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Mastermind Program

What is it?

The “master mind alliance” was introduced by Napoleon Hill, considered the contemporary founder of the concept, in his book Think And Grow Rich. Subsequently it was shortened and modernized to “mastermind group.” Even Benjamin Franklin belonged to such a group which he called a Junto. Yet it was Hill who explained it and encouraged people to gather together in a structured, repeatable environment for the success of all.

Napoleon Hill defined the master mind alliance as:

“The coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony.”

He noted that:

“No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third, invisible, intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind [the master mind].”


While this happens at every NSA-DC chapter event – formally at programs and Speaker Academy meetings and informally in hallway conversations – a more-focused, results-oriented, long-term program better moves individual members toward their business, financial, speaking, and life goals.

Successfully engaging in a mastermind group is a cornerstone to achievement. It is an opportunity often overlooked because of expense, priorities, overloaded schedules, or negative past group experiences. On our own we stay in our own heads, limited by our own experiences, perspectives, knowledge, and vision. A mastermind group allows us to draw from the experiences, skills, knowledge, and perspectives of others.

The keys to a successful, long-term mastermind group are:
1. A defined structure, procedures, and clear group norms
2. Committed, engaged members who agree to group norms and are in harmony with a definite purpose
3. Transparency and trust
4. Confidentiality (what happens in each session stays within the group)
5. Firm facilitation
6. Honored time guidelines, and
7. Individual and group accountability.

The purpose of the NSA-DC Mastermind Group is to serve members beyond the Speaker Academy and emerging speaker experience, focusing on individual challenges, ideas, and business development strategies as they relate to the professional speaking aspects of their established businesses.

The mastermind group serves to bridge an industry and business development gap between chapter meetings, Speaker Academy, and CSP achievement. (CSP-level speakers can participate though you typically have your own level-specific supports beyond the chapter.)

What’s the value?

In a mastermind group, each person’s participation and commitment is crucial. Your mastermind partners give you feedback, help you brainstorm new possibilities, and set up accountability structures that keep you focused and on track. You create a community of supportive colleagues who brainstorm together to move each other to new levels of productivity and achievement. You gain insights from multiple perspectives that improve your business and personal life, some that reaffirm what you already know, and some you would most-likely not think of on your own.

Your mastermind group is like having an objective board of directors, a success team, and a peer advisory group — all rolled into one. What is the value to you of getting new speaking engagements, cultivating new clients, developing new products, writing a book, learning new technology, winning more proposals, saving money, minimizing mistakes, and otherwise getting help and accountability towards the financial, business, and life goals you set? 

What a mastermind group is NOT

It’s not a class. While your group shares resources with each other, the main focus of a mastermind group is the brainstorming and accountability support among the group members.

It’s not group coaching. Mastermind groups are about the MEMBERS sharing with each other, not about the Facilitator coaching individuals in a group setting. You get everyone’s feedback, advice and support. If the Facilitator is an expert on a topic, she or he may offer a perspective or recommendation. Yet the Facilitator’s role is to keep the conversation balanced between all members.

It’s not a networking group. While you may share leads and resources with each other, it is not the main focus of the meetings. However, through your connections with other members, you may find joint venture opportunities, lead sharing, and professional networking.

NSA-DC Mastermind Schedule: January-through-May, 2022

Groups will meet virtually, via Zoom, based on their facilitator’s scheduled availability and the group’s agreement. Recommendation is that early morning is when minds are fresh, before the day’s interrupts and distractions. Weekdays also preserve weekend family and personal time. Virtual meetings via Zoom allow you to participate when on travel and for members located throughout the DMV area.

What’s my investment?

For the January-through-May, 2022 cohort,

  • NSA-DC Members and Affiliates: $149.00
  • Non-Members: $199.00

Investment includes:

  • Commitment to participate in all sessions during one focused NSA-DC Mastermind term
  • Access to videoconferencing link to participate
  • Facilitator serves to organize, coordinate, and facilitate the group and is not considered a group member

Note that you will need your own computer, tablet, or smart device; a high-speed internet connection; a web cam or camera capability on your smart device; a quiet place without distractions; and a way to take notes for yourself.

What are the criteria for participating in the NSA-DC Mastermind program?

  • Be a full-time or soon-to-be full-time established speaker (any business model as long as speaking is part of your financial enterprise)
  • Have a minimum of 3-years’ speaking experience receiving revenue, fees, back-of-room sales, follow-on contracts, or salary related to your speaking for at least 51% of your experience
  • You know your topics, areas of expertise, and market focus and are actively speaking and doing business with your market
  • Are an NSA National member at the Essential, Advanced or All Access level
  • Accept and agree to the NSA Code of Ethics
  • Are able to actively participate the entire term (no in-and-out visits, inconsistent or random appearances, or lurking)

Mastermind programs succeed best when members have levels of experience and mindsets that contribute to and uplift each other.

How do I apply?

The application is in the process of being finalized. Please let us know your intention to apply by completing this short interest form. As soon as we have the application ready you will receive it at the email you put on the form. Make sure it is a working email address that you check regularly.

Stay tuned. We’re excited to get our NSA-DC Mastermind Program in action with you as a part of it!

Sylvia Henderson
NSA-DC Mastermind Program Coordinator



The National Speakers Association (NSA) is the leading organization for professional speakers. Since 1973, NSA has provided resources and education designed to advance the skills, integrity and value of its members and speaking profession.

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