Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Power of a Mastermind Group

General Principles of Success
Many years ago, the famous Andrew Carnegie saw a need to share the secret of success with the world. Knowing how to recruit people to assist in achieving his dreams, he put the challenge to Napoleon Hill to invest more than 20 years interviewing more than 500 exceedingly wealthy individuals (most of whom started life with nothing) to identify and confirm the secret to success - in this case, the success in attracting money into your life on a consistent basis (although the concept can be used for however you choose to define success and/or happiness).

Hill set to the task and encompassed his findings in his book, "Think and Grow Rich", a now timeless classic.

The main premise of the book is that your mind is the most powerful tool that you have, and will ever have. When used properly, the mind can create any future and reality that one desires. However, for a variety of reasons, most people are unable to see past the limitations that are ingrained in their thinking. Once thoughts can be focused on an objective - and not derailed by limitations - the actions that derive from those thoughts will guide one towards the success that they desire.

Sounds simple enough. So, why isn't everyone able to simply 'think' themselves into business success and a fortune? Well, actually, everyone is able to do this, but most people are not aware of the steps involved with acting this way consistently and they are not sure how to overcome the obstacles that prevent such thinking.

A study of individuals who achieve great success and wealth will reveal a deep rooted belief in opportunity and abundance. These people often will also see temporary defeat as an opportunity to learn and grow, not as a failure and a reason to quit. And it is this 'inner voice' that guides their thoughts and actions. Whereas the opposite is true of most people. For a variety of reasons most people see limitations and a virtual impossibility towards reaching their goals.

The book goes through many concepts and offers a specific 'step-by-step' approach towards advancing to your goals. In fact, Page 28 gives instructions on exactly what to do to develop a 'money-consciousness' that will attract wealth into your life.

Hill discusses, Chapter by Chapter, the topics of:

1. Desire
2. Faith
3. Autosuggestion
4. Specialized Knowledge
(I must plug in here that exit strategy planning is currently regarded as 'specialized knowledge' in a world of advisory services that are becoming increasingly commoditized every day).

5. Imagination
6. Organized Planning
7. Decision
8. Persistence

then Chapter 9, Power of The Master Mind

The Mastermind Principle
First Hill describes 'power' as "organized and intelligently directed Knowledge . . . through the coordination of effort of two or more people who work toward a definite end, in a spirit of harmony."

Hill then makes the somewhat dramatic statement (p. 182) that "No individual can have great power without availing himself or herself of the Master Mind Principle." He challenges the reader to "analyze the record of anyone who has accumulated a great fortune . . . and you will find that they have either consciously or unconsciously employed the Master Mind Principle."

He describes thoughts as a 'stream of power' and states that "the positive emotions of thought form the side of the stream which carries one to fortune. The negative emotions form the side which carries one down to poverty."

So, the Master Mind Principle includes a group of people coming together to achieve a stated objective and working in harmony towards achieving that end.

Forming a Mastermind Group
Pinnacle Equity Solutions leads the exit planning industry in training and execution of exit plans. Beyond the training and executions, we also collaborate in groups towards advancing our individual businesses as well as the industry as a whole.

That is what occurred in Tampa last weekend as 10 Pinnacle 'Platinum Level' Members came together for our first of three Mastermind Meetings for 2010. These meetings are designed from Napoleon Hill's writings - recognizing that our thoughts for success need to be organized in writing and stated as our intention. As a mastermind group, we each presented our goals for the year and 'brainstormed' on ways in which exit planning could be successfully incorporated and profitably employed in our businesses. This is a very powerful exercise as the creative energy which comes from these meetings serves to focus on thoughts of success and the follow up coaching and subsequent meetings hold us accountable to our goals and keeps our mind set towards achieving what we set our minds to.

The Key to Success is Like-Minded and Right-Minded Participants
The key to making this type of group work well is getting the right-minded people together, setting a specific agenda, closing the door (physically) to close out all distractions, and allowing the creative energy to flow towards the objective that was stated.

Each of the ideas created in these weekend session is the collective product of the group thinking delivered from a focus on the needs of each individual Member in achieving their goals.

