I am a naturally introverted person, so how I wound up being a theatre major—and not a techie—I’m not entirely sure. But that’s not the point here. The point is that I tend to like to do things on my own, including starting my business.
However, I know that support is crucial and asking for help is a good thing, so I decided to start a small business support group meeting. Or mastermind group. Still working on what to call it, but the point is it exists. I had this idea a few weeks ago and I actually followed through!
This wasn’t a huge step for an introvert like me, seeing as the group consists of my mother (who has started her own business) and one of my best friends (who is thinking about starting her own business) and myself. I’m giving myself props for actually getting something like this going, and maybe someday I’ll be brave enough to expand.
We had our first meeting a couple of weeks ago, which was mainly about setting up a structure for our group: how often we’re going to meet (every other week, for now), how long our meetings will be (an hour), and whether we want to incorporate food or not (the answer was no, but we all love food so that may change). Then we discussed where each of us is at, set some goals for the next meeting, and brainstormed some ideas.
These are our intentions for the group:
Having a place to come to for encouragement is so important just in general, but especially when you’re starting your own business. Just being in the same place as people who are encountering the same struggles and rewards is comforting.
I can set goals and make plans all day long, but when it comes to actually taking action, I can use a little nudge. Knowing that I have people to report to every couple of weeks helps keep me disciplined and focused.
It’s so great to have people to bounce ideas off of and to brainstorm with, especially people I would do that sort of thing with anyway. Being able to do this with everyone in the same room is very effective. For example, I got some great feedback about how I’m pricing my services. I may be on the low end right now, but I figure I can always raise prices after I’m more established. Especially if I look at my first 6-12 months as a “Grand Opening” type period.
Yes, this needs to be a major part of why our group exists. Starting up and running a business is not always going to be fun, and we need to be reminded of why we’re doing what we’re doing. Having a “fun” meeting to look forward to every couple of weeks should help with this. This is also why I think food will become part of the equation.
All in all, I’m pleased with this first step. It seemed to be received well by the others in the group, and I’m excited to see how it develops. I encourage anyone who’s embarking on a new endeavor to get a little support group (mastermind?) like this going, and if anyone has a suggestion for a better name, let me know. The quirkier, the better. I’m all about the quirk.