Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Power of Small Mastermind Groups in Business and at Work

I had the honor and privilege to witness the power of 3 small local mastermind groups engaging together for a great cause this past Friday night:  the Siena College Pink Zone Reception and Game honoring breast cancer warriors and benefiting Capital Region Action Against Breast Cancer (CRAAB!), a wonderful local nonprofit organization that empowers people impacted by breast cancer.

The high-energy and hands-on CRAAB! Board of Directors was front and center at the event, giving speeches, selling raffle tickets and merchandise; and some of them proudly walked the pink line of Siena basketball players to be honored for their status as warriors living and thriving despite experiencing breast cancer. Those CRAAB! women are a force to be reckoned with; they literally glowed.  The power of their group is their connection and commitment to each other, to the community and to their clients, both from a fund-raising and a service standpoint.  Their reputation is sterling, and deservedly so.

CRAAB! honored a member of another mastermind group, a local chapter of the national Women Presidents' Organization (WPO). As Marri (clearly moved by the energy of the moment) received her "Power Up the Pink" award, her WPO colleagues, her fellow Presidents / CEOs, were there in force to cheer her on.  Their camaraderie and connection were crystal-clear:  they stood up for each other's success and had a great time together in the process.

There were PWN (Professional Women's Network) members there as well:  my own home mastermind group.  A few of the WPO members are also PWN members.  That synergy has been wonderful for both groups.  I have written before about PWN, and how the group has supported and accelerated my own success, as well as the success of my fellow members as each other's Board of Directors.  The PWN women (current and past) who have contributed to my life and work, and vice versa:  these are vocational and reputational pearls whose value is truly priceless.

The success of all three mastermind groups lies in their smaller size (no more than 15 - 20 members each), intimacy and focus.  All three groups are clear about their commitment to each other, as well as their group and individual goals.  They stand up for each other's success, as well as the success of their respective groups as a whole.

And while all three groups focus on the female gender, their power is universal to both genders.  On an intuitive level, the paradigm is a lot like what George Bailey discovers at the end of It's a Wonderful Life:  he focused on building the success of the people of his beloved community of Bedford Falls; and in turn, those same people reflected not only George's personal success, but also put their money where their reflective support was.

In this new year, I wish you the success, prosperity and joy of your own mastermind group:  whether you join an existing mastermind group, or even more innovative: create a new one.

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