The Mastermind group is, in effect, a very well organized 'reminder' of what you have committed to and a system by which you receive insights for your goals and also by which you maintain your focus.

Master Mind groups that follow Hill's formula are remarkably effective. These types of groups are not very hard to assemble. However, there is a secret to forming these groups. It is this secret that forms the basis of Pinnacle's Platinum Level group. It is also the insight that can assist you in forming your own group to assist you with your goals. To learn more about forming one of these groups and how Pinnacle will launch its new Certification Program, be sure to register for Wednesday's call.

I am very excited about launching into this New Year and to join my fellow Master Mind Platinum Members in making quantum leaps in our businesses. As I stated in my State of the [Pinnacle] Union address last month, my Company had a quantum leap forward in 2009 and expects to continue that momentum in 2010. With the help of my Platinum group, I expect to lead our collective success into and through this New Year.

Specializing in Business Exit Strategies, John M. Leonetti, Esq., M.S. Finance, CM&AA founded Pinnacle Equity Solutions to provide advisors with the tools they need to incorporate Business Exit Planning into their advisory practices. To learn more about John's Exit Strategy Services and to receive a FREE copy of his special report, "How To Incorporate Exit Strategies Into Your Advisory Practice", visit Pinnacle Equity Solutions

Monday, February 22, 2010

Exit Planning Workshop Preview Call

Mark your calendar for Wednesday, February 24th for our 3rd Workshop Preview Call.

On this call, John Leonetti will further discuss the benefits of our 2-Day Workshop March 19th & 19th in Boston, MA.

John is also going to announce Pinnacle's Inaugural Certification Course

That's right . . . after three (3) years of building content, teaching a cutting-edge MBA course, writing a leading book on exit planning, and training and mentoring hundreds of advisors, Pinnacle is announcing it's latest offering

The Certified Business Exit Consultant Program™

But there is a catch . . .

We are only admitting ten (10) advisors to this intensive training.

'Why so few advisors' you may ask . . . the answer is simple,

Along with this exciting program we are going to guarantee your success . . .
or your money-back.

How can Pinnacle make such an offer?

Tune in to listen to Pinnacle founder, John Leonetti, walk you
through the details of this exciting program and how it relates to the teachings at our upcoming Workshop.

To register for this informative call, please click here.

Specializing in Business Exit Strategies, John M. Leonetti, Esq., M.S. Finance, CM&AA founded Pinnacle Equity Solutions to provide advisors with the tools they need to incorporate Business Exit Planning into their advisory practices. To learn more about John's Exit Strategy Services and to receive a FREE copy of his special report, "How To Incorporate Exit Strategies Into Your Advisory Practice", visit Pinnacle Equity Solutions

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Pinnacle's State of the Union Address

This feature article highlights the call that John Leonetti did for his Pinnacle Members describing his assessment of today's marketplace of exiting owners as well as the growing 'exit planning' community and Pinnacle's plans for 2010 to continue its leadership role in this exciting and emerging profession.

2009 Pinnacle Overview:
The Small Business Owner Continues to Suffer
Overall, in 2009, the small business owner continued to suffer from restricted access to credit and a lack of vision towards future prospects and growth. Amidst this backdrop of challenges, a small percentage of forward-looking owners choose to invest in the longer-term planning exercise that is the foundation of a solid exit plan.

However, sewn within this general fabric of business owner lament were positive signs. Once we got through the summer of 2009, a noticable trend occurred . . . more owners took meetings on the exit planning topic and signed engagement agreements to get the process started. This trend could be observed quite clearly as it stood in stark contrast to the 'deafening silence' of the first six months of 2009. And, within the walls of Pinnacle's headquarters, it has had me and my team quickly assembling resources to support this growing trend of owner engagements.

Listed below are many of Pinnacle's initiatives to assist you in capturing the emerging opportunity and being prepared for this coming wave of owners who are opening up to the idea of setting a plan to address the largest financial transaction of their lives.

Highlights from Pinnacle's Existing Content and What Was Delivered in 2009
" . . . through our newsletters, training calls, workshops, spotlight calls and support we’ve presented to you experts, authors, articles, information and topics that were timely and were created to continually educate you on how you can improve your exit planning service for owners. We’ve listened to our Members who have been asking for even more advanced training and have created many focused initiatives for the coming year, improving on our already outstanding reputation for quality content and delivery."

Pinnacle's growing library of proprietary content available to our Members / licensees, now includes more than 100 hours of specialized training, including:

* 64 unique newsletters - each of which has a recorded training call.
* 28 expert interviews / Spotlight Guest calls covering a wide array of topics that
exit planners need to have access to in order to better understand
their exit planning conversations and services to owners.
* 24 unique white papers and specialized topics
* Prospecting tools, including letters and presentations to owners
* Instructional classes on packaging and presenting exit planning to owners
* Sample exit plans and fact finders to assist with your owner meetings
* Special coaching calls on general practice management
* Special guidance on how to market your exit planning services
* An online 'school' that addresses Pinnacle's exit planning system.

. . . and much, much more proprietary content to support you in learning in this field and delivering solutions to your owners.

Recognizing that an incredible foundation has been built, Pinnacle now is focusing on initiatives for 2010 that will empower you, that advisor to the owner, to be more pro-active with your training . . . empowering you to be even more profitable.

2010 Pinnacle Initiatives-
To continue the momentum that has been generated at Pinnacle, John laid out the aggressive agenda being implemented as Pinnacle continues to define excellence in the exit planning arena.

The first area to address in supporting our Membership is an . . .

Online Exit Planning Software Program
To add to Pinnacle's exit planning system, we are excited about the roll-out of our latest tool for advisors - a web-enabled software program empowering you, the consultant to business owners, to easily apply all of Pinnacle's traing to the buildout of exit plans right from your desktop computer. This online tool will empower members to organize client information and provide high quality deliverables. As more and more exit planning engagement agreements are signed, there is a pressing need to provide this tool to our growing base of advisors.

Pinnacle will soon announce the availability of this web-enabled, dynamic and proprietary software solution that will provide you with a deliverable that not only follows Pinnacle's process for exit planning but also is rich with colorful charts, updated tax and regulatory information, as well as being customizable to your needs with your owners. The Membership has spoken and we have listened and are ready to deliver a 'category killer' application that will make the presentation and assembly of your exit plans more powerful . . . and your practice more profitable.

Next, John discussed the 'foundation' of exit planning content and how it will now be organized into a . . . .

Certification Program
After three (3) years of building focused and organized exit planning content, Pinnacle is quickly organizing and adding to all of this excellent material to bring you a cutting edge, rigorous Exit Planning Certification Course. Pinnacle's Certification Committee has been working on this project for nearly 5 months to deliver to the marketplace a Certification and represents nothing short of excellence in the field of exit planning. We, as a Committee, feel strongly that the exit planning marketplace needs better definition. As the leader in this space, it is therefore Pinnacle's responsibility to provide this definition of excellence. It is against this backdrop that the Certification course is being built.

Pinnacle recognizes that most advisors and consultants who offer exit planning today do so as an 'add on' to their existing advisory service. This has created a challenge for advisors and consultants to focus on the training and delivery of exit planning services (particularly in light of the economy in 2009). The Certification course will focus your efforts and further define the expectation and direction that you can take your exit planning practice. Far beyond simply holding yourself out as an exit planner, this Certification will challenge you to differentiate yourself from the growing field of those professing to provide this service by empowering you with training and advanced tools to deliver solutions to owners at a whole new level.

Expect to see details of this launch in March of 2010.

