Thursday, 15 November 2012

For And Against Paying For A Mastermind Group

For and Against Paying To Attend A Mastermind Group

In a nutshell,
  • The overt business benefit of attending a Mastermind should be a 30% increase in profits within the year
  • The reason to believe a group will do it for you is its track record
  • What makes those I am talking about so very different is the fact they have been run for some twenty years in various guises and constantly deliver. 

In order to avoid paying a premium price for attending a fully-fledged mastermind group, people try to run their own groups. The apparent upside is obvious – it will be cheap; the downside is less obvious at first. The reality is that such a 'less expensive programme’:
  • Isn’t run by a professional with a clear process for growing a business or a clear process for facilitating a mastermind group
  • Doesn’t have enough tried-and-tested processes in place; things are made up as it goes along (AKA “real-time R&D”)
  • Doesn’t tie people in through a financial commitment
  • Doesn’t create huge expectations
  • Tends towards being a social event if the results-focus wanes.

On the other hand, a high price point anticipates a high-quality offering that delivers on the promise. The high price point keeps the following out of the room:
  • Cheapskates
  • Free-loaders
  • Basket cases

A premium price attracts people who:
  • look for like-minded and ambitious people
  • are able to afford to invest (time and money) in the growth of their business
  • are looking for support from experts and colleagues 
  • want to be working with an ‘expert’ is their field using a tested, proven process and ‘ology’
  • are looking for space to
    • think strategically
    • talk through specific issues
    • have their feet held to the fire.

So, the price point goes some way to creating a self-selecting group of ambitious business owners and directors.

But what do they get? 

Well, I can only talk about my experience as a mastermind delegate and from running my own groups for the last 20 years.

The list of ‘soft’ benefits goes as follows:
  • an incredibly supportive and proactive group of like-minded business owners determined to help you grow your business
  • a mastermind expert, an acknowledged expert in their field (author, keynote speaker, been-there-done-it individual) who also has the facilitation and motivating skills to turbo-charge your thinking
  •  access to the network and ‘black book’ of the expert and your mastermind colleagues putting you in contact with potential suppliers and JVs
  • access to a tight and loyal ‘team’ or ‘club’ who will have experience of dealing with issues that are challenging you
  • new sales, referrals, recommendations
  • a better business from implementing processes and systems that roll out of your boardroom and through the business
  • the confidence to make tough(er) decisions and to follow them through.

Long term, the benefits can be seen by looking at a group I worked with 10 years ago and seeing the results for that group.

The 10 businesses were turning over just under £1.3 million (on average) back at the start of the decade. Some ten years later all are still in business (in some form) and the average turnover is now £15 million. More significantly, profit grew a staggering thirtyfold in the time period.

On average, the long-term performance of these businesses has more than outperformed the market. Maybe the programme just attracts high-performers.

Anyhow, what we can say is that those who choose to attend such programmes achieve above-average performance. 

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