8 Ways to Get Accountability in Mastermind Groups
The Success Alliance


8 Ways to Get Accountability in Mastermind Groups

We’re used to people with power holding others accountable, like a boss or a parent. As a mastermind group facilitator, you don’t hold those types of power, so your accountability system needs to be structured, intrinsic and persuasive.

Accountability is an important benefit for members of a mastermind group and is often one of the reasons they join your group. As a mastermind group facilitator, you ensure your members’ success by making sure they get into action around their plans. So how do you hold your members accountable for getting things done (without pulling your hair out)?

Write it down and share it

Social scientists tell us that people accomplish more when they write down their goals and tasks. They also stay on target when they share these goals with others.

Ask your members to write down their goals and task plans, and share those with the group. They can do this via email, on a private message forum, or in a cloud-based shared document using something like Google Docs or Evernote. It helps if you take notes about what members commit to in meetings, then share that with the group, so there’s no confusion about what a member said.

In your mastermind group meetings, make sure there is time in every meeting for members to share their big-picture goals and detailed task list, and which tasks they have completed towards those goals. In your mind, you’re always looking for alignment: are they doing the right tasks, in the correct order, to achieve those goals? Sometimes members do the right task at the wrong time – then they have to go back and fix the tasks they missed, slowing them down.

Judgment versus accountability

You cannot force a mastermind group member to take action. And you cannot stand in judgment of their decisions about which tasks and projects to work on first.

Your job, as a mastermind group facilitator, is to stay neutral while still encouraging members to excel.

Instead of saying:

“How in the world did you miss this crucial deadline?”


“In our last meeting, you said that you had a big deadline and you had three tasks to complete by that deadline. I’m curious about why you didn’t meet the deadline and what you will do now.”

“I noticed that you’ve had the same task on your action plan for the past two meetings. How important is this task?”

Accountability quick tips

  1. Set the expectation that members will accomplish the tasks they’ve committed to finishing. It doesn’t help if you always let things slide and don’t ask them about their task accomplishments.
  2. Help members understand why they’ve chosen the goal and tasks. This helps keep their motivation high.
  3. Recognize their efforts verbally in front of the group.
  4. Ask the group to acknowledge the member who reaches a big milestone or has a big win – peer accountability is a powerful force and a little applause goes a long way towards keeping people on track.
  5. When a member doesn’t get things done, ask from a place of curiosity rather than criticism. Don’t allow other members to be critical…teach them how to neutralize their questions around the member’s commitment.
  6. Plan for check-ins between meetings, so you will know if the member is on track.
  7. Suggest that members have an accountability partner they meet with regularly to discuss where they are with their tasks and goals.
  8. Pay attention in every meeting, looking for members who consistently are not reaching their targets (or not setting targets at all).

Reminding your members about why they want to achieve their goals, and why they want to keep in the good graces of the entire group, will help them to move forward. After all, they joined your mastermind group so they could create more success in their lives – shouldn’t they work towards that on a daily basis?

3 thoughts on “8 Ways to Get Accountability in Mastermind Groups”

  1. Laurie says:

    Very interesting information. Some of this is obvious BUT when it’s articulated in a logical way, it clarifies the message. Thanks Karyn.

  2. Rosie Kaplan says:

    Very timely reminder! And my mantra is their success or achievement is not my responsibility! I have one difficult group at the moment. Most of them are so ungrounded I spend my time tethering them to something practical!

    1. Karyn Greenstreet says:

      Like a shepherdess, Rosie. 🙂

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