Curriculum? Why have it?
How is curriculum and lasagna the same? Hmmmm is it?
Curriculum? Why have it?
How is curriculum and lasagna the same? Hmmmm is it?
By Stephanie Angelo and Adrianna Huff
Adrianna once wrote, “I had been talking with #HighStakesMastermindGroups about signing up for the mastermind groups and getting my real estate license for months, possibly years, but as my cursor hovered over the “Submit” button I was still full of fear. Thoughts like: Can I do this? Is this the right move?, What if I mess up?, ran through my head.”
According to Psychology Today,
“Fear is a vital response to physical and emotional danger — if we didn’t feel it, we couldn’t protect ourselves from legitimate threats. But often we fear situations that are far from life-or-death, and thus hang back for no good reason. Traumas or bad experiences can trigger a fear response within us that is hard to quell. Yet exposing ourselves to our personal demons is the best way to move past them.”
Fear is a normal human reaction. It originally protected us from lion attacks, but is still present in our everyday lives. I’m not exactly running from wild animals in my home in the suburbs, so why do I (did I) feel fear in this situation? In reality, it is because I was jumping into an unknown situation.
According to an article from the Harvard Business Review, “How Fear Helps (and Hurts) Entrepreneurs”, for many entrepreneurs, fear is a constant companion. Not only do you have fear of losing business, but all of your employees could also be hurt if the business is not successful. However, if entrepreneurs get stuck in this fearful mentality, they may find a more challenging climb for their business.
So, that begs the question, what should an entrepreneur do? Have a healthy level of fear. Simple enough, below are a few suggestions.
Fear is a double edged sword. It can propel entrepreneurs to greatness, or it can prevent them from getting any work done. How do you handle fear?
A friend of mine confided to me that she used to be in a mastermind group, but it simply didn’t work for her. Frustrated with the lack of dialogue and accountability, she left the group. I asked her questions about her past experience and why she thought it went wrong.
She said that the way their group worked was you had a schedule assigned for when you would be in the “hot seat”. Their group met on a monthly basis and so once a month there was someone who had the hot seat. Her hot seat assignment was four months after she began the group.
She initially joined the mastermind group because she really needed help growing her business. She had a lot of questions and concerns about the direction she was going and choices she needed to make. She wanted to test out new ideas and she wanted to feel like she had somebody that she could talk to. As a new business owner, anxious to have a strong start, she wanted to be able to “pick the brains” of the other members and gain from their insights. She was prepared for the emotional investment that she was going to make in helping each person with their business needs because she had a lot to offer as well.
By the time she got in the hot seat the issues that she had initially come with, when she became a member of the mastermind group, had either fallen by the wayside because she simply was too overwhelmed to address them, or they had become bigger problems, or were initiatives she decided not to try because she was afraid she would fail.
When she finally did get her scheduled chance to be in the hot seat it was of minimum value. Certainly, it had some, but it had significantly diminished from the reason she got into the mastermind group to begin with. Yet she felt like she had spent the last four months helping everybody else with their businesses – one person at a time. Having to wait to be in the hot seat sounds a little bit scary. It doesn’t hold conversational value.
There are a lot of mastermind groups that operate that way. In High Stakes Masterminds we just find that we succeed better doing it differently.
It was my members that decided that they prefer to meet every three weeks on a rotational basis. It has worked extremely well for us. It’s not too frequent contact, like every two weeks, and it’s not big gaps of time in between, like once a month. Monthly meetings also require that the meetings go really long. Having a meeting every three weeks works really well because of the frequency and having only six members per group we are able to keep our meetings moving along at an efficient 90 minutes each meeting. Listening to my clients offered a solution to this particular problem.
In our valuable 90 minutes everybody talks every meeting. I don’t call it the hot seat. I don’t personally like that term. But I do call it the “focus seat” and everybody gets a chance to be in the focus seat. In addition, everyone in the group also has time to give them feedback, thoughts, and ideas We have robust conversation around each person’s accountabilities and goals.
You have to shop groups and determine what works well for you. I know that my first group was a disaster for me because we met once a month. Everyone did have a hot seat opportunity, but the facilitator was also a member, and to be quite honest with you she failed in every way imaginable. That experience was a painful disaster. But it did propel me to a training program to become a mastermind facilitator. I’m doing it in what I feel is the right way for my avatar type clients.
How do you know if you’re an avatar type client for High Stakes Mastermind Groups? All it takes is a conversation, and I love having those with prospective members. If you’re cooling off from the hot seat idea learn if High Stakes is right for you.
