I was on the phone with a friend this week who aspires to get his PhD in the next few years. They are notoriously difficult to complete — with deadlines sometimes years away and distant advisors, it’s easy to procrastinate and feel isolated in the task.
Despite the challenge, if you can push through the years of effort required to finish, having your PhD can change your career forever.
To me, it sounded a lot like trying to start a business.
I found myself repeating a version of something I’ve said on the podcast many times over the years:
“You should consider getting into a mastermind with other PhD candidates. Even if it’s just one other person to help keep you accountable to the goals you have for yourself. If for some reason you squander [this opportunity] or don’t stay on track you’d regret it.”
A mastermind is simply a small group of people, with similar goals, willing to help each other, through honest feedback, support and accountability, to achieve a difficult goal. The ones we’ve created over the years (for 100s of our members) generally meet twice a month on conference calls and, ideally, in person from time to time.
Taylor Pearson goes into some detail in this post about how you can make a mastermind work for you.
Most of our readers have, at least in their careers, a tremendous amount of ambition. And that ambition can quickly lead to feeling a bit isolated.
That’s part of the reason the word “mastermind” has been mentioned 100s of times on this blog, and countless more on the TMBA podcast.
Rotary clubs, colleagues and family often aren’t tuned in when you’re doing things — like building location independent businesses — that are barely on the mainstream’s radar.
And so we’ve pushed through with the help of this concept “mastermind.” Get yourself together with like-minds, with similar goals, and support each other in your efforts.
Over the years, we’ve been placing established entrepreneurs into masterminds, both at our in-person events and through the “mastermind rushes” that we hold in the Dynamite Circle twice a year. We hand-match DCers into small groups based on level of business experience, industry, current goals and time zones.
We’ve gotten pretty good at it. Our members report satisfaction rates of between 80 and 90%, which I think is good given all the variables at play when finding suitable people to invest your time with.
In the last two years alone, almost 600 people have been placed (and many hundreds more at our in-person events). Many of these masterminds remain active for years.
A few weeks ago, I sent an email to TMBA subscribers letting them know about our latest placement for established entrepreneurs.
And the response I got surprised me.
But I also got plenty of emails saying, “I don’t yet have an established business, that’s precisely why I’d like to be in a mastermind.”
And that makes sense. My first mastermind started well before I was making much money from my business. That didn’t mean I wasn’t willing to support others and grow together.
The emails made me feel there might be an opportunity to connect readers of this blog, who don’t yet have established businesses, with those who have similar goals of business success.
If you’re a reader of this blog who’s interested in joining a mastermind but hasn’t yet reached “liftoff” in your business, we’d like to hear your thoughts. We’re going to be building a small interest list based on anyone who drops their email below.
Do you have questions or comments about how masterminds work, or how you could create one of your own?
Feel free to email me (and my team) at Dan@TropicalMBA.com. We’ll answer the emails in podcast form to those who’ve indicated their interest.
PS, I’ve closed the comments section on this post because I don’t think it’s a productive place to post unfiltered mastermind solicitations, that just doesn’t work well for various reasons I’ll cover in the podcast we’re creating about our recent mastermind matching experiences.
Some older, but related posts: