Start With a Core Mastermind Group, Then Build From There
The Success Alliance


Start With a Core Group, Then Build From There

Many mastermind group facilitators try to fill a 15-person group, often ending up in hot water because they can’t find the 15 people to join at the same time.

Build your core group

Here are a few tips to help you out of this dilemma:

  • Start with a core group of two or three members, as long as they’re willing to consistently show up.
  • Get your guidelines in place and have a few meetings. This will help to solidify the group and work out any kinks.
  • It will give you practice as the facilitator and help assure you that group agenda design is workable.
  • It also allows you to get feedback and testimonials from existing members.
  • Of course, you then have an existing group to invite new members to!

Next, think about when it’s time to add more members. Do you want two or three meetings to practice and stabilize the meeting routine before adding new members?

If you are ready to add new members, how many do you add? Don’t add too many all at once. I’d rather see you add a small cohort of new members rather than include 10 new members at once. This will help them to assimilate into the existing group and allow for group cohesion. As the facilitator, you want to help people to fit in and feel welcome, and not allow cliques to form among the “old members” versus the “new members.” It’s all about inclusiveness.

Growing your group from the core

There are many things to consider when you add new members to an existing group. Personality traits and individual goals either help a group to be more cohesive or can break a group apart. Consider creating an outline of what type of people you’re looking to add to your group, then interviewing people based on that checklist.

Keep repeating the addition of new members until you think the group is “full.” Every facilitator will have different criteria for how big a group they can manage effectively.

If a member drops out, pause and think about the remaining members. If they are working well together, would a replacement member be an asset to the group, or will it slow down group dynamics? As the group facilitator, one of your jobs is to create rapport and trust among the group members — both the existing members and any new members that are added to the group.

Need help with how to select members for your group? Read my blog post How to Choose the Best Mastermind Group Members for ideas.

Want to learn how to start a mastermind group? Click here to get my free video tutorial on how to create a mastermind group of your own.

5 thoughts on “Start With a Core Group, Then Build From There”

  1. Carolyn says:

    I thought I wanted ten in my first group but I started with five. I have only added one more member in almost three years. That number is perfect for me.

    1. That’s a good idea, Carolyn: start small and keep adding until it feels perfect for you. I had a group once that started with 12 people. Over the course of the first year, three dropped out. We all voted NOT to replace them with new members, and the 9 of us had a great mastermind group…perfect for us! You’ll know when your group is the “right size” for you. 🙂

  2. Debora McLaughlin says:

    Great point, starting with a core group and then adding more! With my new book coming out, Running in High Heels, I was planning to launch a women’s CEO mastermind group, and a leadership group as well, after having taken your excellent Mastermind Group Accelerator marketing class. I have been hesitating thinking I needed to do many speeches and marketing events to fill the two mastermind groups — but you are right, I can start as a core group and vote people in and make that part of the guidelines. Thank you for this!

    1. Karyn Greenstreet says:

      Congratulations on your book, Debora! I think starting with small mastermind groups will give you space to tweak and play with them before opening them up to a larger audience. You may find, as people read your book, they’re inspired to find out more about you and your mastermind groups. Natural attraction in action!

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