Cheetah Masterming Group - Social Capital for Business & Goal Success
When people think of capital, they often only think of money. However, if you consider what is really behind money and what helps you achieve your goals...it's social capital.
So, what can you do to tap into your social capital?
The Power of the Mastermind. One powerful tool that has helped me in my career has been being part of mastermind groups. The concept of mastermind is that you assemble a group of people to meet on a frequent basis with the sole purpose of helping each other achieve goals.
A mastermind group is a different animal from groups that come together to work on a specific project or a therapy group that forms to help people deal with some element of dysfunction in their lives. The express purpose of a mastermind group is to offer a multi-layer supportive environment for each individual to expand what is possible for them.
When people participate in mastermind groups, their goals typically start out as individual goals until the members of the group start to gel. Then various members of the group will combine their talents to pursue joint goals that emerge as they get to know each other's talents and needs. Let's look at how this social capital works in a mastermind group.
Social Capital at Work. Think of your relationship as a numbers game. Anthropologist Robin Dunbar showed that people can maintain about 100 to 230 stable social relationships - that is they know who each person is and how they all interrelate. The rule of thumb is that we each maintain a social network of about 150 people.
Groups of 5 or less can be self-organized and more spontaneous. With smaller groups, there are smaller numbers of other social networks to pull from (750 total). Mastermind groups that use a trained facilitator can grow to 10 to 12 people, so that's an extended network of 1,500 to 1,800 total.
Just by getting to know more about what each person is trying to achieve, people in a larger mastermind group open themselves up to a pool of 1,800 other people who could potentially help them achieve their goals.
The Rule of Reciprocity. According to Bob Cialdini, author of Influence: Science and Practice and Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, reciprocity is a fundamental human driver. This means if you do something for me, I am going to feel compelled to do something for you. the more you help others achieve their goals, the more others will help you achieve yours.
The Importance of Frequency and Duration. In Hepworth's work on social work practice, groups need to balance out the time commitment required for the group meeting with what the members of the group can reasonably fit into their schedules. Twenty meetings is onerous for most people, but making a year-long commitment to meet every three to four weeks for 90 to 120 minutes is typically optimal for each member to make significant accomplishments through their participation in the group. Toss in a trained facilitator leading activities to help each member develop greater sills for achieving goals, and those meetings become even more productive and valuable. With mastermind groups of 12 people, there is typically a core group of 6 to 8 people who will show up at every meeting.
The “Umph” of Influence. When people see what is possible because someone else has achieved it, they become more aware of how their own perceptions or limitations are holding them back. When you get a group of people together whose sole purpose is to expand what is possible for them, you set in play a series of events that do exactly that.
People influence each other on a continual basis. With the express purpose of getting a group together to expand what is possible, each member confronts and moves past his or her own perceptions and develops a different vision of responsibility.
The Secret of Support. Participants in mastermind groups meet for the express purpose of expanding their opportunities and to help support others in the group do the same. They can either be self-organized or can use a trained facilitator who is actually a functioning member of the group as well. In a supportive, helpful environment, people develop more confidence to tackle goals that they may have shied away from pursuing.
Expand your Opportunity. Think of a mastermind group as a perfect way to expand your opportunity and get your social capital working for you. It’s an investment of your time that will pay off and give you a whole new perspective on achievement.
By Michelle LaBrosse, PMP (Reprint permission from www.CheetahPHAST.com Project Management for health, abundance, and sustainability)
Learn more about the author, Charlene Draine.
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