I look forward to you being in the focus seat.
Do You Have Confidence and Confidants?
The subject of confidants came up in our #HighStakesMastermindGroups today, because within the groups we grow to have such a great deal of trust between members, that they really tell each other things that would not be said to anyone else. They know that what they say stays in the room because everybody signs a confidentiality agreement. But it does go farther than that, the members of the groups develop really close bonds and they become very comfortable in their ability to tell each other things that they would not be able to say to anybody else.
As their leader (and observer) that feels great because I know that I’ve been the catalyst in bringing these people together that become so close to one another. It is a little different for me because I don’t confide in them, so they really don’t have a lot of knowledge about my own personal life – and it needs to be that way. Although I feel very comfortable in the fact that if something really went ‘south’ and I needed them, I know they would be there for me.
Why it Matters
The journey to the top of your game, no matter what industry you are in, can be a very lonely one. Sometimes, it will seem like nobody really understands, from the professional challenges you face to the personal and social sacrifices that are sometimes involved with such a heavy time commitment.
As you climb the ladder, it’s important to build your personal network of support and confidants.
Confidants can help you in a number of ways. People that you meet in High Stakes Mastermind groups, for example, understand what challenges you’re facing because they are in the same positions and know those challenges to be true. Over time, a relationship and trust builds, which allow for the sharing of ideas and advice.
Confidants become even more important when you are self-employed because for much of the time, you’re likely working independently, or with your staff, without the aid of a corporate headquarters.
Often, this means that you have no peers to bounce ideas off of for solutions and strategies. Those you are working with are often not on the same level, so it’s a good idea to have confidants who are as successful and trained as you to discuss things with and to help you find solutions to unique problems.
Who Has Your Back?
One final argument for having confidants in a Mastermind group: because these people are often in other lines of work, they can become true confidants with nothing to gain from your industry secrets. And they “have your back”.
I’ll never forget how a former mentor of mine once said that Mastermind groups are to grow “confidence and confidants” – and I am very confident that we have successfully done both.
Guest Post by Adrianna Huff
Disclaimer: I have paid for my own Skillshare membership, and this post is not sponsored by Skillshare. (#NotAnAd)
I call myself a lifelong learner, and when I find a great learning resource (at an affordable price), I have to share it. I’ve heard about Skillshare for a while now in various articles and blog posts over the years, but it wasn’t until our CFO (Chief Focus Officer) Stephanie Angelo from the High Stakes Mastermind Group started presenting Skillshare videos that I picked up a membership and started watching.
Skillshare is an online learning platform where teachers post videos that students can watch. Typically there are also projects that can be completed. What is great about Skillshare, is that anyone with a membership can watch videos that are of interest. Learners do not have to enroll in classes, and there is feedback from instructors. New videos are posted constantly, and as of this blog post there are over 21,000 classes.
There are videos on all topics, from Photography to Productivity, and I found myself being drawn to and watching videos relating to Entrepreneurship, Passive Income, Productivity and Efficiency Measures, and Developing a Great Workplace.
Stephanie currently has two classes live on Skillshare, “How to Make Workplace Accountability Cooler Than Your Competitors Do” and “Mastering Strategic Thinking Skills for Maximum Impact in Your Organization”. I watched both lessons (they were about 45 minutes each), which provided me with good information without leaving me committed for hours.
As a finance person, I found the workplace accountability lesson to be valuable in that Stephanie explained how workplace accountability can hurt companies in both productivity, but also the bottom line. For entrepreneurs especially, workers without accountability can de-rail a really successful company and make the already difficult entrepreneurial journey more challenging.
Additionally, the strategic thinking lesson was a great reminder to me to do two things in my own life and career work: think proactively and spend some time just thinking. I can sometimes get mired into the small details making my life very reactionary. By remembering to actually look at my goals and my entrepreneurial horizon I can develop new opportunities. As well, instead of just jumping (sometimes without thinking) I should take a step back and actually look at the whole picture.
What Stephanie teaches in her videos, is the same way she approaches our High Stakes Mastermind Group meetings. We have accountability from her to meet our goals as well as proactive work to keep our businesses moving forward. I would highly recommend both of her videos and to start taking Skillshare classes.
Have you heard of Skillshare? What are your favorite learning resources?
Stephanie Angelo creates #businessmastermind teams that make more money, blow away the competition and have better businesses as a result. Talk to Stephanie about #HighStakesMastermindGroups either by phone (480) 646-2400 or email at Stephanie@StephanieAngelo.com .