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How Do I Prepare for a Mastermind Group Hot Seat

by Don Smith

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You took the leap and invested in a mastermind group. Now it's your turn on the hot seat. How do you prepare so that you get the most out of your moment in the spotlight? That's the question we are answering today. Let's start with some basic terminology so that we're all on the same page.

What is a Mastermind Group?

A mastermind group is a peer-to-peer mentoring concept where group members learn and solve problems based on input from other members of the group. The idea was initially introduced in Napoleon Hill's book “The Laws of Success,” and expanded upon in his more well-known work “Think and Grow Rich.”

While a facilitator may have significant experience to draw on, a mastermind group is not the same as group coaching, although some companies use the term interchangeably. These are peers with diverse expertise helping each other. There isn't one “guru” who supposedly holds all the answers.

What is a Hot Seat?

Many mastermind groups use a “hot seat” format to help organize meetings. If you are in the hot seat, all eyes are on you. This is the time to bring out the issues you are facing as well as get feedback on plans you might have. In large mastermind groups, you may only occasionally get this opportunity but will have more people giving you feedback. In smaller ones, you will be on the hot seat frequently but will have fewer people to provide you with feedback.

Having several other people focused on helping you achieve your goals can be the turning point in your business or life, but you must spend a little time preparing if you are to make the most of this opportunity. If you don't know what you want to get out of your time in front of the group, neither will any of the others in the room.

How Do I Prepare for the Hot Seat?

It can be intimidating the first time you are in the hot seat, but you can dramatically improve your results and decrease your nervousness by spending a little time preparing. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to help determine what you want to discuss.

  1. What do I most want to get out of my time in the hot seat?
  2. What has been working well for me?
  3. What issues am I facing?
  4. What ideas do I have that the group can give me feedback on?
  5. Are there any specific actions I would like other group members to take to help me?
  6. What actions have I taken since the last time I was in the hot seat? Showing that you are acting on advice can go a long way towards keeping group members interested in helping you.
  7. Are there actual numbers I can share? Sharing key performance indicators can help you paint a clearer picture of where you are, and help you see progress during your time with the group. If you don't know what your KPI's are, why not ask the group what you should track!
  8. Who do I need to engage to reach my goals? Can the group help make those connections?
  9. What resources do I need to reach my goals? Can the group help me find those resources?
  10. Out of all of these answers, what are the three items I most want help with?

Any good mastermind group should be held with the understanding that all conversations are confidential. With this in mind, be careful not to “sugar coat” your issues. Being completely honest with your group will dramatically increase the chances that you will get some constructive feedback.

Download a Mastermind Group Hot Seat Template

If you like to be prepared, use the link below to download the full mastermind group hot seat word template to help organize your answers for presentation to the group. Feel free to edit and share with the rest of your group!

Good luck!

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About the Author 

Don Smith

The Personal Growth Channel founder, Don Smith also owns a technology company, has served on the board of directors for multiple companies, and enjoys seeing people achieve their goals. Happily married with five children, he lives in Springfield, Illinois.

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