘mentoring’ I got from a successfully retired Business owner I met at my first ever Business Network event, or the guidance I got from the Entrepreneur and philanthropist I lived opposite from.
All the way through to the tens of thousands of pounds, and thousands of miles I’ve travelled to sit in the room of one of the greatest and sharpest minds I’ve had the pleasure to call coach/mentor/friend. Throughout my business career, I can sit and look through my business balance sheet, my cash flow forecast, my P&L account and see exactly where and when I was being coached, when I listened and implemented and the results that subsequently unfolded!
I have no doubt whatsoever that it’s the best professional development for business owners (bar none), but it’s not for everyone …
Here are 7 (objective) reasons why you shouldn’t apply to join a mastermind:
1. You feel guilty investing in yourself.
I didn’t realise this was a thing.
I recall to this day, a conversation with one of the most successful business owners I’ve ever had the privilege to work with. They had invited me to join them at a Black tie awards dinner at a swanky hotel in London, at which they had been nominated (within their business category) as Entrepreneur of the Year. It was an amazing night, in a room full of exceptional business owners who had achieved some of the most amazing things, and a real privilege to amongst such distinguished company.
It was a few minutes before the category they had been nominated for was to be announced, when all of a sudden they leaned over and said:
“I had to get past the guilt to join the mastermind.”
I wondered — Did I do something to make them feel guilty?
They continued, “I don’t think twice about investing in the business. A printer, a van, an office no problem. But before I joined mastermind, I never invested in my own personal growth like that. I felt guilty, but the more I thought about it … the more I realised how much more important it is to invest in my mindset and decision making so that I have the knowledge and confidence to know what is right for the business.”
“You will never overcome any problem, using the same level of thinking as that which caused it” -Albert Einstein
2. You don’t have the time
I really want to work with Michael, but right now he needs to say “No” to more things rather than add something else to his plate. Currently whilst Michael IS the bottleneck within the businesses ability to SCALE, he is also the lifeblood of the business (Having build support staff to support HIM).
Our Mastermind demands a minimum of 24Hrs a month commitment (and sometimes more). Unless you can fully embrace the process, you are unlikely to see all it can offer, and that would be both incongruent with our values, and not aligning with your own.
3. You think coaching should be free
If this is you, don’t apply, you are simply not ready.
Every top-performer I’ve met who has a coach invests in that coach to hone their craft. It doesn’t matter if it’s in education or industry.
“The most expensive advice you will ever get, is that given for free”
You get what you pay for, and when you give nothing, you get even less in return. Whilst a coach’s success shouldn’t be judged by the cost of investment. While ever you see it as a cost NOT an investment, you simply not ready to embark on all coaching has to offer!
4. Not all masterminds are created equally
Since I first joined my first ever Mastermind, I’ve seen a plethora of different ways as to how the coach/facilitator conducts these. According to their interpretation of the term and their preference as a business model.
For example when I joined one mastermind over 10 years ago now, I trusted it would be a positive experience:
- The facilitator had years of experience as a member in a mastermind
- The group was diverse and all appeared keen to learn.
- The community was a generous one. Selfish individuals were not allowed to join.
- The facilitator shared resources to accelerate members’ development and freely shared ideas.
All ‘looked’ good. But I left just 5 months later (It was important to give it time to settle and for me to confirm my concerns) after I became to realise this was more masterclass than mastermind! The facilitator always arranged the seating into more of a classroom format than a round table. They stood whilst we all sat, and the day was predominantly asking them for guidance and advice, and learning how they had tackled this, rather than a group discussion and benefitting from all others knowledge and experience.
Some questions I’d ask if I was new to a mastermind:
- Has he ever been in a mastermind?
- How often does the group meet? Is it virtual or face-to-face?
- Who is an ideal member of the community?
- What do current members say about the mastermind?
- Can I talk to a member?
- Is there a contract?
- Is there a discount if I pay for the year in full?
- Why do members leave the mastermind?
- How big are each Mastermind? (At My TrueNORTH they are considered “full” at 10 … I’ve heard of masterminds as big as 100. Which sounds more like a lecture vs a collaborative group).
5. You have a personal board of directors
We refer to our mastermind as your “personal board of directors” or “the board you CAN afford!”
If you already have 5-10 people that you can be candid with and admit not only what you don’t know but how you’ve made a big mess at your organisation, then you probably don’t need a mastermind.
This is uncommon. One reason mastermind groups are so powerful: they connect otherwise isolated leaders into a thriving and compassionate community.
The best part of this “personal board of directors” is that they won’t fire you. We’ll tell you the hard truth, share ideas of how to win, and cheer you on along the way.
It’s more comfortable to lead with blinders on
Many leaders struggle with self-awareness and don’t reflect on how to improve. Other leaders ignore “feedback loops” and choose to focus on their own narratives.
Such a style of leadership is easier, no doubt, but usually only in the short run. In the long term, this kind of behaviour leads to blind spots and a regression of leadership ability.
I know a brave leader when I see one because those are the only leaders I work with. One common thread between these courageous leaders — they are more interested in working on their weaknesses, than gloating of their strengths! It may be embarrassing, but they want to know how they can be better.
They also don’t take feedback personally. It may sting at first, but elite performers are able to absorb criticism, hear the truth, and take action in order to grow.
Our community is a special place where this kind of feedback flows regularly. However, it’s not for everyone. Leadership is easier with blinders on which is why they say;
“Ignorance is bliss.”
6. You don’t read
Whilst it’s not compulsory, we do have a Mastermind Library and a recommended reading list.
“Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers” President Truman
There are some very talented leaders who don’t read because they’re dyslexic. That’s not what I’m talking about.
In my opinion, people who aren’t either reading the printed word or listening to audio are no better off than illiterate individuals.
We attract leaders who are hungry to grow and learn. So, if you don’t like to read (or listen to audio), I’d suggest you don’t apply for our #ADDAZERO Explorer Mastermind.
7. You’re selfish
There are givers and there are takers.
Some leaders want to win and think others have to lose for this to be a fact.
Some leaders want to “crush” the competition down the street to be NUMBER 1 at whatever cost. This ‘blinkered’ view of business is both unhelpful and un-necessary. Although we (your fellow Masterminders) WANT you to be successful. Not to the detriment of everybody else!
Explorer mastermind plays a different game. Our game is Significant AND sustainable. We define the rules (after all we invent them, don’t we?). We value win-win-win scenarios and share what works.
And there you have it. 7 genuine reasons why Mastermind is NOT for everyone. And, if any one of the reasons listed above resinates with you, thank you for reading, but I’d strongly recommend you STOP reading now!