Us entrepreneurs could take a cue from tiny toddlers when it comes to running our businesses.
You see, kiddos in their terrible twos are venerable pros at a few curious things.
Tantrums. Making messes. And asking questions.
So. Many. Questions.
We, the grown-ups, should be asking questions at a similar rate as wee ones.
“Successful people ask better questions and as a result, they get better answers,” says Tony Robbins, a guy who knows a thing or two about success.
This is particularly true when you’re considering joining a mastermind group for small business.
Every mastermind group is different. Some are better than others. Some are a better fit for a certain kind of business owner.
The questions you ask are the only way you can determine whether a mastermind group is going to be the right fit for you and your unique situation.
These are the 10 questions you NEED to ask before joining a mastermind group for small business.
First: The Questions You Need to Ask Yourself
1. What do I want to get out of being in a mastermind group for small business?
You gotta know yourself first.
Figure out your goals and expectations for a mastermind group so you can make sure the group you pick is well-suited to what you want.
Your goals might be to get some actionable advice on a specific business challenge and to pass your own lessons and business battle scars so they’re not for naught.
Your expectations might be that group members are well-matched and that there is a structure and framework for working together.
You need to know what you want and need so you can find a group that delivers all the juicy benefits of a mastermind group.
2. What types of people do I want to be in a mastermind group with?
Do you want to be surrounded by a diverse group of people, of all different ages, backgrounds, industries, and experience levels?
OR do you want to join a mastermind group for a specific kind of business owner?
3. Am I prepared to be open and vulnerable?
Masterminds can feel like entrepreneurship therapy sessions sometimes. You have to be willing to open up about what’s going on behind the scenes. You gotta be real and go deep.
You also have to be willing to listen to opinions and take advice.
We’re all protective of our business babies, but if you get defensive and refuse to hear what someone is telling you, you’re not going to get any value from a mastermind.
Ask yourself if you’re truly ready to let your walls and defenses drop.
4. Am I ready to commit?
Masterminds require a level of commitment from their members. What that commitment looks like depends on the group.
Some masterminds meet regularly, some check in daily online, some only meet a couple of times a year in person.
Whichever group you choose, you need to be all in. Your fellow members are going to depend on you to show up and actively participate.
No flakiness. No bailing. No texting during meetings.
The Questions You Need to Ask the Organizer of a Mastermind Group for Small Business
5. What makes your mastermind group great?
Every mastermind group will claim to be awesome, valuable, the best, etcetera.
To figure out what makes a group different, and whether it’s the right fit for you, ask the organizer to zero in on what exactly makes the group great. What sets it apart from the rest?
6. What’s your process for forming groups and matching group members?
A mastermind group with the wrong people or the wrong mix of people can be a hugely frustrating waste of time and money.
A mastermind group for small business is only as good as its members and how well-matched those members are. After all, it’s all about connecting with one another.
Always ask the organizer how they go about forming their groups. What are their criteria for selecting members and matching them with one another?
Make sure they have a process in place that works to make sure the group dynamics will be successful and the vibes will be good.
7. What kind of people can I expect to be matched with?
Some mastermind groups attract a specific kind of entrepreneur. But it’s not always obvious from an organizer’s website.
Ask the organizer directly about the kinds of business owners they work with, and who you can expect to be placed in a group with. Their answer will help clarify your decision.
8. What’s the structure of the meetings, and where and how often do meetings take place?
Obvious but super important.
The details on meeting places, times, frequency, and structure are not always readily available, so you’ll have to reach out and get the scoop yourself.
This info is crucial to your choice of mastermind group. If the group meetings are too frequent, or too infrequent, you won’t be able to fully commit.
If the structure sounds disorganized, that might also be a red flag for you, depending on what you’re after.
9. What if I don’t jive well with the group?
If the group isn’t working out well for you, what are your options? Can the organizer match you with a different mastermind? Can you cancel with a refund?
Know your options before you sign on the dotted line.
Remember: the right group dynamic is essential to a mastermind. If it’s lacking, you want to make sure you haven’t completely wasted your investment.
10. How do you measure the success of this mastermind group?
Organizers may shout about the success of their mastermind group from the internet’s rooftops, but what does success *really* mean for a mastermind group for small business?
Is it glowing testimonials from members? Is it some kind of metric from members’ own businesses? Is it a high member retention rate?
Ask the organizer to define what success means to their mastermind group, so you can judge for yourself whether it’s a mastermind you believe in.
BONUS QUESTION: Can I ask a current member a few questions?
Talking to a current member of a mastermind group you’re looking into can be hugely valuable in terms of deciding whether it’s the right group for you.
Be prepared for a “nope,” though. Many organizers will cite privacy concerns when turning down your request.
But others might see the value in opening the curtain a little bit and will, with permission, connect you to a current member.
Then you can ask all your burning questions about how the group actually functions and what it actually looks like in practice.
For a downloadable PDF that includes all these questions and a space to record the answers, click here. You can have it right in front of you and use it as a guide when talking to mastermind organizers.