Today’s Guest

After two and a half years of interviews and solo shows on this podcast, I'm super excited to introduce a new format. You may know Jo Casey from previous episodes: I interviewed her for episodes 21 and 121 (no, we didn't plan the numbering there…but I like it!), and Jo interviewed me for episodes 31 and 115. Plus, I've been on her podcast twice, first talking about social media and later talking about coaching

So you can see that we have loads to talk about! I wanted to partner up with someone this year to do some co-hosted episodes, and we decided we'd make a great match. The idea is to have a conversation (much like my regular episodes) around a single topic each time. We started out experimenting with this new format for episode 132 and got great feedback, so we're giving it another go.

Today, we talk about business coaching, mentoring, and masterminding: how to know what you need, and when. I'd love to hear what you think of this format! Please comment and let me know. Also, we've got a whole list of topics that we want to discuss on this show, but please drop us a note in the comments and let us know what you'd like to hear us talking about. Thanks!

About Jo Casey

Jo Casey is a certified life coach, trainer and coach mentor.  She’s British, slightly nerdy and allergic to the marketing bullsh*t in the coaching industry. Founder of, podcaster, speaker, and writer for Coaching Blueprint, Mind Body Green and Tiny Buddha.

 Things that make me scream with glee: Freshly washed bed linen, watching my husband get all ‘handy' around the place (DIY I mean), yellow wedge sandals, fabric stores, the sound of my kids giggling, Jesus Christ Superstar the musical.

Spirit Animal: Lesley Knope

Why you should listen to me about coaching: I've been training, coaching and mentoring coaches for 14 years and I built my own coaching and training business after a lot of initial trial and error. I've been where you are now and I love showing coaches like you how to pull out all of the things that will make your business stand out and attract the right clients to you, without wasting a lot of time on useless and expensive shiny objects.

What You’ll Learn

  • Business coaching, mentoring, and masterminds: how to know what you need, and when
  • The difference between coaching, mentoring, and masterminds
  • Why you might need each one, and when you might need more than one
  • The elements that make or break a mastermind
  • Jo's top tips on creating a super successful mastermind

How to Subscribe

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Help Spread the Word

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The transcript for this episode can also be downloaded here (no opt-in required).

How to Know Whether You Need Business Coaching, Mentoring, or a Mastermind…and When

HW:      Hello and welcome to the Business Mindset Podcast, episode 164. This is your host Holly Worton and I am back with another co-hosted episode with Jo Casey. This week I am super excited to share with you something that I think is going to be a really, really, useful episode; we will be talking about business coaching, mentoring and masterminding. We are going to talk about what you need and when; we are going to talk about the difference between each one (coaching, mentoring and masterminding); why you might need each one; and when you might need more than one. Do you need a coach, and a mentor, and a mastermind, or two out of the three or just one? The elements that make or break a mastermind; Jo shares some super, super, practical tips on how to create a very successful mastermind. She has been in one for the last couple of years and it has really helped her transform her business.

So, I hope you find this episode useful, it is full of really, really, great information and that’s all for today, let’s get onto the episode.


JC:       Hi everybody! Welcome to the Jo and Holly podcast which I think may have to be the new name. This is Jo Casey from the Work Happy Coaching Podcast and I am with Holly Worton from the Business Mindset Podcast. Hi Holly!

HW:      Hello!

JC:       And today we are going to be talking about coaching, mentoring and masterminding. What’s the difference? And how do you know what you need and when? This is something that we have been planning and talking about for a while, isn’t it?

HW:      Yeah it is! This is one of our original kind of topics we came up with when we first started doing this joint podcast.

JC:       Yeah. And it is one of those things that, obviously both Holly and I are coaches, I suppose I call myself a “coach mentor” a lot more now, because I think there is a difference. But I also think that the terminology, and the different methodologies, I guess, for want of a better word, are really interesting and distinctly different. And I think there is a lot of confusion about that, in the industry, and there is a lot of confusion out there for people thinking: “Well what do I need? How do I know what I need and when?” So, that was one of the drivers for talking about this, but Holly, you have got your own experience about this, not too long ago, haven’t you?

HW:                  No! [ {laughing} Oh my god I am so sorry!

JC:       No, no, no it’s fine I am sorry I should have said that…ok we will cut all this and we will start again… I was thinking about the time when you hired someone thinking that they were a coach because they called themselves a coach?

HW:                  That’s fine, I am happy to talk about that! {laughing}

JC:       Sorry! I should have primed you beforehand…I am so sorry!


HW:                  Yeah. I… it must have been, it was a few years ago, actually, maybe four years ago..? There was this online business person who offered online programmes and coaching and that kind of thing and I really loved her, loved her work, wanted to work with her and researched how I could work with her, was super-excited to start working 1:1 with her, signed up for her biggest package, of course! stepped full, straight into it. And I was expecting coaching, because you know as we have said, I have trained as a coach, so I know what coaching is supposed to be, or at least as I was taught it, and then started with these sessions, I don’t remember how many sessions it was, maybe five, and it wasn’t really coaching, it was more like picking her brain, I guess, but I didn’t really get that until the last session. The last session I just asked a ton of questions and got lots of really, useful, juicy, valuable information, and that was great, and I was able to really make use of that last session, but that was more like a mentoring situation and I what I really needed and wanted was coaching. Because I was really needing to get, kind of, a kick up the butt, {laughing} to get action going and do my stuff and there wasn’t any accountability, there wasn’t any kind of helping me explore stuff. It was really just, kind of, more of a mentoring thing, but very much led by me, rather than by the coach.

So, wow, that really threw me off and it actually took me a long time, probably several months, to figure out what the heck went wrong there, like what it was I was expecting as opposed to what it was that I received. And now, I have a really, kind of, clear idea of what happened but at the time I was like “what’s going on” this is not very useful, but it could have been, if I had just realised what the heck it was. {laughing}


HW:                  Plus, my brain was so stuck on the fact that it was called coaching and I wanted coaching and needed coaching, I didn’t take advantage of the fact that I could have gotten really good mentoring from this person.

JC:       Hmmm.

HW:                  So I think my brain sometimes get stuck on formal definitions and doesn’t see the reality of what’s going on, but that was, kind of, annoying because I really could have gotten more use out of the work, with that person, if I had just kind of figured it out myself.

JC:      Or I guess she could have laid out an agenda “This is how we are going to work, this is what, you know, you can expect from me, this is what I expect from you, here is how to get the best out of the session”, that type of thing.

HW:                  Definitely. I think, and I don’t remember this time, again because that was a few years ago, but I don’t remember any of that really happening, it was kind of like “hey here we are for our first session, let’s talk”. So, I don’t remember there being much framework around that, and perhaps if there had been, then I would have realised “ah ok, this is more like mentoring than coaching”. Then I could have totally taken advantage of that, like I didn’t go into each call expecting that, so it was like I didn’t know how to take advantage of it at that time.

JC:       Ok. That does sound really, frustrating and I am wondering if this might be a good juncture then for us to say “this is our definition of what we mean by coaching”. Because I do think that one of the issues is that as an industry, and the industry is very broad and it is a broach church, and coaching in itself, you know, there are people who have come from say the sports science, sports coaching model background; there are people who have come from a non-directive coactive background; there are people who have done training and coaching; and there are people who haven’t done any training and coaching. So, I think there are some different definitions and some kind of “loosey goosey” {laughing}, definitions out there!

So, it might be helpful if we say “this is our background and our understanding of coaching, and this is what we mean when we use that term”.

HW:      Yeah. Perfect.

JC:       Ok. Do you want to go first?

Both:    {laughing}


HW:      It is so funny because every time I think about the definition of coaching, I forget where it was that I learned this, but it sticks in my mind; it was like “coaching is helping people to achieve their goals more quickly and efficiently than they would have if they had tried to do it on their own” or something like that {laughing}. And I think that was like one of those free coaching academy things that I went to or something, that was like, in the very beginning before I even tried it, I learned that as, kind of, a definition. And, I don’t think that really covers, fully, what that is, but is kind of the basis of what it is, because you are working with people’s goals, you are helping them achieve their goals, you are asking lots of questions as a coach, to help them explore, and it is more about, kind of, I think, digging into their mind and helping them get clarity on stuff, than it is telling them what to do. But, then there are so many cross-overs, I think very rarely do we have 100% pure coaching, 100% pure mentoring. I think there is a lot of cross-over in most cases. What do you think?

JC:       I agree. And, kind of my background, one of the things that I did for a number of years is that I ran a level 5 ILM coaching qualifications, I am a level 7. So, one of the things that…so, I am in the UK so ILM stands for Institute of Leadership and Management, for people who are outside of the UK, and it has kind of become the de-facto coaching qualification for people within a workplace. It tends to be… so people who are managed within an organisation know what a coaching qualification [is], that tends to be the one that most organisations go for, it is probably the largest one out there. Then there are also other coaching organisations, we do have ICF accredited ones, we also have the Association of Coaching, over here in the UK, but they all tend to take a very non-directive stance on coaching, by which I mean, coaching comes from a place of the firm belief that the client has all the answers that they need, and it is the coaches job to help the come up with those. So, the client sets the direction, the client sets the goal, with the help of the coach, and the coaches job is to ask questions, provide, kind of, different perspectives and reframes; tools to help the client explore their reality, and what might be getting in the way of where they are wanting to go and help them get there much more quickly than they would have done on their own. I am just gonna, because I am a bit of a nerd, I am going to read the ICF, International Coaching Federation definition of coaching: so ICF defines coaching as:


“partnering with clients in a thought provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential which is particularly important in today’s uncertain and complex environment”


JC:       Now, a lot of the definitions do get very wordy, and I know that when I was running the courses, one of the exercises that we do, is that we pull together a number of definitions of coaching and ask people to, you know, to assess them. And one of the things that I always notice is that THERE IS NO ONE DEFINITION that everyone absolutely agrees on. So, I think for me, there are elements that are consistent throughout and I would say that it’s that belief that the client has the answers that they need, and it is our job to help facilitate and help those to come out. It is about helping them to explore what they want, without the coach putting on their agenda of what they should want, or what they, you know, the other people think they should want to explore what the client wants and to help them, kind of, get out of their own way, so that they can get there as quickly as possible, and yes that means work around overcoming any blocks that they have, overcoming any kind of belief stuff that they have got in there that is holding them back, some of them may be helping them to come up with different approaches to situations; but it is very much in this kind of partnering, and it is not a telling profession.

HW:      Umm hmm, yeah, very, very much partnering, and I think that is one of the main things that makes coaching different from mentoring, because in mentoring, usually, there is someone is kind of a more experienced person who is giving advice or assisting or helping or supporting the less experienced person.

JC:       Yes. I’d say certainly for mentoring it is generally somebody who has been there and done that, and there is a great story, and I might even have to look it up and provide the link in the show notes, but there is a great story about how the term mentor came about. I think it comes from either ancient Greek, or ancient Roman, history and there was a king who said to his kind of most trusted adviser, who I believe was called ‘Mentor’ or some variation, that’s where the root of the word comes from, and he said “take my son and teach him everything you know”. And so, that’s always a really good reminder for me of the definition of mentoring. It is much more of a teaching role, there is more kind of knowledge in there; you are kind of passing on knowledge and passing on wisdom of experience. And that is one of the reasons that you know I call myself a coach mentor, in that I do do a lot of coaching with coaches, but I am also able to share information and strategy and kind of the wisdom of my experience, for what it’s worth, to help them on their way, because obviously I built a coaching practice and I am still, kind of, growing my coaching practice, so that is one of the things that I help people with. That being said, I think that most coaches that I have worked with will still use bits of mentoring and will still bits of passing on information, because sometimes if somebody genuinely doesn’t have the information you can spend an hour going “so, how did you get that information?” “who else could you ask?” {HW: laughing} and lots of open questions.

HW:      Yeah!

JC:       And sometimes it might be really quick to just go: “I am just going to recommend something for you now…”

HW:      Yes, yes.

JC:       So, you almost step out of that coaching mode and say you know “why don’t you look at this”, or you go: “here’s what you could do”. So, I don’t think it’s a purist medium. I know I am getting proper nerdy I am hearing words coming out of my mouth and I just going “you sound so academic”.

HW:      No, no, I love it, I love it, because when I first trained as a coach, when I first had my first kind of practice clients and first coaching clients, I used to be TERRIFIED of overstepping the boundaries of pure coaching, because my brain is very literal. So, what I used to do was, I would never bring up those kind of advice, tips, things during the session. What I used to do was, in the session notes that I would send to the client by email, I would say: “and by the way you might want to check out this link”.

JC:       {laughing} I love that!

HW:      It was kind of outside of the coaching call, but I would still give them that advice. {laughing} That was my way of overstepping the rigid boundaries that I had set up for myself.

JC:       I love that. That’s so sweet. {laughing}

HW:      Because I was afraid the coaching police were going to come, {laughing} tapping into my Skype call and be like “you have overstepped the boundaries of pure coaching”.


JC:       Ah ha, it is a really important discussion to have if you are within the coaching field or you are thinking about going into the coaching field, because for most of us, particularly if you have, kind of, run a business or you have had staff, or you have worked with colleagues, or you know if you are in a family; most of our communication when we are trying to help somebody to grow, comes from a place of teaching and giving advice. And that can be really effective, but, what it does do is that kind of circumnavigates or cuts short that kind of process of the client, the person, the person that you are talking to, learning and discovering for themselves. And if you think about those lessons that you have had in life which are probably the deepest, the most long-lasting, they are usually learnt through experience no through somebody giving you advice, or reading a book or getting some more information; usually, it has come from discovering your own answers, reflecting on things, thinking “I am never going to do that again”, “ah, I wonder if I try this…” and having those kind of revelatory moments, and I think that one of the important roles that coaches have is to helping people to speed up that process, that I think happens naturally for us, but can sometimes take years.

HW:      Yes!

JC:       I don’t know about you, Holly, but there have been certain situations in my life that I seem to repeat.

HW:      Umm hmm

JC:       Many, many times before the penny dropped. I am thinking you know of relationships that I had with boys {laughing} and then later on as I got older, men, it was just kind of like “this is the same guy, he just looks different and I am doing the same thing with them”, until I finally kind of woke up and thought “I need to find a new way of having relationships with men”. And, you know, now I am happily married and have been for almost ten years, but, what coaching can do is that it can really speed that up. So, we help people to reflect, we help people to kind of go “so what are the times been when it has worked”. We help people to see past their fears and all of that stuff, so it is a really important process, but that being said there are no coaching police, and I think that there are areas of overlap, where sometimes you will dip into, say, advice giving, sometimes you will dip into mentoring and sometimes you will dip into maybe a bit of consultancy, or brain storm together. And for me, even as somebody who kind of has trained coaches in the past, I think that’s fine. So long as the balance is on the coaching and helping people discover, for me [that] is the test, on balance, are you spending more time telling than listening and asking questions and helping someone discover? In which case, I wouldn’t say you are using coaching, you are using more of a mentoring or a teaching or a consulting style.

HW:      Yeah, and I think it also has to do with being aware of…kind of putting aside our need to shine.

JC:       Yes!

HW:      And looking at what the client needs.   Because maybe the client needs more mentoring, or maybe the client needs more coaching, but really, becoming aware of what they need, clarifying that with them and then making sure we are on track with how we are working with them. Because I do think, and I remember this from the very beginning when I very first trained as a coach, lots of people struggling not to give advice.

JC:       Yes!

HW:      So, I think there is that kind of tendency that we have, at the very beginning, when we very first start coaching, to want be like: “well, you should do it this way” “this has worked for me” “I have seen people do this”, that kind of thing. So, that’s something that I really think needs to be nipped in the bud, so that you can really focus on what the client need rather than blurting out whatever it is that you think they need.

JC:       Yeah. Yeah.


HW:      So, we have talked a lot about coaching and mentoring which are both kind of one to one things, let’s talk a little bit about the mastermind.

JC:       Yes.

HW:      How does that differ from coaching or mentoring.

JC:       To be absolutely honest with you I don’t know of one universal definition of mastermind, I know that there are a few of them.

So, I can share my approach to it, and it maybe that you have a slightly different one, and I am sure that there is someone who has written the book on it and listeners can send us comments just going “you are totally wrong this is what masterminding is”. So, my definition of masterminding is having a group of people who, it’s kind of tightly contracted, by which I mean, there is an agreement of codes of practice and codes of behaviour and the purpose of the group, who are there to mutually support one another, on a journey of some sort. So for me I work with coaches primarily and the way that I find that this works really, really well is if you have people who are on a similar path, it does not mean that they are necessarily have to be all coaches, but maybe who are all entrepreneurs, and all at a similar stage in their business, but with some variations. So, it is good if you have got people who are maybe a little bit ahead of you, and also people who are a little bit not quite at your stage, so there is a sharing of some of that kind of wisdom, so there is a mentoring element.

But I think with masterminding as well there is a huge support element, there is a community element that comes from this sense that you are not alone and you can get group think on things sometimes, so “I just need some other perspectives on this issue I have got”. You can also use that, it can be hugely beneficial, because you can get different perspectives on a problem, or a challenge or, different ideas.

And it is also the people who can share the journey with you, you have got people who can celebrate with you, which is really important, you have got people who can commiserate with you, which is really important; you have got people who can pull you out of the doldrums, and talk you down off the ledge; and, I know that we have talked about this before, because that happens on a regular basis. But it is people who get you, get where you are coming from, because, and I have seen masterminds working really well, it is where people have all committed to spend the time and the energy in supporting one another for mutual growth.

I don’t know if that is kind of, higher level, but that’s kind of my definition of it.


HW:      No, I like that I think that definitely makes sense!

JC:       Good!

Both:    {laughing}

HW:      Now, I have a confession to make, I have never been in a mastermind {laughing}.

JC:       REALLY?

HW:      Yeah. {laughing} You know I have joined, kind of, mentoring programmes, I have like a mastermind Facebook group for support; I have joined online programmes that have group support, but I have never had, like a, small mastermind group that I have joined. A couple of years ago, I had a bunch of different people approach me and nothing quite felt quite right and I just never took action to form my own group and it just never happened. And I have always kind of debated, I don’t know – this is actually, I think, possibly useful conversation for us to have publicly {laughing} – so that people can decide what’s right for them when – but I am also really kind of concerned about being in a group and getting off track?

JC:       umm hmm

HW:      Because, you know, I work with my business mentor coach, I have my plan with her, but then I kind of think I also have some fears around being in a group, as well, and then, kind of, getting off track by what their advice or comments or suggestions might be. I tend to find it easiest to track when I, kind of, ignore just about everyone else {laughing} and put my head down and focus on my own stuff. So, what do you think about that, have you ever had that kind of experience in a mastermind group?

JC:       Yeah, so my approach, {laughing} this is kind of full disclosure…me and my mastermind group are kind of midway through writing a book or a playbook, or some kind of guide, to masterminding because (I have to say!) ours is pretty awesome.

HW:      Oh! really?

JC:       {laughing} I am just going to say that.

But I have had experiences before, when I have been in masterminds, and it didn’t quite work or didn’t quite gel. I think there are some elements that make it or break it; and the first one is having really clear definitions on boundaries about expectations and on commitment. So, things like, you know, how often we are going to meet and there needs to be a commitment that you are going to show up, and there needs to be that commitment because say you have got four people in a mastermind group, because I think personally, in my experience anyway, if you have got more than four it becomes a little bit unwieldy, you end up having really long meetings. Which can work. so, I know some people in mastermind groups and they meet like once a quarter but they meet for like a full day. And I don’t have any personal experience of that, but I know that that can work really well, but for me what we do, we meet weekly now.

HW:      Do you meet weekly, sorry?

JC:       We meet weekly.

HW:      Wow! See, that’s a huge commitment as well.

JC:       It is. But the benefits of it are enormous. So, this is kind of the evolution of this group that I am in now. And, as I say, I have been in other groups, I have been in groups where they have met kind of once a month, I have been in groups that were bigger, and to be honest, they didn’t work as well for me. I think that the elements that do work even if you are meeting less regularly are: you need to have a really clear agenda and really clear boundaries; by which, I mean, you need to know what’s the purpose of the meeting, and you all need to be conscious of sticking to that.


So, I am a bit like you I am super busy and I am super focussed, and whilst I love having a chat like the best of people I am not going to take two hours out of my week just to have a chat. You know, I’m an introvert, I don’t need that you know {laughing}. So, having a focus of what we are going to be talking about, what do we do if somebody do if somebody isn’t showing up, what do we do if somebody is getting off track, how do we bring it back on, what do we all want to get out of it, how are we going to manage conflict, how are we going to hold each other accountable. Actually, all of those skills that you develop as a coach, you need to apply to your mastermind group. So, our group we meet once a week for two hours and there are three of us in the group now.

HW:      Oh, ok!

JC:       Sorry, we meet for 90 minutes, sorry. So, what we do is, we are all absolutely committed to meeting once a week. And I have to say that the lengths that we have each gone to sometimes to show up for that meeting is amazing. I mean once of our members, her dad’s really sick, and she has joined meetings from hospital rooms.

HW:      Wow.

JC:       Yeah, we all did it whilst travelling. I have kids and so sometimes there have been mastermind meetings still with my daughter kind of with her colouring book next to me, and occasionally joining in, but we are all committed to doing that. We also have really clear guidelines of how do we manage conflict? because occasionally that happens, you get: “I didn’t like the way you said that”. And you can kind of go into it with “I didn’t like the way you said that” or you can go into with “ok, when you said that, I felt this”. So, and some of this has to be bashed out at the beginning, and then what do you do when people don’t show up, how do you have those kind of trick conversations. So, for us what we do is we have a hot seat. So, that everybody has… we start off the call with some general chit chat “how has your week gone? “what is going on for you right now” and we have a rough model of, we have a share and an ask. So, we each take it in turns and we are relatively strict on the timings as well, so you know if we meet for 90 minutes then we have some chitchat at the beginning, and it is not chitchat it is like “oh I haven’t seen you all week, how have you been?” all of that stuff, because we genuinely love each other to bits, because we have been there through thick and thin. But then we are quite strict on “ok, now it’s your turn”, we have 20-25 minutes, what’s your share, what’s your ask” and then it is down to that person to what kind of help they need. So, “what I need from you right now is… give me some ideas” or “what I need from you right now is… tell me I wasn’t a complete idiot and this wasn’t the biggest disaster and I should just give this up”.

So, there is a lot in there about you owning your own stuff. That being said it is awesome, it is just great fun, and there is something about having people there to kind of go “that was amazing I am so proud of you” and also there to just go “oh, I am so sorry that happened”. And I know that speaking for all three of us, we do have the best mastermind ever, because I know other people might be in other mastermind groups who think theirs is amazing but I am sorry to break it to you but…{laughing}. No, there are other people who have great masterminds as well, but that model works really well for us.


HW:      Mm, because let me ask you a question, because I think there are some questions that people might have: how did you find these people and how long have you been together?

JC:       So, it was an interesting journey, so we started off in a paid mastermind group which another coach had set up, so Kate Courageous, Kate Swoboda, who runs a coaching programme, she has, I think it is called coaching circle, and it meets once a year and there is normally between eight and ten coaches in there and you sign up for it and it is paid, and I think it is six weeks; and, at the end of that, a few of us said “we would like to carry this on”. So, I think six of us said “we would like to carry this on”, so we met for a few times and I think we were meeting once every two weeks, and six people, it was difficult for people to get stuff said and get stuff done. And then there was one or two, who couldn’t meet each time, which was ok because we had, you know, a larger group, but there also then became a bit of you know “well, what’s your level of commitment?”. So, there were definitely some teething problems that went on, and then it kind of ran its course and I think just generally everybody pretty much said “this isn’t working, is it?”.  And so, we kind of disbanded after a couple of months. But in between times what a number of us had done, we had started kind of, one-on-one conversations with one another, and then so four of us said in those one-on-one conversations, “it would be really nice… shall we see if we could get something together you know just with us?”. So, we did that, and it ran for about a year, again, meeting about once a week with the four of us. And then one of the members said, “this isn’t working for me now, I am in another mastermind which is a face-to-face one and I just can't afford the time and I feel like I am getting more out of that one than this one” and so we parted ways and it carried on with the three of us. So, we have been going for about two years now…

HW:      And, of course, it is all online, on Skype.

JC:       So, one of them is in Canada and one of them is in the US, and I am in the UK.

HW:      WOW! How do you make that work with the time zones? Because the US person is in California, isn’t she?

JC:       No, she is on the east coast.

HW:      Ok. Ok.

JC:       So, it’s not…so she is in the same time zone as our Canadian coach, so that’s not too bad, but there is a five-hour time difference for me. So, we have a regular time that we generally meet, which is kind of late afternoon for me, late morning for them. For a while we did it on, a Friday evening for me, in the days when you know I had a day job and stuff. And yeah, we just kind of have to commit to making it work. And there are obviously times when we have to be more flexible. So, next week for example, at our usual time of meeting, I am going to be travelling up to Scotland, so we are going to meet at a different time for next week. So, then we have to do a bit of calendar ninja tactics about: “when can we all fit in”, and that kind of goes backwards and forwards… Occasionally we will have a week off but not very often.

HW:      Ooh. I love that. Well, thank you so much for sharing that because I think, that’s obviously, me not having any experience, didn’t have much to say. But that was so fascinating to see how you have created such clear guidelines and I think you should turn that into a book.

JC:       We have started it and actually it is me who is holding it up, so I am feeling a bit of the shame thing now.

HW:      We did an episode about that Jo! {laughing}

JC:       We did an episode on it, I know we did! So, I need to get onto it.

But yeah having those guidelines right at the beginning works really well. And we did a little kind of pilot with another group of coaching who had heard about our mastermind and were like “how did it work so well for you?” and so we had almost, like a, big group coaching session with them, when the three of us met with the three of them and said…

HW:      You should do a webinar!

JC:       We could a webinar. We had all kinds of plans and again it is me who is holding it up.

HW:      Oooh {laughing}

JC:       Yes, I know! {laughing}

We should do. But genuinely, if this is something that people are interested in, that could give me the motivation and the push to get it done. Because it has been SO great for all of our businesses, you know, there is something about having other people’s ideas and input. And you know when you get stuck in your own head and these mental walls that we can build up for ourselves where you kind of go “this is the only possible way it can be done” and you have two other people just going “um, I don’t think that’s true…you could do that”; and you kind of go “oh my god I had never thought of that before”. And I think especially for us introverts, we can get stuck in our heads a lot. And I have to say, I don’t know how much this has to do with us, but the three of us who are in the group now, we are all introverts. And so, I guess it is kind of easier for us to get down to business, because you know we are not so hot on small talk. {laughing} Um, but I also have to say that they are genuinely two of my best friends in the world now.

HW:      I love that! Love it, love it!

JC:       Yeah.


HW:      So, I am conscious of time but I am conscious that there are a couple of things that we need to discuss here for people, as part of the conversation. So how do you know what you need when?

How do you know when you need coaching mentoring or masterminding? And, might you ever need two or three of them at the same time?

JC:       Yeah! For sure. Have them all!

Both:    {laughing}

HW:      One of each flavour! {laughing}

JC:       I would say that everybody definitely, if you are running any kind of business, then look into have a mastermind, for sure. I mean, it doesn’t have to cost you anything other than your time, other than the amazing book that I have {laughing} committed to writing about it. So, that can be fantastic in terms of keeping you motivated and helping you stay the course.

In terms of coaching I would also say, you know I would, say have a coach, because, the biggest battle, not battle, what’s the word, the biggest challenge I think setting up and running your own business, whether you are doing it online or in bricks and mortar, is the stuff in your own head and the stuff that is holding you back. Not being able to see where your blind spots are, being stuck in your fears and not being able to see your way out, and there is no better way of, other than a coach that I know of, to help you get past those things. So, if you are struggling with you know, “I know that I should be doing this, but why aren’t I…or why am I procrastinating?”, you know, all of that stuff, I would say you know get a coach. And whether that is a coach, a true purist ICF co-active, let me look at, all of my stuff, type coach, or if it’s a coach like you, Holly, who is going to use a particular type of methodology, to help someone over those blocks. And, also, in defining what it is that you want. I think one of the great things about coaching is that it can really help you to see the possibilities for yourself, that you are maybe hoping were there, deep down, but maybe didn’t quite believe were there. So, it is that kind of seeing the possibilities.

HW:      Yeah. I love that. Coaching is so fantastic for clarify. When you are just totally lost in your head and you are like “what the heck do I want”. {laughing}

JC:       Absolutely. And mentoring I think, I am going to say mentoring/consulting. Because consulting is something that we have not really mentioned, but consulting again, that outside eye who is going to give you more of an advice, kind of, role. I think that can be useful, particularly, now because, I don’t know about you Holly, but most of the people I work with it is not lack of information they are struggling with…

HW:      Yes! I say that ALL the time!!!! {laughing}

JC:       In fact, it is information overload. And I think what a good consultant or mentor can do, and if they are also a coach, like Holly and I are, then we can kind of marry the two things; but what they are able to say is kind of say, “ok, you don’t need to worry about that”, “you don’t need to worry about that, this is what you need to focus on right now” “do these steps, then that step, then that one, then, oh ok, let’s look at this knotty problem, and let’s solve it together”. And I think that’s where the kind of, the gap is for people. It is just that clarity and focus, rather than information.

HW:      Yes.

JC:       You know, you know listeners! Listeners, listen to this now, you know in your heart of hearts, you do not need to log onto one more webinar, or sign up for one more e-book, you know that! {laughing}. And yet we all do it, I know I do it too!

HW:      Yeah, yeah.

JC:       Actually, usually, what people need is clarity of what steps to take; and then the ability to get out of their own way, in order to do it, and then some accountability, and someone to celebrate with them. And if you have got a coach who can do all of that for you then fantastic, then you don’t need all three, but I think if you have got a coach who is going to help you particularly with kind of mindset approach, and then maybe you have a mentor, or somebody who is going to give you some consultancy help, on the kind of “this is what you really need to be focussing on now”, and then having a mastermind for that kind of support and that you know helping to keep you accountable and keep you on track. Whichever combination you do it in, they are three elements that you need.


HW:      Yeah, the coach that I am seeing now is very much kind of a coach mentor, so I get kind of both aspects of that, and it is really, really, useful, so, I guess I am missing the mastermind piece.

JC:       But, also, if you get kind of that accountability, that celebrating, that talking you down off the ledge, from your coach as well? Then, maybe it is not something you need. Do you know Holly, because I know you, I know that you also have an informal mastermind network going on…?

HW:      {laughing}

JC:       You know, you and I meet at least once a month, probably more, and we did a little bit of that kind of you know brainstorming, “how’s it going” and all of that type of stuff, and I know that you have a bunch of other entrepreneurs that you do that with too.

HW:      Yeah, you are right. Maybe I do have a kind of informal thing going. I have got this business buddy and we have been having monthly calls for the last four years I think. {laughing}

JC:       There you go then!

HW:      {laughing} So it is very informal but we do have, yeah you are right…so I guess I have some, kind of, support group. One thing that my coach does that I love, is that she sets out kind of a private basecamp project for us to knock ideas back and forth in between sessions, and that really helps me get support between session and get feedback, that kind of thing. So, yeah, doing good.

So, I feel like we have kind of covered the topic, how are you feeling?

JC:       I feel like I have talked a lot! {laughing} I feel like I have just kind of, I am having that moment of just going “I talked a lot but was it useful talk?”.

HW:      Yes, it was useful! Super interesting! And it is going to be more interesting once you write that book. {laughing}

JC:       Oh my god! I am probably now committing to writing a second book! One of my clients said to me this week, “I can't wait until your book comes out!” And I was like, for a minute, “what book?” and she had listened to our podcast episode where I had committed to writing a book. And I was like “Oh, that book”.

HW:      Oh no!

JC:       It is still on my list of things to do so now I have to do it, but yeah, I am a huge fan of all of this stuff, that’s why I do the work that I do, that’s why you do the work that you do, Holly, it is because we know the power of it ourselves.

HW:      Yeah.

JC:       But I would love to, if anybody has any questions, or if there is a need for it, or a desire for it, I would be more than happy to set up a Q&A call, if people want more details on… or, maybe a follow up episode on how to set up your own mastermind. Because I know that there are also paid mastermind groups, and they are slightly different. I don’t have a huge amount of experience with those, although I am in one… but I personally don’t see how it differs from say like a group coaching programme and there is usually like a Facebook group that goes along with it, and that’s kind of about it. For me the idea of a mastermind is this idea that you meet with people on a semi-regular basis, with a fairly clear structure. But, yeah, if people have questions about that, or a desire for it, I am more than happy to do follow-up episode on it.

HW:      Yeah definitely. Or webinar.

JC:       Webinar… yes…

JC:       I could maybe do a webinar and then have it transcribed…?

HW:      Yes! And then turn it into an eBook and it doesn’t have to be long.   It could be a short eBook. All you need is to have all the information people need but not too much. So!

JC:       Ok, all right. So, I am going to publicly declare that I will do, some kind of longer length recording around masterminds, have it transcribed and see if I can turn it into a book.

HW:      Yay!

JC:       {laughing}

HW:      All right, well as always it was a pleasure to discuss business stuff with you.

JC:       Great! I love nerding out on this stuff. {laughing}

HW:      {laughing} And I think it was useful for our listeners as well…so…

JC:       I hope so, and if it wasn’t then listeners I am so sorry.

HW:      If it wasn’t just send us a message….

JC:       “that was rubbish” Yeah. {laughing}

Maybe I should also say for the non-British listeners, a couple of people have pulled me up recently on my use of negative self-talk, I am kind of doing in tongue in cheek, so when I say it, I don’t genuinely think this is rubbish, (when I say “oh, it was rubbish”), or when I call myself an idiot and stuff like that. I am aware of how our words shape our reality, so it is something that I am aware of. I am semi doing it tongue in cheek, before you send me messages going “I am really concerned about your self-talk Jo” I am already on it, ok. {laughing} HW:      {laughing}

JC:       {laughing} Was that ok?

Hw:      That was perfect!

JC:       Well listeners I hope that that was useful for you, please do send us any questions, you can tag us on Facebook you can email me: [email protected] ; you can email Holly at:

HW:      [email protected] You can tweet, you can Instagram…you can, whatever.

JC:       You can also tag me in my Facebook group talking of masterminds, I have an online Facebook mastermind group where there are almost 500 coaches.

HW:      Oooh!

JC:       You are a member Holly!

HW:      I know, I didn’t notice how many had joined…

JC:       Oh, I see! {laughing} I thought you were saying “ooh you have a Facebook group” so yes, you can tag either of us in the Facebook groups, called the “coaches collective” and I will link to it in the show notes.

Are we done? Do you think we have covered everything?

HW:      I think we have covered everything and if anyone has any questions, just let us know and we will consider a follow up. Or, just answer your questions simply. {laughing}

JC:       yeah, yeah, yeah, we will answer your questions but if there are enough of them we could maybe turn it into another one.

HW:      Yeah.

JC:       Thank you so much Holly!

HW:      Thank you Jo.

JC:       I really enjoyed that ok; thank you listeners and we will speak to you soon.

HW:      Bye! Thank you for listening and remember to visit for the show notes on this episode. Thank you.





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