Minds on Main
Are you trying to grow a business, but not sure how to go about it? You may want to follow the lead of six design divas who gather once-a-month at a trendy coffee house on Main Street to brainstorm ideas over a cup of joe.
The Connecticut interior redesigners are putting their businesses on the fast track to success since they began their monthly rendezvous in October 2009. A few rules govern these brainstorming sessions: be open to suggestions and criticism, be willing to contribute to other’s success, regardless if it is your competition, come prepared to problem-solve and lastly, no complaints allowed!
What is it that the design divas formed? Their very own “Mastermind Group,” based on the best-selling book, “Meet and Grow Rich,” by Joe Vitale and Bill Hibbler.
The women all have careers in Interior Decorating, Interior Redesign and Home Staging, and have built up a circle of trust, comfort and honesty to critique, suggest and encourage forward movement in their businesses during a time when many are experiencing an economic halt.
“Forming this group has probably been the single most important move I have made in growing my business,” Lisa Leonardi said of her experience in the group. “The benefits are immediate because the group holds me accountable for the business goals I set for myself and may have been fearful to previously pursue,” said Leonardi.
Owner of The Room Doctor in Madison, Conn. Leonardi decided it was time to take her interior redesign and home staging business to the next level when networking groups and industry conferences left her feeling disappointed. She took matters into her own hands and developed a business support group.
According to the book, “A mastermind group is a powerful alliance between people who help support and enlighten each other on the road to success.” The book promises to “Show you how an effective mastermind group works, how to create and operate one yourself, and how to use it as a stepping stone to financial success.”
“We each get 10 minutes to describe a goal we would like to achieve, or to discuss a problem that needs a solution. After each member has their 10 minutes in the spotlight, the group collectively offers suggestions to each member. We really follow the guidelines given to us in the book, that way we stay focused,” Leonardi said. “And by the end of the meeting, each of us leaves with a specific, tangible goal to work toward before the next time we gather.”
Vitale and Hibbler write that you must start on time, end on time, not fill late members in on what they’ve missed, utilize a stopwatch during their “soap box” moment and to choose a leader to make sure everything is going according to plan.
The group has intentionally decided to limit the members to an intimate group of six in order to form an atmosphere of trust and provide a better opportunity for individual attention to each member’s needs.
“I leave there excited; you know you’re going to be accomplishing something you might not have done without the support of the group,” said Leonardi.
If money talks, well then listen to this: Roger C. Parker, author of 38 self-help books in the publishing and marketing fields, is estimated to be worth $32 million, and is a mastermind group member.
Leonardi says at their next meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 19, the group will officially declare a name for themselves. Should it be …Coffee Clique on Design?…Inspired Designers on Main?…or Master Minds on Design? Send us your vote and don’t forget to tune in next time to find out!