A Mastermind group is different from a social club or other networking organization in that it is created with a goal in mind and holds its members accountable for achieving that goal. The concept was first introduced by Napoleon Hill in his groundbreaking book on personal success Think and Grow Rich.

It is relatively easy to start a Mastermind group and there are many reasons you might want to, such as:

-Increased access to resources

-Reaching goals in your business and personal life

-Getting past obstacles, mental blocks or anything else standing in the way of your success or happiness

-Specific on point help with a particular task, with accountability

So then how do you start a Mastermind group? Since the whole purpose of the group is to bring together the power of collective thought to accomplish a given goal, you must first decide what the goal and or focus of the group will be. Are you a small businessperson who needs help with marketing? A medical practitioner who needs to brainstorm on best practice solutions? Or maybe you desire a group not related to business at all but targeted at a social or local political issue. Then of course you need to decide where to meet.

While these days it is possible to have a Mastermind meeting online there is still something about face to face brainstorming that gives the Mastermind group its greatest power. Usually a community meeting hall or house of worship will be available for your group meeting. If it is business related, maybe the conference room of one of the members. Whatever location you choose, it should be quiet and private not a restaurant or other public place. A Mastermind group meets to work to get things done, while you may make great friends it is not a social outing.

Other things you will need to consider when forming a Mastermind group are:

-How to get members? This depends on the focus of the group you have decided upon. If it is business related, try ads in the business section of your local newspaper or Chamber of Commerce, or newsletter of a related trade organization. You can also use, Facebook, Myspace, Craig’s List, or any number of other social networking sites, as well as old-fashioned methods like posting flyers in your local library, community center, or coffee houses.

-What size should the group be? This is up to you. A typical group is 3 to 6 persons, but a Mastermind group can be as few as two people.

-How often will you meet? Weekly is best, for an hour to 90 minutes.

-Commitment and confidentiality? No matter how long you choose to have your Mastermind group meetings, or how often, it is important that you get a commitment up front from people to attend each and every meeting – or your cause is lost. It is also important that people feel they can discuss anything in the group in confidence and it will not be shared outside of the group, especially as it may relate to propriety business practices. Many groups ask their members to sign a Non-discloser agreement (NDA). If you do not use NDA’s in your business, you can download one at http://www.entrepreneur.com/formnet/legalforms.html.

You do not need to register your group as any kind of official entity, collect dues or anything like that. In fact, in its truest sense, the traditional Mastermind group does not charge any fees, or have any officers but is created in an egalitarian philosophy for the good of the whole.

Author's Bio: 

Jason Harvey is the author of "Achieve Anything In Just One Year: Be Inspired Daily to Live Your Dreams and Accomplish Your Goals." He is a Certified Life Coach and founder of the Limitless Institute, a non-profit organization that funds research into human motivation and personal development. Jason's blogs offers advice, lessons and tips on personal development, motivation and happiness.