Advanced Member Support
To accomodate our growing Membership, Pinnacle is currently interviewing a Membership coordinator. Our Membership has spoken on this point and we, again, have listened. It is important to Pinnacle that your questions be answered and, moreover, that our tools are understood and used on a regular basis. To this end, we have built a support position to address only these issues so that Pinnacle can more effectively provide phone support and the distribution of our proprietary online newsletters. In addition, we will be providing advanced support for the completion of your exit plans

Upgrade to Our Training Program
An interesting observation came from the Members in 2009 that required a bit of thinking . . . perhaps, at times, we were providing too much content, training and information. Some Members felt as though they were struggling to keep up with the pace of information that we distributed. To address this issue, we have expanded our training to include eight (8) Advanced Practice Management calls throughout the year. These advanced calls will put into better context the topics that we cover in our training and assist you in better applying the teachings in your businesses.

We are excited about this improvement to our programming and look forward to our first Advanced Practice Management call in mid-February.

Upgraded Online Newsletter Service
To our chagrin, we have discovered that many of our Members continued to struggle with the marketing and distribution of the exit planning content to their business owner clients and prospects. This means that much of the excellent training and content remains in the minds of advisors and not in the hands of [potential] exiting owners. To address this issue, Pinnacle is systemetizing our process for establishing online delivery of our newsletters in a customized format for your practice. Moreover, we are adding to our support team the ability to do this without your [manual] involvement. Members have heard about this already but should expect individual phone calls to discuss how we can help get you set up with this important marketing tool.

Direct to Owner Presentations
One of the most exciting projects that we have in a Beta phase is the mailing and telemarketing program for direct business owner contact. Although we recognize that 'cold prospecting' is one of the worst and most expensive forms of new client acquisition, we also know the topic of 'exit planning' is highly specialized in its messaging to owners. What does this mean?

Simply put, discussing an exit is a very private matter for most owners and, therefore, it is a lot of work for any one advisor or consultant to get this dialogue started with an owner. Our 'direct to owner' initiative will be the 'door opener' to get you in front of owners on a regular basis.

This 'direct to owner' program is currently in beta testing and will, hopefully, be offered in the 2nd quarter to the Membership as an additional service. Our success with these Beta tests will be defined by Pinnacle's ability to consistently put Members in front of business owners in a proven and strategic manner to have the exit planning conversation. We are very excited about our current Beta tests and will present more details of this program in the 2nd quarter of 2010. Keep an eye out for applications for this exciting program.

Platinum Program
Pinnacle's year-long, select group of Platinum Members continues with a powerful assembly of advisors in 2010. This group had four (4) seats open up after the 2009 group concluded and they were quickly filled with motivated advisors and consultants who were very good, non-competitive, highly experienced and suppportive Members of Pinnacle's program.

More than a few Members have asked about Platinum II - a 2nd Platinum Group which would be built for collaboration on owner exit plans, as well as to suppport each other in a non-competitive manner in building each other's individual businesses. Given all of Pinnacle's current initiatives, we are not opening a 2nd Platinum Group until, at least, the 2nd Quarter of 2010. For those with a continued interest, we encourage you to continue to let our office know that you would like to be a part of this new group and we will keep your application on file for [likely] the 2nd half of the year when this new group opens up.

Additional Live Chapter Meetings
Finally, we will continue a wonderful tradition that was started in the 2nd half of last year . . . Pinnacle's quarterly, Members only, Chapter meeting. Although our Chapter meetings are currently scheduled for Boston (next meeting on April 7th in Boston) all our nation-wide members are invited to join us for these full days of networking and advanced practice management. We have had tremendous feedback and success with this program so far and look forward to expanding the concept into other markets in 2010.

Closing Thoughts
It is an exciting time to be a part of Pinnacle's exit planning 'Union'. We see continued excitement around this unique offering and look forward to another year of delivering excellence to your consulting and advisory businesses.

Also, be sure to check out Pinnacle's 2-Day Workshop at Suffolk University's Law School in Boston, MA March 18th & 19th at Suffolk University.

Specializing in Business Exit Strategies, John M. Leonetti, Esq., M.S. Finance, CM&AA founded Pinnacle Equity Solutions to provide advisors with the tools they need to incorporate Business Exit Planning into their advisory practices. To learn more about John's Exit Strategy Services and to receive a FREE copy of his special report, "How To Incorporate Exit Strategies Into Your Advisory Practice", visit Pinnacle Equity Solutions